By the time most people went to bed on Tuesday evening, it was already abundantly clear that Rep. Liz Cheney had not just lost her Republican primary, but she had gotten obliterated. The next morning provided an even clearer picture, showing the soon-to-be ex-congresswoman lost by nearly 40 points.
With the primary election in the books, the only thing left was to deal with the reaction. Unfortunately, Cheney and the establishment-loving figures backing her learned zero lessons from the crushing defeat. In fact, they are only doubling down on what so clearly didn’t work.
Here’s a helpful meme to illustrate things.
— DrChimp (@Doc_Chimpanzee) August 17, 2022
Cheney could have easily taken her electoral rebuke, done a few minutes of introspection, and come to some level of realization that her loss was in no way simply about her being a critic of Donald Trump. Instead, she rushed to the first leftwing morning show that would have her, showing she has all the self-awareness of a turnip.
"It is something that I'm thinking about, and I'll make a decision in the coming months."
— Vaughn Hillyard (@VaughnHillyard) August 17, 2022
Would that be the same “cult of personality” that renominated Gov. Brian Kemp by a landslide in Georgia despite Trump’s heavy opposition? Or that overwhelmingly voted for Dan Crenshaw in Texas’s primary despite Trump supporters believing he’s akin to John McCain? By golly, it’s almost as if the chief issue in Cheney’s loss wasn’t that she didn’t like the orange man. Plenty of GOP politicians who have never said the 2020 election is stolen and aren’t big on Trump won their primaries.
And that’s really what this comes down to. Cheney and her supporters need her to be the victim of a grossly unfair cult of personality that will cast anyone aside who doesn’t absolutely adore Donald Trump. That’s a caraicature of the GOP that plays well on CNN and CBS News, but it’s absolutely not the reality on the ground.
Cheney is not an innocent bystander who just took a stand, though that’s exactly what she wants to present herself as. Instead, she chose to lock arms with Democrats to push an evidence-free narrative via the January 6th committee. Remember the “seven-step plan” to overturn the 2020 election she assured us she would prove? We are about a dozen hearings in and she’s yet to even provide evidence of step one.
That wasn’t lost on the voters of Wyoming voters over the last several months. They saw a woman who didn’t care about them or their concerns. They saw a woman who couldn’t be bothered to do anything but bolster Democrat prospects during a key mid-term election in order to feed into a petty grievance.
Then there’s the fact that Cheney’s vision of the world is simply not popular anymore. Republicans are sick of defense-industry simps who will never admit they were wrong about any of their chosen foreign incursions. What was more harmful to the country? January 6th or the Iraq War? It’s not even close when you start counting the bodies, yet Cheney has never once shown an ounce of attrition. Instead, she still stubbornly attacks those who dare to call for any accountability.
Rand and I do have one thing in common, though. We’re both 5’2” tall. https://t.co/l0XebRLW3Q
— Liz Cheney (@Liz_Cheney) December 10, 2020
What happened in Wyoming’s GOP primary is not complicated. Cheney forgot that she has actual constituents to answer to, instead existing on delusions of grandeur within the DC bubble. Cheney also refused to give an inch on any of her more detestable political positions. In the end, that is why she’ll be out of the House next January.
But again, she won’t learn that lesson, nor will the multitude of “principles first” conservatives on the right who wouldn’t actually know what a principle is if it slapped them in the face. Voters still matter, and you can’t just keep spitting in their face, to the point of actively helping Nancy Pelosi achieve her goals, and expect there to be no consequences. Cheney did not lose because she opposes Trump. She lost because she actively sought to harm the very people who put her in office. That she won’t at least own that only makes her a more pathetic figure.