Here’s why Nikki Haley and John Cornyn don’t understand the Jan. 6 debate
Gage Skidmore.

Sen. John Cornyn (R-TX) and former Trump UN Ambassador Nikki Haley have shown in recent comments that they do not understand the stakes of the Jan. 6 insurrection, according to a new CNN analysis.

CNN editor-at-large Chris Cillizza noted Haley's response to a question about the ongoing feud between Donald Trump and Mike Pence on the question of whether Pence could have overturned the 2020 presidential election.

"I will always say, I'm not a fan of Republicans going after Republicans because the only ones that win when that happens are the Democrats and the media, and we have to keep our eyes on 2022," Haley said.

Cillizza suggested Haley was missing the big picture by focusing on political implications.

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"She's not wrong from a purely political standpoint. But she is also sort of missing the point -- and, in so doing, minimizing exactly what's at stake here," Cillizza wrote. "We are not talking about a policy disagreement between Trump and Pence. This isn't about immigration or trade or education. At root, this fight is about the health of American democracy...The stakes of that fight are massive. It's about protecting both free and fair elections and the peaceful transfer of power -- two traits that sit at the heart of American democracy. And it's not a 'reasonable people can disagree' sort of issue."

Cillizza also noted Cornyn told CNN, "I think Republicans ought to stop shooting at Republicans" and offered a similar analysis.

"Which, again, isn't wrong politically. The more Republicans fight amongst themselves, the less time they dedicate to shining a light on Biden and the Democrats. But it fundamentally misunderstands -- and underestimates -- what is going on here," he explained. "The battle lines here are not Trump versus Pence or the RNC versus Cheney and Kinzinger. It's democracy versus an attempt to overthrow that democracy."

Read the full analysis.