Sane Vampires and Unrecorded Votes — more notes on a defenestration

Writing Tuesday night (we don't actually get up at six a.m. to post these) on the Cheney affair, we pointed out that Republican officials were caught between needing to distance themselves from an increasingly toxic leader and having to appease a cult-of-personality base that will tolerate no sign of disloyalty.

Yesterday, Josh Marshall explained how the sane vampires of the GOP are trying to cope:

The big story is that Liz Cheney was ousted from her leadership position for not supporting the Big Lie of the stolen election and for not endorsing the insurrection. But we knew that was coming. The big story today had to do with how the vote was held. These are usually recorded votes and secret ballots. That was the case last month when Cheney retained her position by a decisive margin. Today it was a voice vote. After the vote, as Tierney Sneed notes here, a request for a recorded vote was denied.

This tells you the real story of what happened here.

To be clear, I’m confident that Cheney would have been defeated in a secret ballot. I’m not saying there’s a secret pro-Cheney or anti-Trump majority. But I’m pretty sure the vote wouldn’t have been as decisive as Kevin McCarthy and Donald Trump wanted. That’s why they didn’t take a recorded vote.

When asked why there wasn’t a recorded vote, Rep. Jim Jordan, a prime mover of Cheney’s ouster, said the voice vote was “overwhelming” and that “you can’t have a conference chair (Read more...)