The comments from Hogan come as Republican lawmakers prepare to oust Wyoming Rep. Liz Cheney from her position as GOP conference chair and amid infighting within the party over whether to continue to follow Trump, who has also called for her removal. The Republican governor, an outspoken critic of Trump, told NBC’s Chuck Todd on “Meet The Press” that most GOP leadership does not hold Trump accountable because “they’re concerned about retaliation” from the former President.
“They’re concerned about being attacked within the party. It just bothers me that you have to swear fealty to the dear leader or you get kicked out of the party. It just doesn’t make any sense,” Hogan said. “It’s sort of a circular firing squad where we’re just attacking members of our own party instead of focusing on solving problems or standing up and having an argument that we can debate the Democrats on some of the things that the Biden administration is pushing through.”
“Look, we had the worst four years we’ve had ever in the Republican party, losing the White House, the House of Representatives and the Senate, and successful politics is about addition and multiplication not subtraction and division,” Hogan continued.
Cheney, the daughter of former Vice President Dick Cheney, was one of 10 House Republicans to vote to impeach Trump in January and survived a February vote to keep her leadership position 145 to 61. But she hasn’t backed down from her criticisms of Trump’s election lies, and her continued arguments that the party should move on from the former President have become too much for House Republicans who see him as a crucial part of their winning coalition.
House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy voiced his support for New York Rep. Elise Stefanik in the leadership position, who also was publicly endorsed by Trump.
The term-limited Maryland governor, who some say could emerge as a GOP leader on the national stage, also said it’s time for the GOP to get back to winning elections and be a party that “appeals to a broader group of people” after losing political control in Washington.