Rep. Liz Cheney (R-WY) suggested on Sunday morning that former President Donald Trump may have intentionally provoked more violence during last month’s insurrectionist riot when he attacked then-Vice President Mike Pence on Twitter as thousands of his followers stormed the U.S. Capitol.
A day after the Wyoming Republican Party censured Cheney and called for her resignation for voting to impeach Trump over his role in inciting the seditious Jan. 6 riot, the third-ranking House Republican appeared on Fox News Sunday to declare that she will not step down.
“As I’ve explained and will continue to explain to supporters all across the state and voters all across the state, the oath that I took to the Constitution compelled me to vote for impeachment and it doesn't bend to partisanship, it doesn't bend to political pressure,” Cheney told Fox News anchor Chris Wallace. “It's the most important oath that we take and so I will stand by that and I will continue to fight for all of the issues that matter so much to us all across Wyoming.”
Her state party’s censure comes on the heels of last week’s attempt by House Republicans to remove her as the House Republican Conference Chair. The Wyoming congresswoman survived as her colleagues voted 145-61 for her to remain in the post.
Cheney also took a swing at both the GOP and Trump for peddling the “Big Lie” that the election was “stolen” by President Joe Biden and falsely claiming pro-Trump rioters weren’t responsible for the deadly violence at the Capitol.
“People in the party are mistaken,” she stated. “They believe that BLM and antifa were behind what happened here at the Capitol. It's just simply not the case, not true and we are going to have a lot of work we have to do.”
“People have been lied to,” she continued. “The extent to which President Trump, for months leading up to January 6, spread the notion that the election had been stolen or that the election was rigged, was a lie. And people need to understand that. We need to make sure that we as Republicans are the party of truth.”
Cheney, the highest-ranking House Republican to vote for Trump’s impeachment, said that the “single greatest threat to our public is a president who would put his own self-interest above the Constitution,” adding that Trump did “everything he could to steal” the election and it ended with the attack on the Capitol.
Pressed by Wallace whether she would vote to convict Trump of impeachment if she were in the Senate, Cheney said she would “listen to the evidence” while bringing up Trump’s Jan. 6 tweet attacking Pence.
“People will want to know exactly what the president was doing,” she stated. “They want to know, for example, whether the tweet he sent out calling Vice President Pence a coward while the attack was underway, whether that tweet, for example, was a premeditated effort to provoke violence.”
“There are a lot of questions that have to be answered and there will be many, many criminal investigations looking at every aspect of this and everyone who was involved, as there should be, but I stand firmly by my statement,” Cheney concluded. “We have never seen that kind of an assault by a president of the United States on another branch of government and that can never happen again.”
The tweet in question, sent by Trump as the insurrection raged out of control, said: “Mike Pence didn’t have the courage to do what should have been done to protect our Country and our Constitution, giving States a chance to certify a corrected set of facts, not the fraudulent or inaccurate ones which they were asked to previously certify. USA demands the truth!”