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Tipsheet

Sensing the End of Her Career, Liz Cheney Betrays GOP Even More

AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite

Earlier this week, the soon-to-be-former Rep. Liz Cheney (R-WY) appeared on NBC News' "Meet the Press," during which the possibility of former President Donald Trump appearing live before the January 6 select committee came up. The demand was formally sent out last Friday. 

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Cheney, who has become a particularly vocal critic of Trump, claimed the problem with Trump started when he was first elected. "I think that there's no question that the – his election as president in 2016 began something that's been very dangerous for this nation," she claimed. "And we now see he's willing to do everything he needs to do, everything within his power, to stop the peaceful transition of power. And he can never be president again."

Surprisingly, Cheney was not asked until the very end of the segment about running for president in 2024, potentially against Trump. Todd even buttered her up, by mentioning "some people," who went unnamed, "suggest if you were a third party candidate, it would be enough to stop Trump." While she did not outright commit to running, something she has teased before, she reiterated "we will do whatever it takes, as I said" and that Trump "will not be the President of the United States again," despite how that's for voters to decide. 

Cheney offered they are "anticipating that the former president will understand his legal obligation, will comply with the subpoena," and even tried to beg viewers to go to the committee's website to read the subpoena and the letter to Trump with it. 

When Todd tried to tease out of Cheney as to if Trump's testimony would be live, Cheney claimed, with a straight face, that "the committee treats this matter with great seriousness" and "we are going to proceed in terms of the questioning of the former president under oath," emphasizing that "it will be done with a level of rigor and discipline and seriousness that it deserves." Cheney again later spoke of supposed "seriousness," claiming what the committee had to hear from Trump "is far too serious set of issues."

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In the back-and-forth on Trump speaking, Cheney doubled down, insisting Trump was "not going to turn this into a circus" or a "food fight." 

As Katie warned not long after the subpoena was announced earlier this month, having Trump testify could very well backfire. 

The select committee and Trump were not discussed until the end of the interview, though. The segment was laughable from the start, as Todd claimed he wouldn't presume, but then presumed to know what Cheney's most important issue is when it comes to voting. "I don't want to presume anything, but is your number one issue threats to democracy, as a voter," he asked, which the congresswoman confirmed. 

As the last issue discussed in the segment, Todd and Cheney made the argument about how whether or not the January 6 select committee will continue--which it is not likely to do--should be on the ballot. Polls consistently show, though, that voters care more so about economic issues, such as inflation. 

"Look, I think it's very important to take politics out of it. The committee is investigating and proceeding in a way that is not partisan at all. I think that, as people go in to vote, they need to recognize that there are certain candidates who are anti-democracy. They need to recognize that election deniers are anti-democracy, and they should not vote for those people," Cheney claimed. 

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Such a point is laughable, though, given that the committee has been particularly political, and partisan, given that only members selected by the majority party are serving. 

Before they addressed the select committee, though, the two relitigated her primary loss in August, which involved "election deniers," including Republican nominee Harriet Hageman, who beat Cheney. 

Cheney even threw fellow Republicans under the bus for their "indefensible decisions," such as the Republican gubernatorial nominee in Arizona, Kari Lake, as well as Gov. Glenn Youngkin (R-VA), who has dared to campaign for her so as to help elect fellow Republicans.  

Other names included the Republican gubernatorial nominees in Pennsylvania and Maryland, with Todd asking Cheney "how do you blow that up in the party?"

Despite how primary voters duly elected these candidates, Cheney doubled down on the need to purge them:

Well, I think you've got to remind people that everybody has an obligation – and obligation to defend the constitution, an obligation to do what's right. And so right now you've got a lot of Republicans in particular, Democrats do the same thing, it just happens that our candidates are more dangerous right now, but you have got a lot of Republicans who are saying, "You know what? I'm going to ignore the threat posed by the former president who attempted to use force to stop – to overturn an election, to stop the count of electoral votes. I'm going to ignore that. I'm going to ignore these people who embrace him. I'm going to ignore the danger, and I'm just going to focus on the near term: is the Republican Party going to prevail?"

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When addressing how House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) is likely to become the next Speaker of the House, should Republicans win control of the House, as they are projected to do, Cheney also turned to Democratic talking points. In addition to signifying McCarthy would "make himself the leader of the pro-Putin wing" of the Republican Party, Cheney declared that he is "willing to go down the path of suggesting that America will no longer stand for freedom," suggesting "he's willing to sacrifice everything for his own political gain."

As usual, Rep. Cheney sought to make herself out to be the principled person in the party, despite the deep political intent of the select committee and her seeking to be the arbiter of who is part of the Republican Party. 

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