Votes on polarizing lawmakers are testing GOP unity ahead of the Trump trial

The House Republicans decided on Wednesday to stand by two GOP legislators who have polarized the party and voted to keep the rope. Liz Cheney as their No. 3 leader and said they would fight a Democratic press to kick rope. Marjorie Taylor Greene from her committees.

In a 145-61 by secret ballot, House Republicans overwhelmingly rejected an uprising by right-wing Conservatives to throw Cheney, R-Wyo., Over her vote last month to accuse then-President Donald Trump.

Minority leader Kevin McCarthy ridiculed the Democrats for considering a vote in the House on Thursday that would remove Greene from her committees. McCarthy’s comment was a signal that he rejected bipartisan demands that high-ranking Georgia Republicans be punished for her online embrace of racist and violent views and bizarre conspiracy theories.

Decisions on Greene and Cheney have appointed the GOP a politically painful test of its direction as it goes beyond the Trump presidency. Since he reluctantly left the White House last month, the party has been ideologically driven as it has fought over whether to embrace his norm-breaking division or the party’s more traditional, politically oriented conservative values.

But shortly after the Democratic-led House Rules Committee cleared the way for Thursday’s vote, McCarthy released a statement saying Democrats “chose to raise the temperature” by trying to “partisan power”.

Mr McCarthy condemned Greene’s earlier endorsements of conspiracy theories – after weeks of being somewhat critical of her – and said the first-term congresswoman had admitted in a private conversation that she must meet “a higher standard” as a legislator. Greene has shown support for calls for violence against Democrats and bizarre fictions about fake school shots.

“I keep her word, as do her actions in the future,” McCarthy said.

Cheney is a daughter of former Vice President Dick Cheney and a fixture of the party’s establishment. She was among only ten House Republicans who voted to accuse Trump last month.

“I do not apologize for the vote,” Cheney told her colleagues behind closed doors, according to a person familiar with the session who spoke on anonymity terms to discuss the private meeting.

During a break in the closed door, McCarthy told reporters he had defended Cheney inside.

“People can have disagreements. That’s what you can discuss. Liz has the right to vote her conscience, says McCarthy, who had not previously given a clear signal as to whether he would support his lieutenant.

At the previous rules committee meeting, chairman Jim McGovern, D-Mass., Said lawmakers would send “a terrible message” if they did not take action against Greene. “If this is not the bottom, I do not know what the hell it is,” McGovern said.

McCarthy tried to fire on the Democrats and criticized them for not taking any action against their own legislators whom he did not mention, including one he said “spread anti-Semitic troops.” Rope. Ilhan Omar, D-Minn., Commented critically on Israel in 2019 and apologized.

The internal GOP battle over how to handle Greene and Cheney underscored the grip of Trump and his constituents on much of the party. But it is not uniform.

About two-thirds of House Republicans voted to support Trump’s attempt to reverse his election loss in November – just hours after his supporters killed the storm on the Capitol that led to his accusation of inciting rebellion. Still, Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., And other GOP senators have paralyzed Greene, reflecting concerns that her wing of the party could not win state Senate races.

House Republicans had been subjected to bipartisan pressure to punish Greene, including from McConnell. A house vote was expected to be a political ordeal for many Republicans, forcing them to go on record to defend or punish the unreliable, socially conscious Greene.

She entered the national political scene after just one month in office and with enthusiastic support from Trump. Even during the attempt to punish her, she has quarreled with Democrats and raised money for the controversy.

Republicans appointed Greene to the Education and Labor Committee, a decision that drew particularly harsh criticism because of her proposal that mass schooling in Connecticut and Florida could be a hoax. Greene is also on the Budget Committee.

McCarthy said Democrats rejected his offer to move Greene to the House Small Business Committee instead.

It is unusual for party leaders to remove legislators from committee assignments, which can help them address the needs of their districts and increase campaign funding.

In 2019, the house’s GOP leader removed the rep. Steve King, R-Iowa, who had a history of racist comments, from the agriculture and justice panels after wondering aloud in a New York Times story about when the term “white supremacist” became offensive. He lost the Republican primary for his seat in 2020 and is out of Congress after serving nine terms.

In online videos and through supportive “likes” on social media, Greene has expressed support for racist beliefs, calling for violence against House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and former President Barack Obama and other false theories. She has also approved fictitious QAnon claims that Trump tried to reveal secret rings of human trafficking run by Democrats.

The Senate plans to begin its indictment against Trump next week. In a procedural vote last week, all but five GOP senators voted to reduce the procedure, suggesting his conviction is unlikely.