Feb 18, 2022 - Politics & Policy

House GOP leader breaks from tradition and endorses Cheney challenger

House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy. Photo: Alex Wong/Getty Images

House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy endorsed GOP Rep. Liz Cheney's opponent for Wyoming’s congressional seat on Thursday, a move former President Donald Trump applauded on Friday.

Why it matters: "Congressional leaders rarely involve themselves in primary races against sitting members," the N.Y. Times reports.

Details: McCarthy backed Harriet Hageman, a Republican candidate who has repeated Trump's false claims that the 2020 presidential election was stolen.

  • "Wyoming deserves to have a representative who will deliver the accountability against this Biden administration. Not a representative that they have today that works closer with Nancy Pelosi, going after Republicans instead of stopping these radical Democrats from what they're doing to this country," McCarthy said on Fox News.
  • Cheney is currently serving on the Jan. 6 special panel alongside Republican Adam Kinzinger (R-Ill.). They were censured earlier this month by the RNC.

What they're saying: Trump in a statement insulted Cheney and said she "doesn't deserve to serve in the House of Representatives."

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