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Former Rep. Liz Cheney (R-Wyo.) is warning that the United States is “sleepwalking into dictatorship,” saying that if former President Trump is reelected, it could mean the end of the republic.
“One of the things we see today is sort of a sleepwalking into dictatorship in the United States,” Cheney told CBS News’s John Dickerson.
Cheney, an outspoken critic of Trump, is releasing a book Tuesday titled “Oath and Honor: A Memoir and a Warning.” The book rebukes the modern Republican Party and dives into the Jan. 6, 2021, attack on the Capitol.
Cheney was the vice chair of the House select committee that investigated the insurrection.
“He’s told us what he will do. It’s very easy to see the steps that he will take,” she said of the former president in the new interview.
Trump, the front-runner for the 2024 GOP nomination, has threatened to “root out” his political enemies if he returns to the White House, telegraphing a sweeping overhaul of the federal government and criminal prosecutions for some of his opponents.
“People who say ‘well, if he’s elected, it’s not that dangerous because we have all of these checks and balances’ don’t fully understand the extent to which the Republicans in Congress today have been co-opted,” she added.
Cheney made a public exit from Congress last year after attacking her own party for supporting Trump. She lost in her August 2022 primary to now-Rep. Harriet Hageman (R-Wyo.) after being one of the most vocal Republican critics of Trump and his role in the insurrection.
She campaigned for Democratic Michigan Rep. Elissa Slotkin last year and said if the country wanted to ensure the survival of its democracy “we have to walk away from politics as usual.”
According to Cheney’s publisher, her book will explain why she decided to stand alone against her party and risk “her career, her seat and her position in leadership to do what she knew was right.”
The former lawmaker joined the staff at the University of Virginia as a professor at its Center for Politics earlier this year. She was appointed to serve in the department through the fall semester with the option to renew for more years.
In October, Cheney said she is not ruling out a White House bid. In an interview with CNN, she vowed to help elect leaders who will fight against future challenges to election results and said she thinks Trump is the “single most dangerous threat we face.”