Anthony Gonzalez is retiring. Here’s what happened to House Republicans who voted to impeach Trump.
“1 down, 9 to go,” Trump said in a statement after Gonzalez’s announcement.
The other nine Republicans in the House have also faced backlash, including from Trump, members of their party and threats of main challenge. But they are also well placed as their campaigns have raised more money in most races than their main challengers.
After Gonzalez’s announcement, Representative Liz Cheney, who had also voted to impeach Trump, tweeted: “On Constitution Day, Donald Trump’s statement about Representative Anthony Gonzalez reminds us all, once again , that Trump is at war with the Constitution. “
In a statement announcing his decision, Gonzalez cited “toxic dynamics” within the Republican Party.
“While my desire to build a fuller family life is at the heart of my decision, it is also true that the current state of our politics, especially most of the toxic dynamics within our own party, is a factor. important in my decision, ”he said.
Representative Liz Cheney from Wyoming
Cheney has come under heavy criticism from Wyoming to Washington since he voted to impeach Trump for “incitement to insurgency” after a pro-Trump mob attacked the Capitol on January 6 in an attempt to prevent Congress to certify the results of the 2020 election. Subsequently, Cheney said that Trump had “summoned”, “assembled” and “ignited the flame of this attack” and that “there had never been more great betrayal by a President of the United States of his office and his oath to the Constitution “.
The Wyoming Republican Party then censored her, and after repeatedly calling Trump’s “big lie” that the 2020 election was stolen, House Republicans ousted her from her post as President of the House. the conference.
These measures sent a high-profile message about the priorities of the Republican Party, its continued loyalty to the former president, and the limited extent to which he is prepared to tolerate dissent. After a months-long search for a challenger for Cheney, Trump last week endorsed former Wyoming Republican National Committee member Harriet Hageman.
Illinois Representative Adam Kinzinger
Kinzinger has been in the spotlight nationally since his impeachment vote and has become one of the main critics of the Republican Party’s adherence to Trump’s “Big Lie” and other conspiracy theories.
The effort has already encountered challenges. He recently endorsed a Texas GOP congressional candidate Michael Wood, who ran unsuccessfully in a crowded field on a platform calling on Republicans to turn away from Trump and reject conspiracy theories.
“I think what’s important is that people see that there are people out there who support you, who will support you if you do the right thing,” Kinzinger told CNN of the approval. “It’s a long-term battle for the soul of the party.”
Kinzinger was censored by several Illinois County GOP organizations and drew a main pro-Trump challenger, Catalina Lauf, who said she was running against him, arguing he had “betrayed his constituents” and criticizing his impeachment vote.
Representative John Katko from New York
John Katko has been criticized by Trump and local GOP leaders in his home state of New York following his impeachment vote. But he has shown a unique ability to win his district even though the Democratic presidential candidates have won.
In the run-up to the vote to oust Cheney from her post as House No. 3 Republican, Katko has said he will support GOP Representative Elise Stefanik, another New York lawmaker. “I have no doubts that Elise will be a great leader for our entire conference, not just some,” Katko told The Auburn Citizen, though he also called Cheney a “good friend.”
The congressman maintained his impeachment vote, telling CNN in February, “Hell no,” when asked if he regretted Trump’s impeachment vote.
In August, John Murtari, software engineer and Air Force veteran, became the first Republican to challenge Katko.
Representative Fred Upton from Michigan
In September, Trump backed Michigan State Representative Steve Carra in a challenge to Upton, whom the former president called “RINO” or “Republican in name only.”
Upton also faced reprimand from Republicans at the state level following his impeachment vote.
When he announced he would vote for impeachment, Upton said in a statement, “Congress must hold President Trump to account and send a clear message that our country cannot and will not tolerate any effort from the side. a president to prevent the peaceful transfer of power from one president to another. “
Washington Representative Jaime Herrera Beutler
In Herrera Beutler’s home state, Washington, the state’s Republican Central Committee passed a resolution condemning Trump’s impeachment “without question or exception” and expressing disappointment with Congressman and Representative Dan Newhouse, another Republican from Washington who voted for impeachment.
Herrera Beutler also said she was “not worried” about a potential main challenger.
“There are a lot of Republicans who disagree with me on this, and I totally respect that,” Herrera Beutler said at the time. “They don’t expect you to agree with them on everything, but they want to be able to trust you.”
One challenger, Joe Kent, a retired U.S. Army Special Forces officer and husband of Gold Star, told CNN in July: “I think Trump won, but I want to prove it.” He described himself as a “first American Republican” and confronted the congressman specifically for her impeachment vote, saying she “no longer represents the values of our community.” He speaks at a right-wing rally on September 18 in support of those who attacked the Capitol on January 6.
“All Americans have the right to due process, political prisoners on J6 have been denied due process for 9 months,” Kent told CNN. “All Americans should be outraged that this is happening and that so few of our political leaders have spoken out against it.”
Washington Representative Dan Newhouse
“Can I say that’s a stupid question?” The congressman said when asked if he had any after receiving a reaction from Trump supporters. “I do not regret it.”
In late January, Newhouse rejected a call for his resignation from a number of county GOP leaders.
“I am not resigning,” Newhouse said, according to the spokesperson-Review. “Many Republicans agree with my vote, and many disagree. For those who disagree with me on this issue, I hope they will remember my long-standing support to conservative causes and values. “
Newhouse also faces the threat of a main challenge. A Republican opponent seeking to overthrow him, Loren Culp, stressed his support for Trump and said on his campaign website that the district “should be represented by a constitutional conservative who will always put America first.” But Culp only raised about $ 23,000, according to the latest FEC data available, far less than what Newhouse raised.
Representative Peter Meijer from Michigan
Meijer was censored by county groups in the GOP, and Tom Norton, the third in a 2020 primary won by Meijer in western Michigan, said he was running again, citing the impeachment vote of the congressman.
In an interview with CNN earlier this year, Meijer expressed his fear that baseless conspiracy theories like QAnon would destroy the GOP from within if Republicans do not decisively and unequivocally condemn false and dangerous beliefs and take measures to stop their spread.
“When we say QAnon, you have the kind of extreme forms, but you also just have this softer, gradual attack on any collective and shared sense of truth,” Meijer said.
The Michigan freshman believes conspiracy theories are fueling “incredibly unrealistic and unachievable expectations” and “a cycle of disillusion and alienation” that could cause Tory voters to skip the election or, in the worst case, to turn to political violence, like what happened on January 6.
Representative Tom Rice from South Carolina
Rice has also faced headwinds in her home state over his impeachment position, and a number of Republicans have launched campaigns to occupy his seat representing a red district in the northeastern state.
Rice told CNN in February he was maintaining his vote. “In eight years in Congress, I’ve probably had a hundred votes that I could have gone both ways, and I maybe guessed a little,” he said. “He’s not one of them.”
Representative David Valadao from California
Valadao of California also faced the threat of a main challenge in a swing neighborhood.
The “problems” page of a website started by candidate Chris Mathys, a former Fresno city councilor, includes only three sentences targeting the congressman’s impeachment vote. But Mathys, who has said he believes Trump won the 2020 election, raised just $ 12,300 in the second quarter of 2021 and gave his campaign a loan of $ 100,000. Valadao raised over $ 482,000 in those three months, and had close to $ 820,000 – Mathys’ quadruple number.