National Security

Dick Cheney visits Capitol for Jan. 6, criticizes GOP leadership

Former Vice President Dick Cheney accompanied his daughter Rep. Liz Cheney (R-Wyo.) to the Capitol for events marking the anniversary of the Jan. 6 attack on the Capitol, and expressed disappointment with GOP leadership.

“It’s not a leadership that resembles any of the folks I knew when I was here for 10 years,” Dick Cheney told reporters after exiting the House floor following a moment of silence in recognition of Jan. 6.

Cheney, who served for a decade as a House lawmaker from Wyoming, echoed many of the comments previously made by his daughter regarding the Republican Party.

“I’m deeply disappointed we don’t have better leadership in the Republican party to restore the Constitution,” he told ABC News earlier Thursday.

The elder Cheney came to the Capitol alongside his daughter, saying she’s “doing a hell of a job. I’m here to support her,” as well as to mark the day.

Liz Cheney is the vice chair of the select House committee investigating the Jan. 6 attack. She voted to impeach former President Trump for inciting the Jan. 6 riot, and was booted from House leadership for her criticisms of Trump. She is now facing a Trump-backed primary challenger.

Asked how he felt about how she was being treated by the broader GOP, Cheney said, “My daughter can take care of herself.”

“It’s an important historical event,” Cheney told ABC of the anniversary. “You can’t overestimate how important it is.”

The former vice president was loudly criticized by Democrats for being an architect of the Iraq War nearly two decades ago, but the party’s leaders on Thursday said they were honored by his presence, with House Majority Leader Steny Honey (D-Md.) noting lawmakers were lining up to speak with him.

“I think what it reflects is the great respect that we have for Liz Cheney. I mean, he’s her father. Yes, he’s the vice president, but I think you saw the line because, first of all, we appreciate the fact that he’s here, supporting his daughter in what is otherwise a very significant minority position in the Republican Party, which is very sad,” Hoyer said.

“We were very honored by his being here,” House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) said.

“He has a right to be on the floor, as a former member of the House. And I was happy to welcome him back, and to congratulate him on the courage of Liz Cheney. … I think the message is very clear … We were just honored that he was here.”

Mike Lillis contributed.

This story was updated at 1:40 p.m.

Tags ABC News Capitol riot Dick Cheney Donald Trump Jan. 6 anniversary Jan. 6 panel Liz Cheney Nancy Pelosi

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