Representative Stéphanie Bice’s journey reveals opportunities and dangers for the GOP in the suburbs
“The day is soon approaching when House Republicans will have to show they can lead,” said Cam Savage, a GOP strategist who served as a consultant for Bice’s 2020 campaign. “It’s one thing to be in the minority and vote ‘no’ all the time. It is a different thing to have to lead a dozen important committees, to take ownership, to pass laws through committees, through the prosecution, to negotiate with the Senate to get things done.
Stay above the fray?
As autumn approaches, the pressure on Bice within his party seems to be easing. Oklahoma GOP leaders have said nothing about him since party chairman John Bennett posted a reprimand on Facebook in May following the committee’s vote on Jan.6. Bennett’s post is now blocked in public view and he did not respond to a request for an interview.
Le Bice, which voted in January to oppose certification of the presidential result in Arizona, has repeatedly given the same explanation for its stance on both the 2020 presidential election and the Capitol Riot, positions which she reiterated in an interview with CQ Roll Call.
She said she wanted to make a statement on the integrity of state legislators’ control over how elections are administered, noting a 2020 state Supreme Court ruling that allowed voters to vote. by correspondence without having them notarized.
Voting rights advocates said the measure would protect voters during the coronavirus pandemic, but Republican state lawmakers called the decision overly judicial and rushed a party line bill to through the legislature reinstating the requirement.