By Leo Wolfson, State Politics Reporter
U.S. Rep. Liz Cheney offered some strong thoughts about Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene, R-Georgia, on Thursday night.
“This is exactly what Putin wants,” Cheney said in a Twitter post. “If we’d had Republicans like this in the 1980s, we would have lost the Cold War.”
Cheney was specifically reacting to a speech Taylor Greene gave in Iowa that day where she said if Republicans retake control of Congress in Tuesday’s midterm elections, “not another penny will go to Ukraine.”
“The only border they care about is Ukraine, not America’s southern border,” Greene said of Democrats at a rally hosted by former President Donald Trump in Sioux City, Iowa. “Under Republicans, not another penny will go to Ukraine. Our country comes first. They don’t care about our border or our people.”
Taylor Greene is one of the most conservative members of the U.S. Congress, but she’s not the only Republican within that body to take a more isolationist stance on the war in Ukraine.
House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy, R-California, said last month that Republicans would rein in Ukraine spending if they retake the House, but did not say the U.S. would shut off aid to the country entirely in its war against Russia.
“Ukraine is important, but at the same time it can’t be the only thing, and it can’t be a blank check,” McCarthy told Punchbowl News in October.
Cheney has offered support for Ukraine since the war started late last winter and spoken out against those who do not want to support the Eastern European country. She blasted McCarthy for his stance on this issue during an Oct. 23 television interview on Meet The Press.
“The idea that the party is now no longer going to support the Ukrainian people – for somebody who has the picture of Ronald Reagan on his wall in his office in the Capitol, the notion that now Kevin McCarthy is going to make himself the leader of the pro-Putin wing of my party is just a stunning thing,” she said.
Cheney is a foreign policy hawk much like her father, former Vice President Dick Cheney. Dick Cheney advocated for the Iraq War while serving in the administration of George W. Bush, and oversaw Operation Desert Storm while Secretary of Defense under George H. Bush.
For these roles and their hawkish positions, he and his daughter have been referred to as “warmongers” by their detractors. Most recently, Republican U.S. congressional candidate Tom Barrett called Liz Cheney an establishment war hawk who supports endless wars, in response to her endorsement of his opponent in Michigan.
Turkey’s 2019 invasion of Syria was one of the issues she differed on from former Trump prior to the 2020 election. In that instance, she described Trump’s decision to withdraw U.S. forces from northern Syria as one that would have “sickening and predictable consequences.”
The Cold War And The Cheneys
The Cold War was a period of geopolitical tension between the U.S. and Soviet Union that lasted from 1947-1991. Dick Cheney worked in the White House and U.S. Congress during the second half of this period.
He supported having the MX Peacekeeper missile deploy from Wyoming and coordinated with former President Ronald Reagan on the effort. The elder Cheney also was responsible for shaping the future of the U.S. military in an age of profound and rapid change as the Cold War ended, according to his White House vice presidency bio.
Liz Cheney didn’t graduate high school until 1984, but worked for the State Department for five years and the United States Agency for International Development between 1989 and 1993.
During a September speech, she made multiple references to her experiences with the State Department. She recalled her 1992 meeting with Boris Nemtsov, a young Russian who pushed for his country to be a free democracy in the years following the fall of the Iron Curtain. Nemstov was assassinated in 2015 by what Cheney described as Russian President Vladimir Putin’s “thugs.”
Nemtsov was killed “because he posed such a threat to Putin, because of his defense of and his dedication to freedom,” Cheney said.
She also brought up her experience with three foreign nationals who told her they were inspired by the vision for America laid out by former President Ronald Reagan. One of these meetings was with a young man who grew up behind the Iron Curtain and went on to become the minister of defense for Finland.