Former President Donald Trump at war with 'rule of law': Liz Cheney

Michael CaseyAP
VideoThe U.S. congressional committee probing the deadly Jan. 6 assault on the Capitol issued subpoenas seeking documents and testimony from six more associates of former President Donald Trump, including top aides from his re-election campaign.

Former US president Donald Trump is at war “with the rule of law and the Constitution”, Republican representative Liz Cheney says, and those who sit by silently are aiding his efforts.

Cheney, a prominent Trump critic who is vice chair of a congressional committee investigating the January 6 Capitol insurrection, said the challenge now is whether citizens will do their duty and “defend the Constitution and stand for truth”.

“Will we put duty to our oath above partisan politics or will we look away from the danger and the threat, embrace the lies and enable the liar?” Cheney asked, speaking at a First Amendment event in New Hampshire.

“There is no grey area when it comes to that question, when it comes to this moment. There is no middle ground.”

Capitol Riot
Camera IconDonald Trump is suing the House of Representatives' committee investigating the US Capitol riot. Credit: AP

Cheney was one of 10 House Republicans who voted to impeach Trump on a charge of inciting the January 6 insurrection.

Hundreds of Trump’s supporters violently pushed past police, broke into the US Capitol building and interrupted the certification of Joe Biden’s presidential election victory in a futile bid to keep Trump in office.

Cheney, a daughter of former Vice President Dick Cheney, has framed Trump and the events of January 6 as an existential fight for the Republican Party and for democracy itself.

“This nation needs a Republican Party that is based on truth,” she told the crowd in Manchester, New Hampshire.

She called for a Republican Party “that puts forward our ideals and our policies based on substance, one that is willing to reject the former president’s lies. One that is willing to tell the truth that millions of Americans have been tragically misled by former president Trump, who continues to this day to use language that he knows provoked violence on January 6”.

QAnon Shaman
Camera Icon"QAnon Shaman" Jacob Chansley has pleaded guilty after breaking into the US Capitol on January 6. Credit: AP

Cheney said she has heard people downplay the events at the US Capitol and say “it wasn’t that big of a deal because our institutions held”.

“To those people I say, our institutions do not defend themselves. We, the people, defend them,” she said.

“Our institutions held on January 6 because there were brave men and women, elected officials at every level of our government, who did their duty, who stood up for what was right, who resisted pressure to do otherwise.”

Some Republican Party officials in Wyoming announced in August they will no longer recognise Cheney as a party member because of her vote to impeach Trump.

Several have also announced plans to challenge Cheney next year.

Trump has endorsed Wyoming attorney Harriet Hageman for the seat.

On Tuesday, the January 6 House committee issued subpoenas to 10 more former officials who worked for Trump at the end of his presidency, including press secretary Kayleigh McEnany and senior adviser Stephen Miller.

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