Liz Cheney spoke in Arizona and urged people to vote for the Democratic candidates for Governor and Secretary of State. Both candidates have said that they will accept the results of the election only if they win. A hard-right Republican who voted with Trump almost every time, Cheney has decided that preserving democracy matters more than party.

Rep. Liz Cheney brought her unflinching criticism of the Republican Party to Tempe Wednesday, calling out the GOP’s “Putin wing” and saying the threats to democracy are so serious she recommends voting for Democrats in two high-profile Arizona races.

“The country is at the edge of an abyss,” Cheney, R-Wyo., said during a talk with the McCain Institute for International Leadership at Arizona State University.

“For almost 40 years now, I’ve been voting Republican. I don’t know that I have ever voted for a Democrat,” Cheney said, “but if I lived in Arizona now, I absolutely would for governor and secretary of state.

“We cannot be in a position where we elect people who will not fundamentally uphold the sanctity of elections. That’s got to be more important than anything else.”

Cheney cited Kari Lake, the GOP’s gubernatorial nominee, and state Rep. Mark Finchem, R-Oro Valley, who is running for secretary of state, for their unwillingness to pledge to accept the results of the upcoming elections. 

“I spend a lot of time thinking about Arizona,” Cheney said. “If you think about elections that are happening now, in Arizona today, you have a candidate for governor in Kari Lake, you have a candidate for secretary of state in Mark Finchem, both of whom have said … they will only honor the results of an election if they agree with it.

“They’ve looked at the law, the facts, the rulings of the courts and they’ve said it doesn’t matter to them. If you care about democracy, and you care about the survival of our republic, then you need to understand — we all have to understand — we cannot give people power who have told us that they will not honor elections. Elections are the foundation of our republic.”