This all brings me to Thursday when Cheney offered a scathing critique of his own party and their collective reactions to the riot on the U.S. Capitol on January 6, 2021.
It should be noted here – as many Republicans will do – that Cheney’s daughter, Wyoming Rep. Liz Cheney, is the main (and one of the only) voice in the Republican Party urging the GOP to condemn both what happened on January 6 and the role then played by then President Donald Trump in fomenting the insurgency.
Which, well, okay. Cheney, like any parent, is probably somewhat protective of his daughter. But, at the same time, he didn’t have to come to Congress to commemorate the anniversary of the January 6 attack. He also didn’t have to speak to reporters – and tell them how he thinks the GOP has gone astray.
That he has done so speaks to his concern about the current leadership of the Republican Party – and his belief that a course correction is absolutely necessary.
He’s right, of course. And, I guess a lot of elected Republicans – the leadership and the grassroots – know this but are just too afraid of incurring Trump’s wrath to speak out.
Consider what the top two Republicans in Congress said in the aftermath of the riot.
Staying silent or even standing up for something you know to be wrong is, literally, the opposite of what leadership looks like. Real leaders stand up for what they believe is right, even if their constituents may not always agree. Because leadership is not going to get along. It is putting yourself in danger when it is really important to stand up and do what needs to be done for the good of the country.
Cheney’s criticism of the leaders of his own party goes directly to this question of leadership. And every Republican in Congress should stop what they’re doing and listen to it.