Former Vice President Dick Cheney emerged from relative political seclusion Thursday to castigate former President Donald Trump as a “coward” and a “threat” to the country in a new campaign video for his daughter, Rep. Liz Cheney (R-Wyo.), who faces tough odds to beat a Trump-backed challenger in her Republican primary later this month.
Dick Cheney, who served as vice president for two terms under President George W. Bush and boasts a resume of Republican political roles dating back to the Nixon Administration, said Trump attempted to use “lies and violence to keep himself in power” after losing the 2020 presidential election.
The former vice president praised his daughter for breaking with the GOP to oppose Trump, stating, “there is nothing more important she will ever do than lead the effort to make sure Donald Trump is never again near the Oval Office.”
Liz Cheney faces Trump-endorsed Harriet Hageman in the August 16 primary for Wyoming’s sole House seat—limited polling of the race suggests Hageman holds a commanding lead.
“In our nation’s 246-year history, there has never been an individual who was a greater threat to our republic than Donald Trump,” Dick Cheney said at the beginning of the one-minute clip.
Dick Cheney has reportedly sounded off against Trump in the past year. The recent book “This Will Not Pass: Trump, Biden, and the Battle for America’s Future” by New York Times reporters Jonathan Martin and Alexander Burns states the former vice president referred to Trump as a “maniac.” The former vice president also slammed Republicans over the January 6 attack on the Capitol, telling ABC on the riot’s first anniversary, “I’m deeply disappointed we don’t have better leadership in the Republican party to restore the Constitution.”
Unseating Cheney is one of the top priorities for Trump in the 2022 midterms, and his attacks appear to be connecting with voters. A Casper Star-Tribune poll released last month found Cheney with just a 27% approval rating among Wyoming Republicans, and more than half of those surveyed said they are less likely to support her because of her service on the House January 6 committee. Cheney has already paid an immense political price for her vote to impeach Trump and choosing to be on the committee. In May of 2021, Cheney was forced out of her role as chairwoman of the House Republican Conference—the third-highest-ranking GOP position in the House—and the Republican National Committee censured her in February.
Only six of the 10 House Republicans who voted to impeach Trump decided to run for reelection, and they haven’t fared well. Reps. Peter Meijer (Mich.) and Tom Rice (S.C.) lost their GOP primaries, while Rep. Dan Newhouse (Wash.) and Jaime Herrera Beutler (Wash.) are struggling in open primary races that have not yet been called. Rep. David Valadao (Calif.) is the only one to survive a primary so far, but he’s expected to lose handily to his Democratic opponent in the November general election.