Several staffers called out former Republican Liz Cheney for using the January 6th Committee for political gains. While she may have lost her seat in her home state, it’s no secret that she has been gearing up for a presidential run in 2024 with Democrats vowing to support her.
“We all came from prestigious jobs, dropping what we were doing because we were told this would be an important fact-finding investigation that would inform the public,” one former committee staffer told the Washington Post. “But when [the committee] became a Cheney 2024 campaign, many of us became discouraged.”
Fifteen former and current staffers spoke to the outlet anonymously, voicing concerns that the committee’s final report will almost exclusively focus on former President Donald Trump while minimizing the committee’s other findings unrelated to the former commander-in-chief.
The Jan. 6 committee’s “Gold Team” focused on the former chief executive and its work will reportedly form the bulk on the final report. That prominence will potentially come at the expense of the “Blue Team,” which looked into other areas, the outlet noted. The staffers, however, aren’t merely concerned that their work will be omitted from the report, but that a Trump-centric document would ignore other actors and organizations, potentially leaving the door open for a repeat incident.
“Trump lit the fuse on all of this but he is kind of irrelevant now — it doesn’t matter if he runs for president … Of course we want to stop Trump in any way possible but we’ll still be facing these organized militia types or lone-wolf attackers in five to ten years,” a current committee staffer said. “I don’t think it’s good for the committee or democracy at large if this entire final report is the case against Trump.”
The outgoing Wyoming Republican lost her primary to a Trump-endorsed challenger and will leave elected office at the end of the term. She has vowed to dedicate herself to ensuring Trump never returns to public office and has emerged as a potential 2024 presidential candidate.
Cheney spokesman Jeremy Adler addressed the criticisms, telling the Post that “Donald Trump is the first president in American history to attempt to overturn an election and prevent the peaceful transfer of power. So, damn right Liz is ‘prioritizing’ understanding what he did and how he did it and ensuring it never happens again.”
“Some staff have submitted subpar material for the report that reflects long-held liberal biases about federal law enforcement, Republicans, and sociological issues outside the scope of the Select Committee’s work,” Adler continued. “She won’t sign onto any ‘narrative’ that suggests Republicans are inherently racist or smears men and women in law enforcement, or suggests every American who believes God has blessed America is a white supremacist.”
Committee spokesman Tim Mulvey, meanwhile, derided the anonymous staffers and said the “historic, bipartisan fact-finding effort speaks for itself, and that won’t be changed by a handful of disgruntled staff who are uninformed about many parts of the committee’s ongoing work.”
But did it though? Are Americans suddenly more enlightened by the committee’s efforts or did it really not change anything but the committee members’ political standing? I know it cost Americans millions when trials on the individuals who broke into the Capitol were already underway and unrelated to the committee.
Erica Carlin is an independent journalist, opinion writer and contributor to several news and opinion sources. She is based in Georgia.