Former Vice President Dick Cheney came out swinging against Donald Trump and the “MAGA” wing of the GOP in an ad released by his daughter, Congresswoman Liz Cheney as she faces the toughest election of her political career.
Mr Cheney held nothing back in his criticism of the former president, who he blamed for leading a violent attempt to overthrow the lawful US government and labeled the greatest threat to the United States in the more than two-century history of the republic.
"In our nation’s 246-year history, there has never been an individual who is a greater threat to our republic than Donald Trump,” the ex-vice president and former Republican leader said in the ad released this week, sternly looking directly into the camera.
“He tried to steal the last election using lies and violence to keep himself in power after the voters had rejected him,” said Mr Cheney, who added that he believed most Republicans knew deep down that Mr Trump’s conspiracies about the 2020 election were baseless.
The warnings are likely to fall on deaf ears in Ms Cheney’s district, where a former staffer, Harriet Hageman, is challenging the congresswoman for her seat and by all pollings’ measuring is likely to trounce the incumbent in two weeks. One survey released last month indicated that Ms Hageman could win by as much as 20 points.
But the far-right GOP primary electorate aside, the video is a sign of how hardened the old guard of the GOP has become against Donald Trump and his efforts to retain control of the party heading in to 2024, especially after January 6.
Many prominent GOP figures who have left politics over the past decade, such as ex-House Speaker Paul Ryan, have thrown their support behind the few Republicans in the House and Senate who supported Mr Trump’s second impeachment while the party’s leading candidates across the country continue to veer in the opposite direction.
Her lone fellow Republican on the January 6 committee, Rep Adam Kinzinger, declined to even stand for reelection this year as he faced the same political reality of battling an opponent with Donald Trump’s endorsement in his primary were he to run.
Opposing the former president’s lies about the 2020 election and attempt to block the peaceful transfer of power from his administration to Joe Biden’s remains a risky prospect for Republicans; in June, South Carolina Congressman Tom Rice lost the GOP nomination for his seat to a Trump-backed challenger over his own support of the second impeachment effort.
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