by Michael J. DaSilva
Liz Cheney’s political future is now in peril. A political obituary is now being written for the former rising GOP star. This forecasted death of Cheney’s political career is the consequence of her taking a moral stand to vote to impeach President Donald J. Trump, for inciting a mob that stormed the Capitol on January 6. How quickly one’s professional prospects and fortunes can evaporate.
The U.S. Representative for Wyoming’s at-large congressional district is incurring the wrath of the GOP because she dared to oppose the cult of personality that is Donald Trump. Following the deadly insurrection at the Capitol, Cheney was the most vocal Republican lawmaker to condemn President Trump’s reckless and dangerous rhetoric and the role it played in causing a violent mob to commit domestic terrorism. And for her willingness to do so, she may have lost her seat of power. Her condemnation of Trump may have cost her a future in the GOP. I say it was worth it. With great power comes great responsibility and what good is power if you don’t use it at the right times and for the right reasons?
Is there no line that Donald Trump could cross, that he wouldn’t face any consequences for from the GOP? While running for president in 2016, Trump famously said that he could shoot somebody and he wouldn’t lose any voters. That ended up almost being true, and perhaps truer than anyone at the time could have believed, even Trump himself. And that reality is truly tragic. All politicians are flawed and imperfect creatures, as are all humans. But Donald Trump, perhaps more than any other politician in history, has been immune to suffering any political consequences for his faults. Historians will study how this came to be for years to come, but Liz Cheney should be applauded for her courageous vote to finally hold Trump accountable, for once in his political career, and possibly his life.
Don’t get me wrong, it’s absolutely the case that the media has treated Trump with nothing, but absolute contempt from the moment he descended down that escalator in Trump tower in June of 2015 and announced he was running for president. It’s also true that the media went after him viciously every moment of his presidency (as he went after them) and gave him absolutely zero credit for any of his administration’s accomplishments. From a great economy, to criminal justice reform, to defeating ISIS, to striking historic peace deals in the Middle East, Donald Trump received zero credit for anything he did. I don’t think it’s an exaggeration to say that he could have literally cured cancer or COVID-19 for that matter, and he would have been be blamed for taking too long. Trump could do nothing right in the eyes of the Washington D.C. establishment and the mainstream media.
But ultimately, he ended up being his own worst enemy. No matter how many policy achievements he had on paper, his tone and tenor and rhetoric and his inability to control his worst impulses always distracted from anything positive he was able to do. He just couldn’t help himself. His pettiness and narcissism did him in. I’m convinced that Donald Trump defeated Donald Trump. And in the end, he did more damage to himself and his legacy than any of his fiercest political foes could have ever done. But what’s worse is, it’s not about him or his legacy. People died. The heart of our nation’s democracy was attacked. Not only did he do nothing to stop it, he actually provoked it or as Liz Cheney put it, “There’s no question the president formed the mob, the president incited the mob, the president addressed the mob. He lit the flame.”
Who knows what the future holds? Now there’s talk that Trump might emerge from the American carnage he incited and form a new political party. Who knows if that’s just talk, or if anything will come of it? It’s also unclear what will happen with impeachment proceedings in the Senate. I think that what is clear is that Donald J. Trump, despite all of his accomplishments over the past four years, for which he received no credit, has disgraced himself and this country, and morally disqualified himself from ever being a leader in this country ever again. I know that won’t stop him from trying and I know many people believe he disqualified himself long ago, before he was ever elected in the first place. But one thing I am absolutely certain of, is that Liz Cheney did the right thing. Someone had to step forward and hold Donald Trump accountable, and that’s exactly what she did.