Rep. Liz Cheney (R-Wyo.) defended efforts by Republican-controlled legislatures in several states to pass election security laws, denying that these laws were linked to former President Donald Trump’s claims that the 2020 presidential election was illegitimate in an interview that aired over the weekend.
“You have to look at the specifics of each one of those efforts,” Cheney told Axios national political correspondent Jonathan Swan on “Axios on HBO.” “I think if you look at the Georgia laws, for example, there’s been a lot that’s been said nationally about the Georgia voter laws that turns out not to be true.”
Cheney was ousted from House Republican leadership for opposing Trump’s claims about election fraud and for calling for the party to reject Trumpism. Before she was voted out of leadership, she condemned the former president in a forceful speech on the House floor, accusing him of provoking the Jan. 6 riot at the U.S. Capitol and undermining the democratic process by continuing to insist the election was stolen.
Nevertheless, Cheney voiced support for voter integrity measures supported by Republicans that Democrats and mainstream media have maligned as voting “restrictions” or voter “suppression” passed in response to or because of Trump’s claims about election fraud.
In the campaign against these laws, several myths were spread about the Georgia law in particular, which critics said would make it harder for minority Americans to vote by requiring ID for mail-in or absentee ballots.
“I will never understand the resistance, for example, to voter ID,” Cheney said. “There’s a big difference between that and a president of the United States who loses an election after he tried to steal the election and refuses to concede.”
Though she defended the various Republican election bills, Cheney did not walk back her criticism of Trump, calling his refusal to acknowledge Biden’s legitimate victory “really dangerous.”
“I think about 2000,” she said. “I think about sitting on the inaugural platform in January of 2001 watching Al Gore. … I’m sure he didn’t think he had lost. We had fought this politically very, very intense battle. And he conceded. He did the right thing for this nation.
“And that is one of the big differences between that and what we’re dealing with now and the danger of Donald Trump today,” she said.
Though Cheney’s principled stance against Trump won her short-term applause in the liberal media, her position on the GOP voting bills is leading progressive columnists to denounce her as an opponent of voting rights and a supporter of the Republican Party’s purported “war on voting.”