Liz Cheney, a key voice in the Republican House leadership, increasingly breaks with Trump

Cheney, who is the daughter of former Vice President Dick Cheney, has broken up with Trump in politics before, but has become increasingly outspoken in recent months.

Throughout the coronavirus pandemic, Cheney has taken a different tone than the President. When Trump claimed that he had full authority to lift the restrictions imposed by governors on their states to limit the spread of the virus, Cheney replied on Twitter: “The federal government has no absolute power.”

Cheney also backed off when Trump was considering ending the blockades for the good of the economy in March.

“There will be no normally functioning economy if our hospitals are overwhelmed and thousands of Americans of all ages, including our doctors and nurses, die because we have been unable to do what it takes to stop the virus,” he wrote.

She certainly isn’t a rebel in the style of the late Senator John McCain. And she has not voted against Trump on burning issues, such as his seizure of military funds for the construction of a border wall, such as the withdrawal of Republican Texas Representative Will Hurd. Instead, Cheney’s criticism of the president often comes without explicit mention. But in a Republican party that has strongly linked up with Trump and driven out dissidents since her election, even the smallest deviations from their positions, especially from Republican leaders, are notable.

As Politico’s Melanie Zanona first reported earlier this week, Cheney’s approach could point to a post-Trump strategy ahead of the November election.

Republican sources close to Cheney told CNN that they believe his recent stance toward the White House could be an attempt to forge his own distinctive lane, ranking well in case Trump loses reelection. She could expose to her Republican colleagues the case that she was one of the few people who rejected the president’s excesses, but without doing so in a way that angered him or his followers.

Cheney appears to have struck a balance that has eluded so many others in the past three years. Despite her public comments that rebuked the President, he did not lash out at her. Instead, Trump has repeatedly praised her in public.

Some members believe this is because Cheney has a unique name recognition and outsized independence based on national support. Republicans also point out that Cheney is very strategic about the issues he wants to fight on, and avoids personal attacks.

Unsurprisingly, Cheney’s criticism of the administration tends to gravitate toward foreign policy and national security concerns. She has launched a campaign this month against Trump’s plan to remove US troops from Germany, calling it “dangerously wrong.”

Earlier this year, he also criticized Trump’s idea of ​​taking Taliban leaders to Camp David for peace talks, saying “no member of the Taliban should set foot there. Never.”

And when Trump was attacking witnesses who testified during his impeachment hearing, she defended them. In some cases, she has even struggled to distance herself from the president’s rhetoric. On Capitol Hill last month, without prompting, she rebuked Trump’s unsubstantiated claims that suggest former Congressman Joe Scarborough murdered a former aide to Congress.

“I think the president should stop tweeting about Joe Scarborough,” he said. “We are in the midst of a pandemic. He is the commander in chief of this nation. And he is causing great pain to the family of the young woman who died.”

His comments contrasted with House Leader Kevin McCarthy, who sidestepped questions about it at the time and said he didn’t know enough about it.

Cheney decided not to run for the Senate earlier this year, saying he wanted to stay in the House to stop “socialist Democrats.” Some of her colleagues say they see her as a potential House speaker if Republicans get her back in the future.

“I think I can have the greatest impact for the people of Wyoming by remaining in the leadership of the House of Representatives and working to win back our Republican majority,” he said when he announced his decision.