Why I (a Democrat) Donated to Liz Cheney’s Re-Election Campaign
If you would have asked me a few years ago if I would ever donate to Liz Cheney’s re-election campaign, the answer would have been “I would rather eat dirt” then endorse a politician who does not support gay rights, gun control, and most important of all: a woman’s right to choose what to do with her body. But, if there’s anything I’ve learned the past few years, it’s “never say never.”
On the political spectrum, I would be classified as a fiscally conservative socially liberal independent. With two major political parties (the Democrats and the Republicans) controlling this country, most candidates take the party stand on issues so it’s difficult to completely support a candidate if you’re a moderate centralist. You have to decide which issues are the most important to you and not be a single issue voter because life is way too complicated to narrow support to one issue.
For decades I resisted joining a political party, preferring instead to be a registered independent (although I switched to the Democratic Party in 2019 because it was more important to nominate a Democrat who could beat Trump). I married into a family of staunch Democrats but we actually agreed on a lot more than we disagreed which brings me back to why Liz Cheney is good for this country.
Liz Cheney has integrity; she believes in the Constitution and the importance of maintaining democratic ideals across both parties; she has courage – she’s not afraid to stand up for these issues even if the Republican Party censures her; and she’s not afraid of Donald Trump, a pathetic, narcissistic, power hungry sexist liar and bully who is trying to ruin this country and is being allowed to by members of the Republican Party including (but not limited to) Mitch McConnell, Lindsey Graham, Orrin Hatch, Jim Jordan, Josh Hawley, Mark Meadows, Kevin McCarthy, Rand Paul, and Elise Stefanik.
Cheney also believes in the Republican Party and knows the importance of having a 2-party system to keep power in check. Without the two party system, we are no better than any totalitarian regime. The Republicans have lost their hold on the Republican Party to a man who saw an opportunity and exploited it. Trump has switched affiliations 6 times in the past few decades – Republican, Independent, Democrat, Republican, Independent, Republican – so his allegiance to any party is suspect. Perhaps his only allegiance is to himself. In Trump’s simplistic worldview, you are either for him or against him; he can’t fathom anything in between so when someone challenges him, he disavows and attacks like some school yard bully who takes disagreement or criticism as a personal affront.
We need Republicans like Liz Cheney (says this Democrat). She’s the vice-Chairwoman of the Select Committee investigating the January 6th assault on the Capital (one of two Republicans) that the Republican Party does not support because they are afraid what the truth will say about some of their own. The Republicans think they can offer alternative explanations for what happened that day (i.e. “legitimate political discourse”) and that people will believe their version (even when presented with overwhelming evidence to the contrary including the video footage and the testimony of the police officers responsible for protecting the Capital that day).
Most of us know what happened on January 6th but the full truth needs to come out. People – public servants – were injured and died that day. People who planned the event, endorsed the criminal behavior, and were complicit need to be held accountable – because it’s never ok to storm the Capital, break windows, destroy property, and threaten, assault, or kill people in an attempt to overthrow a democratic election. That’s why Liz Cheney is on that committee. She spoke out.
Cheney could have taken the easy way out by keeping her mouth shut and not criticizing Trump and his complicity but she didn’t. She stood up to those in power because the truth, an oath taken to the Constitution, and her unshakable faith in democracy and fair elections are more important. As the lone Congressional representative from Wyoming, Cheney has an uphill battle ahead of her to keep her seat in Congress because Trump and many Republicans are doing everything they can to ensure she isn’t re-elected.
Although Liz Cheney recently admitted she was wrong to oppose same sex marriage, she does not support a woman’s right to choose, hasn’t supported the Affordable Care Act, doesn’t think waterboarding is torture, and does not support gun control. All very important issues to me. However, Cheney does have a reverence for the rule of law and fair elections – essential components of our democracy that Trump and his supporters clearly lack. So, when I weigh all the issues knowing this country needs a Republican Party, I would rather have Republicans like Liz Cheney (and Adam Kinzinger) than those who allowed the party to be hijacked by the former President. For me, its more important to have someone with integrity across the aisle than some ass-kissing Republican who cares more about self preservation than democracy.