Trump: Cheney's Defeat a 'Referendum' on 'Witch Hunt' Former President Donald Trump (Dennis Van Tine/AP)
By Sandy Fitzgerald | Wednesday, 17 August 2022 08:15 AM EDT
Former President Donald Trump has declared his nemesis Rep. Liz Cheney's primary loss in Wyoming as a "referendum on the never-ending Witch Hunt" and questioned whether it means the House select committee investigating Jan. 6 will be dissolved.
"I assume that with the very big Liz Cheney loss, far bigger than had ever been anticipated, the January 6th Committee of political Hacks and Thugs will quickly begin the beautiful process of DISSOLUTION?" Trump posted on his Truth Social page late Tuesday night. "This was a referendum on the never ending Witch Hunt. The people have spoken!"
Cheney, the vice-chair of the Jan. 6 committee, lost by a large margin in Wyoming's primary Tuesday to Trump-endorsed Harriet Hageman. The three-term congresswoman drew the ire of the former president after she voted to impeach him over the Capitol incidents and has continued to anger him with her role as one of the committee's leaders and as one of just two Republicans chosen to participate.
The other Republican, Rep. Adam Kinzinger of Illinois, who like Cheney, is a strong Trump critic, announced his retirement after state Democrats proposed gerrymandered congressional seats, cutting the number of GOP House seats from five to three and eliminating his seat.
Cheney, however, on Tuesday night, said she could have kept her congressional seat had she not fought back against Trump, and said she'll keep fighting despite her loss to Hageman, which has been expected for months, reports The Washington Post.
"I could easily have done the same again, the path was clear, but it would have required that I go along with President Trump's lie about the 2020 election," she said to a group of around 100 supporters gathered in a location in the Teton mountain range in Wyoming. "It would have required that I enable his ongoing efforts to unravel our democratic system and attack the foundations of our republic. That was a path I could not and would not take."
She further told the audience, which included her parents, former Vice President Dick Cheney and his wife, Lynne, that "we must be very clear-eyed about the threat we face and about what is required to defeat it. I have said since January 6 that I will do whatever it takes to ensure Donald Trump is never again anywhere near the Oval Office. And I mean this."