Republicans overwhelmingly voted in favor of keeping GOP Conference Chairwoman Liz Cheney (R-WY) in her leadership position during a conference-wide vote Wednesday evening, according to multiple reports.
The leadership vote, which was reportedly 145-61, affirmed Cheney’s position as the number three Republican in the House, even though she was one of only ten Republican lawmakers to vote to impeach former President Donald Trump last month. The vote was conducted by secret ballot.
Politico, citing GOP sources involved in the effort to oust Cheney, reported back in January that at least 107 House Republicans, a narrow majority of the House GOP, were on-board with booting Cheney as the number three Republican in the House.
While House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) previously voiced support for keeping Cheney in leadership, he also suggested the GOP Conference needed to hold discussions amongst themselves about it. After the vote, McCarthy told reporters that the discussion allowed members to “air their differences,” according to USA Today reporter Nicholas Wu.
Cheney/Scalise/McCarthy at mics following the vote. McCarthy says they had a “very good conference” where “people were able to air their differences” pic.twitter.com/A5TuP1zdfn
— Nicholas Wu (@nicholaswu12) February 4, 2021
“We addressed this as a family, addressed this as a team and ultimately finally worked to have a vote to keep the entire team together and ultimately kept the team much stronger,” McCarthy told reporters in a press conference after the meeting, according to Politico. “Because while we aired those grievances, everyone tonight was united.”
Cheney, the highest-ranking Republican to vote to impeach Trump, has since stood by her decision and also refused to apologize for doing so during the meeting, according to NBC News, which cited a source in the room. Cheney also told reporters Wednesday evening, while leaving the meeting, that the conference had a “terrific vote,” and that Republicans wouldn’t be “divided” or allow a situation where “people can pick off any member of leadership.”
“We really did have a terrific vote tonight and terrific time this evening laying out what we’re going to do going forward, as well as making clear that we’re not going to be divided and that we’re not going to be in a situation where people can pick off any member of leadership,” Cheney said after the vote, reports ABC News. “It was a very resounding acknowledgment that we need to go forward together and that we need to go forward in a way that helps us be back.”
Congressman Jim Jordan (R-OH) told Axios that while he voted in favor of ousting Cheney, he is now ready to move on: “It wasn’t the position that I supported, but I’m moving forward. Liz is going to say is conference chair, and we’re gonna work together to take back the majority.”
This article has been expanded after publication to include additional information.