Right-wing GOP lawmaker Ken Buck cites 2020 lies and Jan 6 as he says he won’t seek re-election

Rep Ken Buck (R-CO), an archconservative Republican who voted to remove Kevin McCarthy as speaker of the House, announced he would not seek re-election.

Mr Buck spoke to MSNBC host Andrea Mitchell and cited lies about the 2020 presidential election and January 6, pushed by the GOP, as a reason he would not run for another term.

Mr Buck’s announcement comes the same day that House Appropriations Committee Chairwoman Kay Granger announced she would not run for re-election.

“I always have been disappointed with our inability in Congress to deal with major issues and I’m also disappointed that the Republican Party continues to, you know, rely on this lie that the 2020 election was stolen and rely on the January 6th narrative and the political prisoners from January 6th and other things,” he said.

Many Republicans have said that January 6 rioters are being politically persecuted and treated worse than other inmates in prison.

“If we’re going to solve difficult problems, we’ve got to deal with some very unpleasant truths or lies and make sure project to the public what the truth is,” he said.

Mr Buck voted to make Mr McCarthy speaker in January, but he later turned on Mr McCarthy and joined seven other Republicans and every Democrat last month to eject Mr McCarthy. A former chairman of the Colorado Republican Party, Mr Buck previously worked as a district attorney.

On January 6, Mr Buck voted to certify the 2020 presidential election results while 138 Republicans in the House voted to overturn the results.

Shortly after Mr McCarthy’s removal, Mr Buck confronted both House Majority Leader Steve Scalise and Rep Jim Jordan, both then candidates for speaker, about whether President Joe Biden won the 2020 election.

During the floor votes, Mr Buck voted against Mr Jordan despite them both being members of the House Freedom Caucus. But Mr Buck voted to make Mike Johnson, who had led an amicus brief with many other House Republicans for a court case to overturn the election results, speaker of the House.

-Andrew Feinberg contributed reporting