(USA Features) Wyoming Republican Rep. Liz Cheney pushed back Monday on any notion that former President Donald Trump still controls her party, claiming instead that the ranking GOP members of the House and Senate actually do.
“I think right now, the Republican Party is headed by Mitch McConnell and Kevin McCarthy in the House. I think our elected leaders are the ones who are in charge of the Republican Party,” Cheney said during the House Republicans’ policy retreat in Florida last week.
“I think as we look at ’22 and ’24, we’re very much going to be focused on substance and on the issues,” Cheney added. “And I think that’s where you’ve got to attract back the voters that we lost in 2020, by conveying to them that, in fact, we are the party that they can trust. We’re the party of competence and of conservative principles.”
But according to recent polling, Trump retains significant sway over the party, according to a recent Harvard Kennedy School’s Institute of Politics poll, The Epoch Times reported.
And unlike Cheney, the House’s No. 3 Republican, most in her party still believe the former president has the most influence.
In a recent interview with Axios, for instance, Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-S.C., said that Trump’s sway over the GOP could make it “bigger, he can make it stronger, he can make it more diverse.” However, Graham added, “And he could also destroy it.”
Unlike Cheney, many Republican lawmakers still see Trump as having a lot of influence in the party. Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) recently said in an Axios interview that Trump’s influence on the Republican Party could make it “bigger, he can make it stronger, he can make it more diverse. And he also could destroy it.”
Cheney, one of 10 Republicans who voted to impeach Trump following the Jan. 6 Capitol riot, also said she wants to see House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., launch a 9/11-style commission to look into the origins of the incident.
“I do think it’s really important that we have a commission. … In my view, that is, the members of the commission should be retired, they shouldn’t be currently serving officials that face political pressure of any time,” she said.
“It should be absolutely bipartisan in nature, and it should begin immediately, should have subpoena power, because the American people need to know how we got to Jan. 6. What happened on Jan. 6, and people need to be held accountable,” Cheney added.
The embattled Wyoming Republican also disagreed with other GOP members that any commission should also focus on the etiology of rioting that occurring throughout last year.
“I think that what happened on Jan. 6 is unprecedented in our history. And I think that it’s very important that the commission be able to focus on that. I’m very concerned, as all my colleagues are, about the violence that we saw, the BLM, the Antifa violence last summer. I think that’s a different set of issues, a different set of problems, and a different set of solutions,” she said.