Liz Cheney leads the House GOP caucus. The Dems want to highlight her split as a principled break from Trumpism. But the issue here is withdrawal from Afghanistan. Trump supports leaving, Cheney instructs the caucus to oppose it, like in this memo: https://t.co/LBc8HeJYjS— Lee Fang (@lhfang) May 6, 2021
This is not 1971, but 2021; this is not Vietnam, but Afghanistan. No one cares about Afghanistan. Although Liz Cheney does a little, if she were obsessed with it, she wouldn't have chosen now to have split with her party, soon after a President of the other party announced a withdrawal from Afghanistan. In her Washington Post op-ed, she mentioned China and Black Lives Matter and not Afghanistan. I've now mentioned that country more than anyone has in the past five years.
In the video immediately below, long-time GOP strategist and Never Trumper Susan DelPercio states (at 2:13)
This isn't anymore about Trump. It's about the idea of the extremists taking over the state parties and nominating the most extreme and losing congressional seats as a result of it most likely. But again, even if 2022 works out for the Republicans, the long term it won't.
In this portion of Mika Brzezinski's chat with two GOP strategists, DelPercio didn't explain what she means by "extremism." However, it usually refers to ideology, and very few politicians can out-conservative, out-extreme Liz Cheney, as Chris Cillizza explains in the early portion of the video below. Cillizza notes that Cheney has voted with Trump more than has Elise Stefanik, who probably will replace the Wyoming congresswoman in the House GOP leadership. He adds (beginning at 4:45)
So, yea, this isn't about conservatism or even really opposing Trump's agenda while in office. This is about Liz Cheney drawing a line in the sand over the events of January 6, as well as the runup to that day and its aftermath, all about Trump arguing against all available evidence that the election was stolen.
And yes, of course, Stefanik voted to object to the Electoral College Count in Pennsylavania on the same day that the Capitol was overrun by Trump-inspired rioters. The only difference, other than that Cheney has a far more conservative voting record than Stefanik, between these two women is that the former (i.e., Cheney) isn't willing to proumulgate TRump's big lie about the 2020 election and the other is just fine with it.
That is conventional wisdom, and also valid. The GOP has thrown its lot in with Donald Trump, as Cillizza and DelPercio understand, but only the former emphasizes.When there was a challenge among Democrats to re-electing Nancy Pelosi as Speaker, Democrats quickly closed ranks to oppose the upstart. Republicans are more authoritarian and for them, there is one way and there is the highway. Jesus, many of them profess to believe, is the way, the truth, and the life. But Donald Trump is the Chosen One.