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House Republican leader Kevin McCarthy formally backs Stefanik over Liz Cheney

House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy.
House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy.Jacquelyn Martin/Associated Press

House Republican Leader Kevin McCarthy said he would support New York Representative Elise Stefanik’s bid to replace Liz Cheney as GOP conference chair in a vote this week.

“Everyone in leadership serves at the pleasure of the conference,” McCarthy said on Fox News’ “Sunday Morning Futures.” “We want to be united in looking forward and I think that’s what will take place.”

Fox correspondent Maria Bartiromo asked McCarthy if he backs Stefanik for the job, which is the number three post in the House Republican leadership.

“Yes I do,” McCarthy said.

Cheney has clashed with many in her party after voting in favor of former President Donald Trump’s impeachment in January, one of 10 House Republicans to do so. Trump has repeatedly criticized the Wyoming lawmaker and daughter of former Vice President Dick Cheney since.

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Punchbowl News reported last week that McCarthy was backing Stefanik’s bid, but Sunday’s comments take the move to oust Cheney a step further. House Minority Whip Steve Scalise, the second-in-line to McCarthy, earlier expressed his support for Stefanik in a statement.

The vote is expected to take place Wednesday.