House

Cheney: 'It is disgusting and despicable' to see Gosar 'lie' about Jan. 6

Rep. Liz Cheney (R-Wyo.) blasted fellow Republican Rep. Paul Gosar (Ariz.) for placing blame for the death of a woman during the Jan. 6 rioting by supporters of President Trump at the feet of Capitol Police. 

"On January 6, as the violent mob advanced on the House chamber, I was standing near @RepGosar and helped him open his gas mask," Cheney said in a tweet on Tuesday. "The Capitol Police led us to safety. It is disgusting and despicable to see Gosar lie about that day and smear the men and women who defended us."

Gosar, during a House hearing earlier in the day, said Capitol Police were "lying in wait" for Ashli Babbitt, who was shot and killed during the breach at the Capitol that day. Gosar reportedly described Babbitt as being "executed" by Capitol Police. 

An investigation by U.S. Attorney's Office for the District of Columbia and D.C.'s Metropolitan Police Department determined earlier this year the actions of the officer who shot Babbitt did not warrant prosecution.

Gosar and 20 other House Republicans voted against legislation late Tuesday to award Congressional Gold Medals - one of the highest civilian honors - to police officers who defended the Capitol during the violent Jan. 6 insurrection. Members of both parties supported it, 406-21, with all of the votes in opposition coming from conservative Republicans.

Since the Jan. 6 insurrection at the Capitol, several of Trump's most vocal allies on Capitol Hill have attempted to downplay the danger posed to people in the building that day and suggested the rioters who stormed the Capitol were voicing legitimate concerns about the election. 

Gosar is among several Republicans who have been hit by progressives over the Jan. 6 riot, with some Democratic lawmakers asking for a House Ethics Committee investigation into their conduct before, during and after the insurrection. 

Gosar tweeted at the Trump supporters during the riot, asking them not to "get carried away" and later saying in social media posts "Americans are upset," according to CNN.

He also tweeted that President Biden should concede, just hours before the rioting began.

"I want his concession on my desk tomorrow morning. Don't make me come over there," Gosar tweeted along with a photo of the demonstrators. 

Cheney has been sharply critical of Trump and members of her own party who have backed his unfounded claims of widespread electorion fraud. She was ousted from her spot in GOP leadership early this year after House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) said her statements about Trump and the election had become a distraction. 

"Remaining silent and ignoring the lie emboldens the liar. I will not participate in that," Cheney said in a floor speech before her removal. "I will not sit back and watch in silence while others lead our party down a path that abandons the rule of law and joins the former president's crusade to undermine our democracy."

In Gosar's home state of Arizona, officials in Maricopa County are pressing on with an audit of the 2020 election results, something Cheney called an "effort to subvert democracy."

Updated at 8:46 a.m.

Outbrain