The House GOP voted on Wednesday to keep Representative Liz Cheney (R., Wyo.) in her position as the third-highest ranking Republican in the caucus.
GOP representatives voted 145-61 to retain Cheney as the Republican Conference Chairwoman, with one lawmaker voting “present,” according to CNN. The vote was conducted by secret ballot, and came after both Cheney and her opponents demanded the vote on Wednesday evening.
Cheney faced the vote after backing the impeachment of former President Trump, who incited a mob of supporters to amass at the Capitol on January 6. The mob eventually breached the building and forced lawmakers to evacuate, and five people died in the ensuing riot including a Capitol police officer.
Staunch Trump supporters including Representatives Jim Jordan (R., Ohio) and Matt Gaetz (R., Fla.) had called for a referendum on keeping Cheney as conference chairwoman. Gaetz went so far as to fly to Wyoming and urge supporters to vote Cheney out of office entirely during the 2022 elections.
House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R., Calif.) “needs to hold a vote on Liz Cheney,” Gaetz told Fox News host Tucker Carlson last week. “And if he doesn’t, the Republican Conference is a total joke. More than half of the Republican conference has said that this person does not speak for us.”
However, during a nearly four-hour GOP conference meeting on Wednesday, Cheney defended her support for impeachment.
“I won’t apologize for the vote,” Cheney told colleagues.
Cheney reportedly received McCarthy’s backing on Thursday.