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GOP Lawmaker Says He Plans To Challenge Stefanik for Conference Chair

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Rep. Chip Roy (R-Texas) is planning to challenge Rep. Elise Stefanik (R-N.Y.) for the Republican House Conference chair.

CNN’s Annie Grayer reported that Roy said he plans to run for the post to replace Rep. Liz Cheney (R-Wyo.), who was ousted by House Republicans after she was critical of former President Donald Trump.

Speaking to reporters, Roy said, “I do believe [Stefanik] should have an opponent.”

“One of my biggest problems is that we’re not taking the time to have this conversation that we ought to have,” he added.

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Stefanik has received the support of House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.), House Minority Whip Steve Scalise (R-La.), and Trump to replace Cheney.

However, Roy raised concerns about replacing Cheney with Stefanik.

In a memo to his colleagues earlier this week, Roy said, “We must avoid putting in charge Republicans who campaign as Republicans but then vote for and advance the Democrats’ agenda once sworn in – that is, that we do not make the same mistakes we did in 2017.”

“Therefore, with all due respect to my friend, Elise Stefanik, let us contemplate the message Republican leadership is about to send by rushing to coronate a spokesperson whose voting record embodies much of what led to the 2018 ass-kicking we received by Democrats,” he added.

The Texas Congressman suggested that House Republicans should consider not even finding a replacement for Cheney and simply leaving the position unfilled.

While Roy said he views Cheney as a friend, he argued that she “forfeited her ability to be our spokesperson by pulling us into this direction.”

“From a position designed to speak for all of us, she has been looking backwards while repeatedly and unhelpfully engaging in personal attacks and finger-wagging towards President Trump rather than leading the conference forward with a unifying message,” he explained.

Trump weighed in on Roy’s planned bid for the position in statement. He said, “Can’t imagine Republican House Members would go with Chip Roy — he has not done a great job, and will probably be successfully primaried in his own district. I support Elise, by far, over Chip!”

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