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Elise Stefanik/Facebook

A ruthless thirst for power has driven Elise Stefanik to the far-right fringe

Something seems to have jostled Stefanik to the fringe between 2019 and 2021.


Claire Goforth


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Dirty Delete

Rep. Elise Stefanik (R-N.Y.) came to Congress to get her hard-right swerve on.

Stefanik was elected as a moderate but has drifted increasingly further right over the years.

According to Five Thirty Eight, Steafanik voted against former President Donald Trump’s positions nearly 25% of the time—significantly more often than Rep. Liz Cheney (R-Wyo.), whom she replaced as chair of the House Republican Caucus after the latter fell out of favor in Trump world.

Something seems to have jostled Stefanik to the fringe between 2019 and 2021.

In 2019, she broke ranks with her fellow Republicans to vote for equal rights for LGBTQ people. Two years later, Stefanik voted the opposite.

Stefanik later tried to help Trump overturn the 2020 election results. So perhaps that was her turning point. Now she’s all in with the far-right.

This year, she used the racist “great replacement” theory in her campaign ads and implied that undocumented immigrant babies should starve. Her Twitter account is practically dedicated to calling anyone to the left of Mussolini a “socialist.”

The right-wing Heritage Foundation rates Stefanik’s conservatism at 88%—higher than Sen. Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) but lower than Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Tex.), who rank 63% and 98% respectively.

Give it a few years and the woman who once was an aide to centrist then-Rep. Paul Ryan (R-Wisc.) might work her way up to Cruz’s blind fealty to the party line.

After all, Twitter records show that Stefanik didn’t have anything to say about Trump until 2018. Nowadays she’s practically running a Trump stan account.

This isn’t an accident. Stefanik carefully manages her online persona. She really likes deleting tweets. According to ProPublica, she’s fast approaching the 1,000-deleted tweets threshold—truly an accomplishment.

In addition to Twitter, Stefanik is on Gettr, Telegram, Truth Social, and Facebook.

Why it matters

Stefanik is a climber with a thirst for power and a taste for betrayal. A few short years ago, she was gushing about her “friend and colleague” Liz Cheney.

When Cheney chose country over party, Stefanik stabbed her “amazing” pal in the back by endorsing Cheney’s primary opponent, who ultimately won.

Stefanik clearly doesn’t care what she has to say or who she has to step on to get where she’s going.

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