Former VP Dick Cheney called Trump "a maniac," per a new book by Jonathan Martin and Alexander Burns.
The elder Cheney backed his daughter Liz in her vote for Trump's second impeachment, the book said.
Rep. Liz Cheney has been one of the strongest GOP voices against Trump's debunked election claims.
In the aftermath of the 2020 presidential election, Rep. Liz Cheney emerged as one of the sharpest Republican critics of former President Donald Trump, who has continued to propagate debunked allegations of voter fraud in explaining his loss to now-President Joe Biden.
Despite the Wyoming lawmaker holding the No. 3 position in the GOP caucus at the time of Trump's second impeachment for "incitement of insurrection" for his role in the January 6, 2021, Capitol riot, she pushed back against his claims that the election was "stolen" and blasted his repeated efforts to overturn the election results.
Standing in the background was Cheney's influential father — former Vice President Dick Cheney — who voiced his support for his outspoken daughter and also blasted Trump, according to a newly-released book by New York Times reporters Jonathan Martin and Alexander Burns.
In the book, "This Will Not Pass: Trump, Biden, and the Battle for America's Future," Martin and Burns wrote that the elder Cheney — who served as the at-large congressman from Wyoming from 1979 to 1989 before becoming the US Defense secretary under President George H.W. Bush and then vice president under President George W. Bush — commended his daughter's decision to chastise Trump.
"Among the elder statesmen proudest of Liz Cheney was her father, the former Vice President, who made it clear to friends that he looked on his daughter's vote with admiration and assent. Trump, Dick Cheney said, was 'a maniac,'" Martin and Burns wrote.
While both Cheneys are well known for their political conservatism, the congresswoman's divergence from Trump has largely been rooted in his false election claims and her view that the former president strayed from adhering to the Constitution.
Shortly before Cheney — who backed Trump's second impeachment — was removed as the chair of the House Republican Caucus in May 2021, she took to the House floor to deliver a speech in defense of the Constitution.
"Today we face a threat America has never seen before: a former president, who provoked a violent attack on this Capitol, in an effort to steal the election, has resumed his aggressive effort to convince Americans that the election was stolen from him. He risks inciting further violence," Cheney said at the time.
She later emphasized: "I am a conservative Republican, and the most conservative of conservative principles is reverence for the rule of law," adding that individuals who refused to accept the legitimacy of Biden's win "are at war with the Constitution."
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