I went out for breakfast this morning here in Forth Worth at the West Side cafe, because they have some amazing eggs and salsa. The chicken-fried steak is also a killer.
But, as we were on the way there, I was listening to Mark Davis on Salem Media. On his show, he had Wyoming columnist and publisher emeritus for Cowboy State Daily, Bill Sniffin. Hold on to your hats, grab your coffee or something, but he just had a prediction that made me a bit concerned: that there was a possibility that Cheney could pull it out.
From veteran columnist @BillSniffin @cowboy_daily in #Wyoming: Ignore big poll leads for #HarrietHageman; #LizCheney's name, war chest still matter, and her begging for Democrat crossover votes will give her a chance. He still predicts a Hageman win, but by a sliver. pic.twitter.com/VySrv9zOBn
— Mark Davis (@MarkDavis) August 16, 2022
Now we’ve all been looking at polls of Harriet Hageman beating up on Cheney by anywhere from 25 to 30 points, which would seem fairly decisive. Of course, polls are polls and the actual race will likely be closer than that. But still, one would think, not that close.
However, Sniffin is looking at a variety of factors, starting with the fact that Wyoming is a low voter state and this is a primary, so small numbers of voters could potentially sway things. Not to mention the money and the ads that Cheney has poured into the state. But he’s highlighting these four factors.
1) Too much voter apathy among traditional Republicans who assume Hageman will win easily. Harriet’s overall vote total could be lower than expected among traditional Republican voters because of the time of year and the fact it is not a presidential election.
2) Cheney will hold on to a percentage of her traditional voters. Some 75,183 Republicans voted for her in 2018 and 78,870 voted for her in 2020. The power of incumbency will come into play.
3) And of course, there are the so-called RINO’s. These are long-time registered “Republicans In Name Only” who are naturally moderate or who dislike former president Donald Trump. They will vote for Cheney in this proxy battle between Cheney and Trump.
4) And the big one will be the numbers of cross-over voters from Democrat and Independent ranks to vote in the Republican primary. This number will be over 20,000, which is huge when you figure the winner in this race will barely get 60,000 votes.
He’s gone back and forth a bit on it and his final prediction was that Hageman was going to pull it out but it would be very close. I should note he also had previously predicted Cheney would drop out which did not turn out to be true.
I’m not from Wyoming, so I don’t have a local’s perspective on that prediction. But I’m not sure I believe there’s going to be that many crossover votes. That seems like a tremendous amount. And while the Democrats are certainly stoking the hate against Trump in the state, it’s still a state that has very few Democrats. And though Cheney has been pouring a lot of money in, Hageman has been making the rounds in the state for months, while Cheney has been blowing things off.
Then again, there’s a ton of anger at Liz Cheney among Republicans in Wyoming. That’s going to power a lot of them, more than in a normal primary in a midterm year. There are a lot of people who have been waiting with bated breath as we’ve noted in the past. Even CNN had trouble finding folks in Wyoming at Frontier Days who would say they were voting for Cheney. While people are not always honest with reporters about their political thoughts, these folks were not holding back.
Now, there’s no doubt if it’s close that we’ll be hearing what a comeback she had and they’ll spin that against Trump, without talking about the crossover vote.
So bottom line, we’ll see, but take nothing for granted. And if you know people in Wyoming, make sure they’re getting out and voting for Hageman. Let’s end this thing and start a recovery away from folks like Cheney and her ilk.