Retiring GOP rep: ‘I don’t understand’ the ‘hold that President Trump has over’ Republican leaders

Retiring GOP rep: ‘I don’t understand’ the ‘hold that President Trump has over’ Republican leaders

Retiring GOP Rep. Francis RooneyLaurence (Francis) Francis RooneyRepublican Byron Donalds wins House race in Florida Live updates: Democrats seek to extend House advantage OVERNIGHT ENERGY: Environmentalists sound alarm over Barrett’s climate change comments |  Energy regulators signal support for carbon pricing in electricity markets| Methane emissions up in 2020 amid turbulent year for oil and gas MORE (Fla.) said Monday that he doesn’t understand the unquestioning loyalty some of his fellow Republicans have for President TrumpDonald John Trump Republican Philadelphia official responsible for vote counting says office getting death threats Biden will call governors, mayors about mask mandate Trump campaign voter fraud hotline flooded with prank calls MORE.

In an interview with CNN’s Jim Sciutto, the Florida congressman responded to questions pertaining to why more GOP lawmakers haven’t come forward to acknowledge former Vice President Joe BidenJoe Biden Republican Philadelphia official responsible for vote counting says office getting death threats Biden will call governors, mayors about mask mandate Trump campaign voter fraud hotline flooded with prank calls MORE’s (D) projected victory in the 2020 presidential election amid threats of legal challenges from the president.

“There will be books written about this hold that President Trump has over a lot of the Republican leadership and base, and I don’t understand it,” Rooney said Monday.

“It was never that way with previous Republican leaders, and I think the peaceful transfer of power is a critical element of our democracy,” he added.

“There will be books written about this hold that President Trump has over a lot of the Republican leadership… I don’t understand it,” says GOP @RepRooney, who has publicly congratulated Biden and Harris.

“The peaceful transfer of power is a critical element of our democracy.” pic.twitter.com/CpuE9zPxaz

— CNN Newsroom (@CNNnewsroom) November 9, 2020

A handful of Republican lawmakers including Sens. Mitt RomneyWillard (Mitt) Mitt RomneyLindsey Graham: If Trump concedes election, Republicans will ‘never’ elect another president The Memo: Trump lost but is not vanquished Washington braces for unpredictable post-election period MORE (R-Utah) and Lisa MurkowskiLisa Ann MurkowskiRepublicans split on Biden win as Trump digs in GOP senator hedges on acknowledging Biden win: ‘It’s time for the president’s lawyers to present the facts’ Five takeaways from the battle for the Senate MORE (R-Alaska) have released statements congratulating Biden on his victory, but the vast majority have remained silent amid threats of legal challenges in several states where the president trails Biden closely in votes.

Rooney, who voted against impeaching the president in January, announced his plans to depart from Congress in October of last year, months before he would be removed from the Republican Steering Committee by GOP leadership due to missed votes.

“I was honored to be asked by my sophomore class to represent them on the committee that makes decisions about the committee assignments and the leadership of the committee,” Rooney told The Hill at the time of his removal.

“Issues relating to the steering committee are supposed to be confidential, which is why I have no comment,” he added of his colleagues’ criticism.

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