Remember when Rep. Liz Cheney was going to enjoy a massive new platform for voting to impeach Donald Trump? Well, that never materialized and she’s instead been relegated to the role of pet-Republican for Nancy Pelosi’s January 6th committee. Yet, an election is still upcoming and exactly what happens to Cheney is of interest. Will she end up booted out of Congress, much to the chagrin of establishment Republicans everywhere?
On that front, Trump made his endorsement, throwing his weight behind Harriet Hageman in the GOP primary for the seat currently held by Cheney. For her part, Hageman is an intriguing candidate, though, perhaps a strange one given her past ties to Cheney.
This per Politico.
Hageman would be an unconventional candidate, should she choose to run. She donated to Cheney’s 2014 and 2016 campaigns and served on Cheney’s leadership team during her short-lived 2014 Senate run. She lavished praise on Cheney in a 2018 Facebook post and, as of Tuesday evening, her website included a picture of her with the congresswoman.
But Hageman pointedly criticized Cheney in her Wednesday letter, saying that the state Republican Party’s decision to censure the congresswoman “sent the strong message that we expect our elected officials to respect the views and values of the people who elected them. Accountability is key and I am proud of our party for demanding it.”
I can see Hageman’s prior connections to who she’s running against as both being positive and negative. Obviously, it will complicate matters for Hageman in her attempts to attack Cheney. But the same applies in reverse, with Cheney having to decide just how hard she wants to go on someone she once had on her leadership team. And Hageman certainly has plenty of fodder to make use of regarding the incumbent’s more recent positions. The comment about respecting the views and values of the voters is one that will resonate.
As I’ve said many times, Cheney’s problem is not that she dissented from the party line, even regarding January 6th. Lots of Republicans have dissented on various levels regarding that event, including Trump-buddy Lindsey Graham. Rather, it’s how she did it and the fact that she has tried to sink her own party in the process.
After Trump made his endorsement, Cheney fired back with this.
Here’s a sound bite for you: Bring it. pic.twitter.com/VmET1JUs12
— Liz Cheney (@Liz_Cheney) September 9, 2021
I mean, Trump’s criticism is valid, though. She has become a top provider of sound bites for the Democratic Party as she sidles up to Pelosi and continues to push a delusional view of what happened at the Capitol on January 6th. When even the Biden-run FBI has found zero evidence of any grand plot or coordination between anyone, much less with Trump, what exactly are we still investigating? But Cheney seems content to keep chasing that coveted permanent analyst slot on CNN.
Again, Cheney’s problem is not just that she’s anti-Trump. There will be anti-Trump and Trump-skeptical Republicans who win House seats in 2022, whether you agree with them or not. Rather, Cheney’s problem is that she’s based her entire electoral persona around being anti-Trump and allying with Democrats. And she did that while being from the State of Wyoming.
That’s not a recipe for success, and it leaves me wondering exactly what her strategy to win is. Does she even have one? Or does she know she’s going to lose and wants to make sure she picks up as much left-wing cred as possible beforehand? She may think banging her head into a wall is virtuous, but in the end, she’s still just banging her head into a wall. This race will be very fun to follow so stay tuned.