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Rep. Dan Crenshaw, R-Texas, took aim at members of the House Freedom Caucus, calling the group “grifters” and “performance artists.”
“Lie after lie after lie because they know something psychologically about the conservative heart: We’re worried about what people are going to do to us, what they’re going to infringe upon us — that’s the nature of conservatism,” Crenshaw said during an appearance at an event hosted by the Texas Liberty Alliance PAC last week.
The House Freedom Caucus is made up of members of Crenshaw’s own party, including high-profile Reps. Matt Gaetz, R-Fla. and Jim Jordan, R-Ohio. The group also has several members from Crenshaw’s home state of Texas, such as Reps. Michael Cloud, Louie Gohmert, Chip Roy, Randy Weber, and Ron Wright.
But Crenshaw accused the group of not being authentic conservatives, arguing instead that they succeed in grabbing attention by repeating slogans.
“They’re the ones you think are more conservative because they know how to say slogans real well,” Crenshaw said. “They know how to recite the lines that they know our voters want to hear.”
The Texas lawmaker also accused the group of failing to fully support former President Donald Trump‘s agenda, saying that even famously anti-Trump Rep. Adam Kinzinger voted with Trump “99 percent” of the time.
The House Freedom Caucus was formed in 2015, with Jordan serving as the group’s first chair. It grew to 40 members by October of that year, but currently sits at 29 members.
According to an analysis done by the Pew Research Center, the group’s members are typically more conservative than the average Republican lawmaker.