It is no secret that the Republican party is at a crossroads nationally. On the one hand there are those GOP members who apparently believe the party should be nothing but a cult led by Donald Trump.
One of the most visible and vocal advocates of this position is minority leader Kevin McCarthy of California who desperately wants to be Speaker of the House. Consequently he changes positions more often than a weather vane and is never hampered by the truth. He is merely a Trump puppet who has shown by his actions and words that he has no moral core.
In stark contrast to McCarthy and his followers is Congresswoman Liz Cheney of Wyoming who has just been dumped from her leadership slot in the Republican caucus. She has nothing but contempt and distain for Trump and has refused to go along with his contention that the November 2020 election was stolen from him. But rather than flip-flopping like a dying fish in the bottom of the boat like McCarthy, Cheney has been adamant and vocal about her stance.
Now a number of Republicans who see Trump.as a threat to our democracy have joined forces and are calling for new direction for the party. Five of them wrote an op-ed for The Washington Post. They include two former GOP congressmen (Charlie Dent, Denver Riggleman), Mary Peters who served in the cabinet of George W. Bush, Michael Steele, former chairman of the Republican National Committee and Christine Todd Whitman, former governor of New Jersey.
Here are major portions of their op-ed:
“The Republican Party made a grievous error this week in ousting Rep. Liz Cheney (Wyo.) from the House leadership for telling the truth about Donald Trump’s “big lie,” which has wreaked havoc in our democratic republic by casting doubt over the 2020 election.
Alongside dozens of prominent Republicans, ex-Republicans and independents, we are announcing “A Call for American Renewal,” a nationwide rallying cry against extremist elements within the GOP, and highlighting the urgent need for a new, common-sense coalition.
It is time for a rebirth of the American cause, which we will pursue in partnership and loyal competition with others committed to the preservation of our Union.
Tragically, the Republican Party has lost its way, perverted by fear, lies and self-interest. What’s more, GOP attacks on the integrity of our elections and our institutions pose a continuing and material threat to the nation.
We will not wait forever for the GOP to clean up its act. If we cannot save the Republican Party from itself, we will help save America from extremist elements in the Republican Party.
That means hastening the creation of an alternative: a political movement dedicated to our founding principles and divorced from the GOP’s obsessive cult of personality around a deeply flawed (and twice-impeached) man, whose favorability ratings are reportedly tanking in key swing districts around the country.
Together with our patriotic allies in other parties, our movement will stand against fearmongers, conspiracy theorists and the opportunists who seek unbridled power.
We plan to invest in a deeper bench of effective leaders in cities and states across the country while recruiting a new generation of principled, pragmatic citizens to the cause.
America cannot have just one party committed to preservation of its democratic institutions. There must be at least two, if not more.
With Cheney’s dismissal from House leadership, the battle for the soul of the Republican Party — and our country — is not over. It is just beginning, which is why we are forming a “resistance of the rational” against the radicals.
We still hope for a healthy, thriving Republican Party, but we are no longer holding our breath.
Next month, we will convene a nationwide town hall open to all Americans and featuring current and former U.S. leaders who will lay out where we must go from here, how we can ensure a freer America and how all citizens can join the fight.
Extremists may have fired the first shot in this moral struggle for America’s future, but with truth as our lodestar, those laboring to renew America will fire the last.”