Cheney noted the congressional Jan. 6 select committee on which she served
referred to the Justice Department evidence that Trump provided “aid and comfort” to the mob that stormed the Capitol three years ago. That is language in the section of the 14th Amendment that liberal advocacy groups and some voters are leaning on to challenge Trump’s eligibility for the GOP primary ballot in dozens of states.
Republicans, including Trump’s rivals for the GOP nomination, have widely criticized efforts to bar the former president from the ballot as undemocratic. Some have argued that it’s wrong to disqualify Trump without him being convicted of a crime.
But Cheney, one of the GOP’s most outspoken critics of Trump, said a conviction isn’t required under the Constitution.
“I certainly believe he should have been convicted by the Senate. But I don’t believe that that’s necessary,” Cheney said. “His actions do fit the plain meaning of the Constitution, the plain language.”
On the eve of the third anniversary of the Capitol riot, Cheney said that Trump’s actions that day “threaten the very foundations of our democracy.”
She urged New Hampshire voters to reject him in the state’s first-in-the-nation presidential primary later this month, even as the former president leads polls of likely GOP primary voters by double digits
“In a little over two weeks, when you in New Hampshire go to the polls, the world will be watching. And so, New Hampshire, I ask you this: speak for us all,” Cheney said. “Show the world that we will defeat the plague of cowardice sweeping through the Republican Party.”
Cheney continues to flirt with the possibility of her own third-party presidential bid, vowing to do “whatever it takes” to keep Trump from returning to the White House.
“I’m going to do whatever is the most effective thing to ensure that Donald Trump is not elected,” Cheney said to applause on Friday. “I’ll make a decision about what that is in the coming months.”