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Tom Rice Loses South Carolina Primary to Trump-Backed Rival

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Representative Tom Rice, a staunch conservative who voted to question former President Donald J. Trump for fomenting the Jan. 6 attack on the Capitol, was defeated Tuesday by a Trump-endorsed primary challenger, the primary of the ten House Republicans who backed impeachment to check the need of the first voters and lose.

Mr. Rice’s loss to State Representative Russell Fry signifies that half of the ten Republicans who voted to question won’t return to Congress next yr, and that number is prone to grow. Along with Mr. Rice, 4 other House Republicans selected to retire moderately than face the pro-Trump core of the Republican electorate.

Mr. Fry put Mr. Rice’s impeachment vote at the middle of his campaign within the conservative Seventh Congressional District, which runs along the North Carolina border to the Atlantic Ocean. And Mr. Trump rallied with Mr. Fry by his side.

But Mr. Rice, whose defeat was called by The Associated Press, never shrank from his impeachment vote. “I did it then,” he told The Recent York Times in an interview last week. “And I’ll do it tomorrow. And I’ll do it the subsequent day or the day after that. I actually have an obligation to uphold the Structure. And that’s what I did.”

Mr. Fry called the vote a betrayal, writing on his campaign website, in a reference to the nicknames of the district’s river and coastal regions, “Tom Rice broke the trust of the people of the Pee Dee and Grand Strand when he voted to question President Donald Trump.”

For all of the talk of Mr. Trump’s grip loosening on the party, the defeat of a conservative Republican who almost never strayed from the party orthodoxy will send a message to other Republicans tempted to defy the previous president. Representatives Adam Kinzinger of Illinois, Anthony Gonzalez of Ohio, Fred Upton of Michigan and John Katko of Recent York all retired moderately than face the voters after their impeachment decisions.

One Republican impeachment voter appears poised to survive the first season, Representative David Valadao of California, and others will soon be tested: Liz Cheney of Wyoming, Peter Meijer of Michigan and Dan Newhouse and Jaime Herrera Beutler of Washington, all who face Trump-endorsed Republican challengers.

Mr. Rice became an unlikely hero of the anti-Trump movement, a hard-core conservative who was defiant in his contempt for the previous president. When Mr. Trump rallied against him in March, he responded with a press release saying, “Trump is here because, like nobody else I’ve ever met, he’s consumed by spite. I took one vote he didn’t like and now he’s chosen to support a yes-man who has and can bow to anything he says, regardless of what.”

Maya King contributed reporting.

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