Rep. Liz Cheney is embracing House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Democrats on the campaign trail in an effort to block former President Donald Trump and his allies from winning a Republican majority in Congress after the midterm elections.
Cheney, who is retiring after being handily defeated in Wyoming’s GOP primary this year, has endorsed at least two Democratic candidates with a week left before Election Day. The scion of a one-time powerful and influential Republican family, Cheney hit the campaign trail on Tuesday for an event with two-term Democratic Rep. Elissa Slotkin in Michigan’s 7th Congressional District.
“If we want to ensure the survival of our republic, we have to walk away from politics as usual,” said Cheney during a rally for Slotkin on Tuesday. “We have to stand up, every one of us, and say we’re going to do what’s right for this country. We’re going to look beyond partisan politics.”
Slotkin, who is running in a newly-drawn district, is one of the most vulnerable House Democrats running this cycle. Cheney said backing Slotkin “was not a hard decision at all” over Michigan State Sen. Tom Barrett, the GOP nominee.
“There is one really, really big thing we agree on and that is preserving the American democracy,” said Slotkin.
While Slotkin was Cheney’s first Democratic endorsement, she is certainly not the last. The Wyoming Republican is also backing Rep. Tim Ryan of the U.S. Senate in Ohio against Republican author J.D. Vance.
Cheney’s political action committee, the Great Task, is spending $500,000 on an ad in Arizona slamming the Republican nominees for governor and secretary of state over their purported denial of the 2020 election.
“I don’t know that I have ever voted for a Democrat. But if I lived in Arizona, I absolutely would,” Cheney says in the ad. “You have a candidate for governor, Kari Lake, and a candidate for secretary of state, Mark Finchem, both of whom have said they will only honor an election if they agree with it.
Outside of campaigning for candidates and spending money attacking Republicans, Cheney has also offered praise for Pelosi, D-Calif., and the speaker’s leadership style.
“Everyone knows she is a liberal from San Francisco [and] I am a conservative from Wyoming, there are many, many issues, maybe most issues, on which we disagree,” Cheney said at the City Club of Cleveland earlier this week. “But I think that she is a tremendous leader.”
Much of Cheney’s support for Democrats stems from her opposition to Trump. Cheney has claimed that a House Republican majority would be dangerous because many of its members and leaders committed to Trump more than the U.S. Constitution.
“The people who will be running the House of Representatives in a Republican majority will give authority and power to some of the most radical members of the conference and I don’t think that that’s good for the country,” said Cheney.
Allies say the dim view of Republicans, specifically House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy, is behind Cheney’s decision to campaign for Democrats.
“She feels strongly that there is something wrong with our politics and wants to try to fix it,” said a moderate House Republican, who opposed efforts to strip Cheney from the House leadership team last year. “But, I think she feels as though the only people who share that assessment are Democrats.”
It remains to be seen whether Cheney will endorse or campaign for more Democrats with the midterm elections set to take place next week. Fox News Digital’s requests for comment from Cheney’s political action committee were not returned.
Cheney, the daughter of former Vice President Dick Cheney, was once seen as the embodiment of the Republican establishment. That changed after Trump came onto the scene, however.
Trump, a populist Republican, spent much of his 2016 presidential campaign repudiating the neoconservative foreign policy long associated with Dick Cheney and former President George W. Bush. Once in office, Trump pursued policies on trade and immigration that only furthered the ideological rift.
Cheney supported much of Trump’s agenda throughout his term in office. In 2019, she was elected to lead the House Republican Conference. In that job, she helped craft talking points for House Republicans to defend Trump during his first impeachment trial.
After the 2020 election, Cheney broke with Trump over claims the contest was rigged. She voted to impeach him in early 2021 for allegedly inciting the Jan. 6 attack on the Capitol.
The decision to cross Trump led House Republicans to oust Cheney from her leadership post. She only angered them further by taking a seat on the special panel investigating the Jan. 6 incident after McCarthy, R-Calif., decided to boycott its proceedings.
“As a nation today, we are facing an ongoing assault by the former president and by people that are spreading his lie,” said Cheney.
Cheney’s service on the committee was, in part, one of the reasons why she lost renomination this year. Her Trump-endorsed challenger, Harriet Hageman, made Cheney’s service on the panel a focal point of the campaign.
“This was a referendum on the never-ending witch hunt,” Trump said in response to Cheney’s loss. “The people have spoken!”