Things got heated on “Fox News Sunday” yesterday after host Chris Wallace confronted Rep. Jim Banks (R-IN), asking him if he thinks it’s “a lie the election was stolen?”
Banks, chairman of the Republican Study Committee, has been leading the charge in trying to oust Rep. Liz Cheney (R-WY) from her leadership position for voting to impeach former President Donald Trump earlier this year. He has previously described Cheney continually attacking Trump as “an unwelcome distraction,” adding that “this idea that you just disregard President Trump is not where” the GOP is.
“I know the belief that I have, that a majority of our conference have, that she has lost focus on the single mission that we have in winning back the majority, to push back against the radical Biden agenda, is the reason that she needs to be replaced,” Banks told Wallace when asked about Cheney.
After saying that he was going to “try to get at this a different way,” Wallace asked Banks if he thinks Biden is the legitimate president.
“Yes, Joe Biden was elected. He was inaugurated on January 20,” Banks replied, but this did not seem to satisfy Wallace.
“Do you still question whether or not Joe Biden won the election fair and square and got over 270 electoral votes, fair and square?” the Fox News host pressed on.
“I stand by my vote to object on January 6 and stand by the Texas lawsuit. I have serious concerns about how the election in November was carried out,” Banks responded. “That is where most Republicans in the GOP conference are unified around that single mission and goal and anything that distracts from it will hold us back from doing that.”
Things started to get heated when Banks said “every Republican denounced” the violence of the Capitol riot after Wallace asked if he thinks House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) bears some responsibility for what went down.
“I’m just asking a question,” Wallace fired back. “Liz Cheney is saying it’s a big lie to say the election was stolen. Liz Cheney is saying that, in fact, Donald Trump contributed to the riot. I’m asking you for your opinion on those issues. Is it a lie that the election was stolen? Did he contribute to the insurrection on the Capitol?”
Banks replied by saying he “never said the election was stolen,” before adding that he has “very serious concerns with how the election was conducted last November” and that he’ll “never apologize” for objecting to the election results.
“When Liz Cheney says history’s watching and you upon can’t go forward until you resolve this question—the election was fair and square, Donald Trump played a negative role—you think she’s misguided making those points?” Wallace asked.
“Yeah, I’ve called on Liz Cheney to rejoin the Republican team and help us go out and win a majority in the midterm election,” Banks said. “That is where my frustration bubbled up.”