Liz Cheney and Kevin McCarthy were once close allies and two of the most powerful Republicans in Congress.
A lot has changed.
The latest chapter in their year-long acrimony came on Wednesday, when McCarthy said he would not cooperate with an interview and evidence request from the House committee investigating the Capitol riot.
Cheney told CNN that McCarthy’s stonewalling amounted to a “coverup” and she refused to rule out the possibility of issuing a subpoena to the minority leader.
In her remarks, the ostracized GOP congresswoman also provided our quote of the day.
Rep. Bennie G. Thompson, the chairman of the committee, sent a letter to McCarthy on Wednesday. Thompson explained that the committee is interested in learning about McCarthy’s communication with former President Donald Trump before, during, and after the ransacking of the Capitol.
“We also must learn about how the President’s plans for January 6th came together, and all the other ways he attempted to alter the results of the election,” Thompson wrote. “For example, in advance of January 6th, you reportedly explained to Mark Meadows and the former President that objections to the certification of the electoral votes on January 6th ‘was doomed to fail.’”
McCarthy has been a vocal opponent of the January 6th committee since it was formed. On Wednesday, he said the committee “is not conducting a legitimate investigation” and “is not serving any legislative purpose.”
“It is with neither regret nor satisfaction that I have concluded to not participate with this select committee’s abuse of power that stains this institution today and will harm it going forward,” McCarthy said in a statement.
The minority leader has frequently criticized House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s rejection of some of his picks to serve on the panel – evidence, he claims, that the investigation is partisan.
But Cheney’s presence on the panel undermines that argument. As recently as last year, she held a leadership position within the GOP.
She claims her opposition to Trump in general and her focus on the January 6th investigation in particular is consistent with the true values once espoused by Republicans.
“We Republicans need to stand for genuinely conservative principles, and steer away from the dangerous and anti-democratic Trump cult of personality,” she wrote in a May 2021 op-ed.