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The vast majority of 10 House Republicans who voted to impeach former President Trump have been denied re-election or retired; the last of that group — Rep. Liz Cheney, R-Wyo. — is in the fight of her political career in Wyoming’s primary election Tuesday.
After the 10 Republican House members voted to impeach Trump for his role in the Jan. 6 riots — where pro-Trump demonstrators attacked the U.S. Capitol as the House and Senate were voting to certify President Biden’s 2020 presidential win — Trump made it his mission to defeat those who he viewed as betraying his “America First” message.
Of the 10 GOP members on Trump’s target list, seven have already lost their primaries or chose to retire, and only two survived a difficult primary challenge to become the Republican nominee in the November general election.
Rep. Liz Cheney, R-Wyo.
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Cheney was the highest-profile Republican to favor impeachment as the House Republican conference chair. With encouragement from Trump and his allies, the GOP booted Cheney from the leadership role.
Trump backed Cheney’s primary challenger, Harriet Hageman, early on in her campaign, and recent polls show her with a massive lead over the incumbent Republican representative, who is one of two Republicans on the House committee investigating the Jan. 6 attack.
Tuesday’s primary is all but certain to show Cheney the door, and the daughter of former Vice President Dick Cheney has already hinted at looking beyond the November election.
Rep. Jaime Herrera Beutler, R-Wash.
Herrera Beutler conceded her race in Washington State’s open primary on Aug. 9, as Republican Joe Kent, who received Trump’s endorsement, secured a spot on the November general election ballot.
The impeachment vote was a big part of the race, with Kent painting Beutler as no different from a Democrat.
“Rep. Beutler voted for the impeachment of President Trump based on a false narrative that Trump inspired an armed insurrection against the Capitol,” Kent told Fox News in an email. “But the facts don’t matter to the left or Rep. Beutler.”
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Kent said in an interview with Fox News that part of the reason he supports Trump is that the former president took steps to remove American troops from Syria. He experienced the personal tragedy of America’s involvement in the Middle East when his wife, Navy Senior Chief Petty Officer Shannon Kent, was killed in Syria on Jan. 16, 2019.
Rep. Peter Meijer, R-Mich.
Meijer lost his primary on Aug. 2 to a Trump-backed opponent, John Gibbs, but it was not just the former president’s influence that tipped the scales. Meijer also blamed the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee’s (DCCC) meddling that boosted the Trump-endorsed candidate.
Meijer said Sunday that the DCCC’s decision to meddle in the GOP House primary for Michigan’s 3rd District was “risky” and “paints a very telling picture of where our politics are in 2022.”
“So, we had a scenario where not only did I have the former president aligned against me, but in a rare showing of bipartisan unity, Nancy Pelosi and the House Democratic Campaign Committee also united to try to knock me off the ballot, Meijer told CBS News’ “Face the Nation.”
Rep. Tom Rice, R-S.C.
Rice conceded his race to Trump-backed challenger and state Rep. Russell Fry in South Carolina’s June 14 primary.
Fry had told Fox News he would not have run against Rice in deep-red South Carolina if the congressman had not voted for impeachment. “I think the impeachment is the big elephant in the room and the voters are incredibly frustrated by that,” Fry said.
FACING PRIMARY CHALLENGE OVER HIS IMPEACHMENT VOTE, SOUTH CAROLINA’S RICE SAYS HE ‘UPHELD’ CONSTITUTION
Rep. Adam Kinzinger, R-Ill.
Kinzinger opted to not seek re-election, announcing in October that he would not campaign for his seat.
“I want to make it clear, this isn’t the end of my political future but the beginning,” Kinzinger said when he announced he wouldn’t run for Congress. “Let me be clear, my passion for this country has only grown. My desire to make a difference is bigger than it’s ever been.”
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Like Cheney, Kinzinger also serves on the Jan. 6 committee.
Rep. John Katko, R-N.Y.
Katko announced in January that he would not seek re-election in his central New York district, claiming it was “so that I can enjoy my family and life in a fuller and more present way.”
Rep. Fred Upton, R-Mich.
Upton announced his retirement on the House floor in April, after facing censure from his own state GOP for his impeachment vote.
“Hopefully, civility and bipartisanship vs. discord can rule, not rue, the day,” Upton said in his retirement announcement.
Rep. Anthony Gonzalez, R-Ohio
Rep. Anthony Gonzalez, the Ohio Republican who voted to impeach former President Trump, announced Thursday that he will not seek re-election, citing the “toxic dynamics inside” the Republican Party.
Gonzalez faced a well-financed challenger in former Trump aide Max Miller, who is the GOP nomination for the seat.
Miller told Fox News that “weak Republicans” like Gonzalez “need to see the door and have an exit.” Miller said Trump endorsed him because “he knows that I am not ever going to fold or take a knee, and I will continue to fight for the people and the America First agenda no matter at what cost.”
Rep. David Valadao, R-Calif.
Valadao is the only Republican not targeted by Trump in his primary. He survived his primary challenger, Chris Mathys, an Army veteran and former member of the Fresno City Council, to secure a spot on the November ballot.
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Though he voted for impeachment, he did not double down as other pro-impeachment Republicans did, which may have helped him avoid Trump’s wrath.
“All the other ones are going out and making hay, elongating the story. Valadao’s stayed rather quiet and subdued,” a source close to Trump’s political orbit told Fox News.
Rep. Dan Newhouse, R-Wash.
Unlike fellow Washington State Republican Rep. Jaime Herrera Beutler, Newhouse survived his own challenge from the right to win a spot on the November ballot.
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He came under fire for his impeachment vote and faced calls to resign from Republicans in his district but ultimately got more votes than Trump-backed former GOP gubernatorial candidate Loren Culp in the August primary.
Fox News’ Paul Steinhauser, Andrew Murray, Evie Fordham, Tyler Olson and Joseph. A. Wulfsohn contributed to this report.
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