Former Wyoming Congresswoman Liz Cheney rejected claims she has shown a double standard in her critiques of former President Trump and President Biden.
The anti-Trump Republican warned Monday that if Trump were elected again, he would not surround himself with the moderating voices and advisors he did in his first term, but instead essentially employ sycophants to forward his agenda.
“[W]e don’t have to guess about what next President Trump would do, because he did it before, and he would not have around him the people that were around him,” she said, adding some former aides like ex-Rep. Mark Meadows, R-N.C., will reportedly testify as witnesses in Trump’s forthcoming Atlanta trial.
“[That includes such] people that told him on January 6… that he needed to tell the mob to go home: People who told him that what he was doing was illegal. Those people won’t be around him,” she said, warning that court rulings are a fundamental safeguard of the republic, expressing concern over whether Trump could refuse to enforce countervailing rulings.
Cheney, who recently released a memoir and “warning,” “Oath & Honor,” wrote in the book that it is hard to tell whether the “story of January 6 is nearing its end or only just beginning.”
“We may have darker chapters ahead,” she wrote.
On “Special Report,” Cheney warned Trump has already signaled how his second-term executive branch would operate, saying he tried to unconstitutionally “seize power” after the 2020 election and will surely surround himself with “unethical lawyers.”
Citing a recent Wall Street Journal op-ed, anchor Bret Baier noted the paper, which is also owned by the parent company of Fox News, is not always friendly to Trump either, but had published that Biden has done exactly what critics warned Trump will do if he returns to the White House.
Baier listed several areas in which Biden or his government have been criticized for potential overreach, including student loan eradication, COVID orders, vaccine mandates, and domestic energy production restrictions.
Cheney disagreed she has not been vocal on such issues, specifically citing the energy front, which is an important issue in Wyoming.
“I think that’s a very different thing,” she cut in.
“I don’t think it’s true that I haven’t weighed in on those. And I think a lot of those if you look at the kinds of things that he’s done with respect, for example, to energy policy, with respect to setting aside lands across the West: I’ve been very vocal that I think those policies are wrong,” Cheney said.
“It’s very different from a president [like Trump],” she added, going on to cite former President Washington’s pledge of a peaceful transition of power when he voluntarily stepped down in 1797 after two terms, despite overwhelming public support.
“Every single president, Republican and Democrat, since George Washington, has ensured the peaceful transition of power. Donald Trump tried to seize power. So we can disagree with Biden policies, but the fact that he tried to seize power [and] ignored the rulings of 61 courts… [and counsels who told him] what he was saying about the election was false,” she said.
Cheney added that Trump’s tweets critiquing then-Vice President Mike Pence and the like are steps too far.
She noted she voted in concert with Trump’s political agenda 93% of the time, and defended him against controversies stemming from Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s probe, as evidence her criticisms aren’t based in politics.
In that regard, she said there are other 2024 candidates who can forward Trump-style policies without the proverbial baggage.
“You can have the policies that we all want, the policies, some of which Donald Trump put into place, some of which he didn’t – We can have conservative policies without having to torch the Constitution,” she said.
“And so what I would urge people watching today who are going to be voting in those caucuses or in those primaries, vote for somebody else, do not vote for the person who already tried to seize power.”
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