Acts of political and personal courage should be acknowledged, especially these days. Liz Cheney is standing firm against “The Big Lie,” that her party actually won the past presidential election, that it was “stolen.” 70% of Republicans believe it was illegitimate, according to CBS Nightly News. Cheney is the daughter of Republican former Vice President Dick Cheney and a conservative congresswoman from Wyoming. Despite these bone fides she is under attack from Mr. Trump and the Republican leadership for her efforts to uphold our country’s democratic integrity.
“The Republican Party is at a turning point, and Republicans must decide whether we are going to choose truth and fidelity to the Constitution,” she wrote May 5th in an op-ed for the Washington Post. She declares that Republicans must stand with “the rule of law” and reject “the dangerous and anti-democratic Trump cult of personality.”
Here in Ohio, we face a similar challenge. Will Jane Timken attempt to defend the indefensible? In her guest column in The Dispatch of 4/13, “President, Allies on Reckless Tax-and-Spend Policy Program,” Timken—former chairwoman of the Ohio Republican Party– emphasizes her allegiance to former President Trump.
She will “advance an America First agenda.” She will oppose “the far-left agenda” of the “radical” Green New Deal. She credits Mr. Trump with the development of the vaccines that have “turned a corner” on the COVID pandemic. Yes, these same vaccines that many Republicans now refuse to get.
This last contention, especially, raises the question, will she play fast and loose with the facts as does Trump? We all know that the Trump administration deserves no credit for containing or defeating this virus. Mr. Trump opposed mask-wearing and declined to social distance. Several of his events became mass spreaders. His administration provided little guidance, support or coordination to our states during this clearly national crisis.
Ms. Timken seeks the Republican nomination for Ohio’s soon-to-be-vacated senatorial seat. At the start of every Q & A session of her campaign she should be asked, “Do you believe the 2020 Presidential Election was stolen by the Democrats?” Unless she clearly and unequivocally rejects this lie, it should be held as the central issue of her candidacy.
There is little question that there is no real or ample proof of a fraudulent election. Beyond Cheney, other stalwart Republicans are disavowing the lie.
Republican Senator Lindsey Graham’s courageous speech after the traitorous events of January 6th stands out as a highlight in contemporary American politics. “Enough is enough,” he said, “It is over…Joe Biden is the legitimate President of The United States.” Graham continued by saying that he has been told there are thousands of fraudulent votes in Georgia and Arizona, to which he replied, “give me ten”—show me proof of ten—but the result was zero, “haven’t got one.” No proof has been presented to him, he declared.
Recently, an old hand in Ohio and American Republican politics—John Boehner, commented (NPR, 4/12) that he believes former President Trump has “abused the loyalty and trust of his supporters.” On the supposed illegitimate votes, “There’s really been nothing of any significance that would have changed one state’s election outcome, not one…nothing even close,” he said. Boehner is a former Ohio congressman and Speaker of The House of Representatives.
This lie needs to be rejected. The self-serving, delusional, and paranoid thinking that is at its basis, needs to be rejected. American politics is not often pretty, but our electoral integrity stands true. It is our American “miracle” writes Cheney, quoting the Republican Party idol, former President Ronald Reagan.
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