EXCLUSIVE: WI GOP County Chairs Turn Their Backs on Gallagher after Mayorkas vote, say they are considering alternative candidates

Feb 10, 2024 | Political News

After GOP Wisconsin Rep. Mike Gallagher voted against the impeachment of Biden's Department of Homeland Security Sec. Alejandro Mayorkas, Republican chairs in Wisconsin have turned their backs on the congressman and may choose alternative candidates.  

Three Republican representatives torpedoed the vote to impeach Mayorkas on Tuesday as the US is facing a record-breaking illegal immigration crisis. Gallagher was one of those three and he then wrote a Wall Street Journal op-ed to explain his reasoning.  

On Friday, a memo from two Wisconsin GOP chairmen to Gallagher stated that his actions were a “disappointment” and that they will “decide which direction to take in order to keep [their] parties strong as [they] move forward and recover” from the congressman’s vote, indicating they may look for other candidates for the district.  

Oconto County Chairman Ken Sikora, as well as Waupaca County Chairman Joel Bartel, sent the memo to Gallagher on Friday. In another report from Thursday, Sikora wrote that he would not “tolerate or support someone who will not follow his constitutional duties and the wishes of his constituents.”

The aftermath of Gallagher's decision not to impeach Mayorkas led to the county offices' time being “consumed by numerous unhappy constituents' calls, letters, emails and office visits.” 

A meeting between the chairmen and Gallagher scheduled for Saturday was also canceled as a result of his decision. 

“We have all seen the Wall Street Journal piece and have had conversations with your staff on the reasonings behind your decision, we respectfully disagree. It has been very clear to us that our constituents also disagree, and at the end of the day that's who we represent. This was a moment to unite the district between party leaders and our congressman. We can not put into words how disappointing this situation has been,” the memo read. 

In the WSJ op-ed, Gallagher wrote that Mayorkas' “incompetence” does not reach the level of “high crimes or misdemeanors.” He later compared the vote to the previous impeachment attempts on former President Donald Trump in 2019 and 2021, writing that those attempts were a “rushed, hyperpartisan process that lowered the bar for what constitutes an impeachable offense.” He also added that it would only “pry open the Pandora’s box of perpetual impeachment.”