Now that I am in the mood to hand out kudos to public officials who are leaving the stage, I want to say a word or two in praise of a congresswoman I never imagined praising for her work on my behalf.
Stand tall, Liz Cheney.
Cheney is a Republican from Wyoming who this summer got drummed out of office in the GOP primary by a candidate who was promoted by the former POTUS. Why? Because Cheney chose to stand for the Constitution, chose to honor her oath to protect and defend the Constitution and because both of those matters went counter to the wishes of the POTUS who refused to do either.
She became a target of the MAGA cultists who profess fealty to Donald Trump.
Cheney hasn’t wavered in her commitment to the Constitution. She continues to serve on the House select committee formed to examine the 1/6 insurrection/attack on the Capitol. She blames Trump for inciting the attack. She has vowed to do all she can to prevent Trump from ever entering the Oval Office again. She is one of two Republicans — the other being Adam Kinzinger of Illinois — to serve on this committee; I will have more to say about Kinzinger later.
Liz Cheney makes no apologies for her staunch conservative views. She voted with Trump more than 90% of the time during Trump’s term in office. I truly understand her philosophy. She remains adamantly pro-gun, pro-life, anti-tax, and pro-small government. She is a conservative’s conservative.
Cheney also is equally adamant that she must follow her oath. She has done so gloriously in rising up against the ex-president who incited the assault on our government in an effort to overturn the 2020 presidential election.
I salute this public official. I wish her all the very best.
Mike Pence has some things he needs to explain to Americans. The former vice president of the United States tried like the dickens to squash the insurrection that damn near succeeded in overturning the 2020 election.
Except that the orders he issued to the military brass violated the U.S. Constitution. But … did they?
Pence reportedly issued the order for the active-duty military to put down the assault on Capitol Hill; he issued one for the National Guard, too. He did so in the presence of Joint Chiefs of Staff Chairman Gen. Mark Milley. But only the president has the authority to issue that order. Then again, the president was doing nothing to end the violence. It well could have fallen, then, to the VPOTUS to take command in that extraordinary circumstance.
Pence was being threatened explicitly by those who were carrying signs and yelling “Hang Mike Pence!” Donald Trump did nothing to quell that hideous act. It well could have fallen to the VP to do what the head man refused to do.
Pence well might be called to testify before the House 1/6 select committee. I do hope the panel members are able to pull some answers from Mike Pence on what happened on that horrifying day.
Cassidy Hutchinson has emerged as the “John Dean” of the 1/6 insurrection scandal, given what she told the House select committee today in televised testimony.
Let me start by declaring that young Hutchinson — to put it bluntly — blew the doors off the building where she offered testimony in a surprise hearing called at the last minute by Committee Chairman Bennie Thompson, D-Miss.
Hutchinson served on White House chief of staff Mark Meadows staff. She was, to borrow a phrase, “in the room” when all hell was breaking loose on 1/6.
She told the committee that Meadows asked for a presidential pardon; so did Trump’s lawyer Rudolph Giuliani. Don Trump Jr. begged his father to call off the treasonous attackers on 1/6, along with Ivanka Trump. Hutchinson said the POTUS heard all those concerns and worries … and didn’t do anything to end the violence. Hutchinson told the panel that Vice President Mike Pence knew of the “Hang Mike Pence!” chants, as did Trump; still, the president didn’t halt the assault.
She told committee members that Trump wanted to go to the Capitol to incite the attackers even more, but when the Secret Service told him “no!” he became so enraged that he attacked an agent assigned to his security detail.
Those of us who are old enough to remember Watergate today received a first-hand account from a ringside seat inside the West Wing of the pre-meditated chaos that erupted after Trump incited the insurrection.
John Dean gave us a similar look during the Watergate scandal when he came forward to tell the Senate Watergate Committee about the “cancer” that was growing in the presidency of Richard Nixon.
Mick Mulvaney, who served as chief of staff in the White House prior to Mark Meadows, said via Twitter after Hutchinson’s testimony that “I know Cassidy … and I don’t believe she is lying.”