Another Republican lawmaker’s future appears less certain after taking aim at former President Donald Trump.
According to reports, U.S. Rep. Anthony Gonzalez (R-OH) is now facing calls from members of his own party to resign.
Republicans under fire
Earlier this week, Ohio Republican Party leaders voted to censure Gonzalez and a handful of other GOP legislators for “their votes to support the unconstitutional, politically motivated impeachment proceeding” against Trump in the wake of January’s riot on Capitol Hill, Mediaite reported.
Taking their criticism a step further, the state GOP also called on him to step down from Congress altogether.
Gonzalez was one of 10 House Republicans who voted alongside Democrats to impeach Trump for his supposed role in inciting the riot on Jan. 6. He was the only Ohio Republican to do so, joining the state’s four Democratic House members.
In recent months, most of the GOP lawmakers who voted for impeachment have faced similar intraparty backlash. Most notably, Rep. Liz Cheney (R-WY), who has continued to express anti-Trump rhetoric, is likely just days away from being stripped of her House leadership position.
Shortly after he cast the controversial vote, Gonzalez defended his decision in a virtual town hall event, earning rebukes from many of his constituents and praise from some others.
More challenges on the horizon
At the time, he argued that Trump had been lying to the American people about fraud in the November presidential race and, as such, his “behavior warranted an impeachment.”
It seems unlikely that Gonzalez will resign despite the calls from fellow Republicans — but he is expected to encounter a problem if he decides to run for re-election. As a result of his anti-Trump stance, he has already attracted a primary challenger, former Trump White House aide Max Miller. Making matters worse, the former president has already announced his endorsement of Miller.
“Current Rep. Anthony Gonzalez should not be representing the people of the 16th district because he does not represent their interest or their heart,” Trump said in February, according to Fox News. “Max Miller has my Complete and Total Endorsement!”
Trump’s endorsement should carry significant weight among Republican voters in Ohio, where both his 2016 and 2020 presidential campaigns proved successful.
Even if Gonzalez does not step down on his own accord, it seems probable that his days in Congress — at least as a Republican — are already numbered.