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Former Vice President Dick Cheney looks on as his daughter Rep. Liz Cheney takes the oath of office, Jan. 3, 2017. Photo: Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call

Former Vice President Dick Cheney and House GOP Conference Chair Liz Cheney have pulled a power play against President Trump’s attempt to overthrow the election.

Driving the news: The elder Cheney helped pull together an op-ed from all 10 living former defense secretaries to warn against military intervention to thwart a transfer of power. Liz Cheney pounded out a 21-page argument against plans to try to stall certification of Biden's win.

Why it matters: Each has said little about President Trump over the past four years. But now that they're speaking out, they're making it count — with muscular, blunt cases against obstruction of the inevitable.

  • Liz Cheney has ambitions to run for the White House or House speaker. Her dad remains a formidable force in establishment Republican politics.

Between the lines: A source familiar with the Cheneys' thinking tells Axios that given their reverence for the power of the executive, they're offended by Trump's norm-busting behavior and the futile resistance to Biden's victory.

  • "They're reestablishing the traditional Republican channel so that in the post-Trump era, people will be comfortable running at that segment of the party, rather than just the populist channel that Trump exploited," the source said.
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Go deeper

Scoop: GOP ignored its early fears about Marjorie Taylor Greene

Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene. Photo: Stefani Reynolds/Bloomberg via Getty Images

During previously unreported meetings last summer, House Republican leaders discussed — but then largely set aside — fears that QAnon-supporting conspiracy theorist Marjorie Taylor Greene would end up a flaming trainwreck for their party.

Why it matters: Greene has emerged not just as an embarrassment but a challenge for the GOP, with House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy now forced to weigh whether to maintain his policy of sanctioning members who make dangerous statements.

The Mischief Makers

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

Several Republican and Democratic lawmakers are emerging as troublemakers within their parties and political thorns for their leadership.

Why it matters: We're calling this group "The Mischief Makers" — members who threaten to upend party unity — the theme eclipsing Washington at the moment — and potentially jeopardize the Democrats' or Republicans' position heading into the 2022 midterms.

Updated 2 hours ago - World

UK government: Kremlin has plan "to install pro-Russian leadership" in Ukraine

British Foreign Secretary Elizabeth Truss. Photo: Gints Ivuskans / AFP via Getty Images

The United Kingdom's Foreign Secretary on Saturday night said the government has "information that indicates the Russian Government is looking to install a pro-Russian leader in Kyiv as it considers whether to invade and occupy Ukraine."

Driving the news: U.S. National Security Council spokeswoman Emily Horne called the intelligence "deeply concerning" in a statement to Axios. The Biden administration has said Russia is actively manufacturing a pretext for invasion and warned that Putin could use joint military exercises in Belarus as cover to invade from the north.