Liz Cheney hits fellow Republicans for following 'dangerous and irrational' Donald Trump

WASHINGTON – Rep. Liz Cheney, R-Wyo., rejoined her battle with Donald Trump on Tuesday, condemning Republican leaders for following a "dangerous and irrational man" who is at "war with the rule of law and the Constitution."

Noting that public officials swear an oath to defend the U.S. Constitution, Cheney told a crowd at a speaking event in New Hampshire that "too many political leaders seem to have forgotten the sacred nature of that oath" in failing to speak against Trump's lies regarding the outcome of the 2020 presidential election.

Cheney said the nation is confronting "a domestic threat that we've never faced before: A former president who's attempting to unravel the foundations of our constitutional republic, aided by political leaders who have made themselves willing hostages to this dangerous and irrational man."

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Cheney noted that Trump delivered a keynote address at a House Republican campaign fundraiser on Monday night. Trump, she said, repeated his false claims about voter fraud and claimed that the real insurrection was on Election Day in November, while the Jan. 6 riot was a justified protest.

"Political leaders who sit silent in the face of these false and dangerous claims are aiding a former president who is at war with the rule of law and the Constitution," she said, and are risking more violence in the future.

Trump is has made Cheney a top political target after she and nine other House Republicans voted to impeach him for inciting the Jan. 6 riot. Trump is supporting a primary challenger to Cheney in Wyoming.

In a series of statements, Trump described Cheney as a "war monger" and a "lap dog" to House Democrats. "To look at her is to despise her," he said on Oct. 20.

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Cheney is also battling House Republican leader Kevin McCarthy, R-Calif., and other GOP members who voted to remove her from her congressional leadership position because of her criticism of Trump.

Cheney, one of two Republican members of the House committee investigating the Jan. 6 riot, continues to seek national forums to critique the former Republican president. Her speech Tuesday came at a free speech awards ceremony hosted by the Nackey Loeb School of Communications in Manchester, N.H.

New Hampshire, as always, is expected to hold the first Republican primary of the 2024 presidential campaign. Cheney has not said whether she plans to run for president.

Next year, Cheney is scheduled to give a speech on the future of the Republican Party, part of a speakers series sponsored by the Ronald Reagan Presidential Foundation & Institute.

In her remarks in New Hampshire, Cheney said too many people were downplaying the violence of Jan. 6 by saying that the "institutions held." The nation may not be so lucky if there is a next time, she said.

"Our institutions do not defend themselves," Cheney said. "We the people defend them."

This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: Liz Cheney hits GOP over 'dangerous and irrational' Donald Trump

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