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Republican Cheney endorses Democrat Elissa Slotkin in Michigan race

Rep. Elissa Slotkin (D-Mich.) speaks at an Oct. 16 campaign rally in East Lansing, Mich. (Bill Pugliano/Getty Images)

Republican Rep. Liz Cheney (Wyo.) is for the first time publicly supporting a Democratic congressional candidate, with plans to campaign next week for Rep. Elissa Slotkin (Mich.).

Cheney, who at one point held the No. 3 leadership position in the House GOP caucus, acknowledged in a statement that she and Slotkin have policy differences but cited other reasons for her decision.

“I’m proud to endorse Elissa Slotkin,” Cheney wrote. “Serving together on the Armed Services Committee, I have come to know Elissa as a good and honorable public servant who works hard for the people she represents, wants what’s best for the country, and is in this for the right reasons.”

Cheney is scheduled to appear with Slotkin on Tuesday in Lansing, Mich., for what is being billed as an “Evening for Patriotism and Bipartisanship.”

“While Elissa and I have our policy disagreements, at a time when our nation is facing threats at home and abroad, we need serious, responsible, substantive members like Elissa in Congress,” Cheney said. “I encourage all voters in the 7th district — Republicans, Democrats, and Independents — to support her in this election.”

Slotkin faces Republican Tom Barrett, a state senator, in a competitive race in Michigan’s 7th Congressional District. Barrett has continued to dispute the results of the 2020 presidential election, which was a factor in Cheney’s decision, according to a person familiar with her thinking who spoke on the condition of anonymity to share more freely.

Besides their shared committee work, Cheney and Slotkin both have backgrounds in national security, with Cheney having previously served in the State Department and Slotkin having worked in the CIA and Defense Department.

“At a moment when the very heart of our democracy is being challenged, Rep. Cheney’s voice has been critical,” Slotkin said.

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Cheney will be leaving Congress at the end of this term after losing in a Republican primary to a challenger backed by former president Donald Trump. Cheney has become a fierce Trump critic in her capacity as vice chairwoman of the House select committee investigating the Jan. 6, 2021, attack on the U.S. Capitol by a pro-Trump mob.

Slotkin has frequently talked about the need for bipartisanship.

“Something that is very important to me as a person and as a candidate is that in between those tours in Iraq, I was working for whoever was my commander in chief,” she said at a recent town hall event in Corunna, Mich., a conservative part of her district.

Earlier this month, Cheney urged voters in Arizona to reject Republican nominees for governor and secretary of state, describing them as threats to democracy because they have worked to overturn election results in 2020 and indicated they may not accept the outcome this year.

“If you care about democracy, and you care about the survival of our republic, then you need to understand, we all have to understand, that we cannot give people power who have told us that they will not honor elections,” Cheney said during an appearance at Arizona State University.

Marianna Sotomayor contributed to this report.

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Divided government: Republicans narrowly won back control of the House, while Democrats will keep control of the Senate, creating a split Congress.

What the results mean for 2024: A Republican Party red wave seems to be a ripple after Republicans fell short in the Senate and narrowly won control in the House. Donald Trump announced his 2024 presidential campaign shortly after the midterms. Here are the top 10 2024 presidential candidates for the Republicans and Democrats.

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