CNN Editor: ‘Cheney Looks Likely to Lose — and She Knows It’

Kent Nishimura / Los Angeles Times via Getty Images

Rep. Liz Cheney (R-WY) knows she is likely to lose the Wyoming primary to Donald Trump-endorsed Harriet Hageman on August 16, CNN editor-at-large Chris Cillizza suggested Monday.

“Cheney looks likely to lose — and she knows it,” Cillizza wrote. “What she also knows is that, at least in her mind, this isn’t the end of her political career.”

Cheney is about 30 points behind in the polls to Hageman, who has surged with second quarter fundraising by capitalizing off Cheney’s alliance with the Democrats on the partisan January 6 Committee.

JACKSON, WY - JUNE 14: Republican congressional candidate Harriet Hageman meets attendees at a rally at the Teton County Fair & Rodeo Grounds on June 14, 2022 in Jackson, Wyoming. Hageman, who has been endorsed by former President Donald Trump, is running against Rep. Liz Cheney (R-WY) in the August 16 GOP primary. (Photo by Natalie Behring/Getty Images)

Congressional candidate Harriet Hageman meets attendees at a rally at the Teton County Fair & Rodeo Grounds on June 14, 2022, in Jackson, Wyoming. (Natalie Behring/Getty Images)

The establishment media has noted Cheney’s unlikely chances of retaining her seat and have begun hyping her as a presidential candidate in 2024. Yet Cheney is only polling around 2 percent in a potential GOP primary field that includes former President Donald Trump’s dominating polling lead of 53 percent.

If Cheney does run, her poor polling suggests she could run as an independent. “The real question seems to be then not whether Cheney runs — she sounded to all the world like that decision is mostly made — but rather whether she would have any sort of impact on the 2024 race,” Cillizza wrote.

Cillizza pointed out that if Cheney ran as an independent, she could hurt former President Donald Trump’s chances of reclaiming the Oval Office. Cheney has proposed never to allow Trump near the White House ever again.

“Assuming Trump is the Republican nominee, such a candidacy could skim off enough votes to potentially hamstring the former President’s chances of winning,” he wrote. “Even under that scenario, however, Cheney would function as a spoiler — trying to keep Trump from the White House — rather than as a viable candidate to be president.”

On Sunday, Cheney told CNN’s Jake Tapper she will make a decision on her presidential ambitions “down the road.”

Meanwhile, Cheney is spending her primary campaign season in the January 6 Committee spotlight. “We have considerably more to do. We have far more evidence to share with the American people, and more to gather,” Cheney said on Thursday.

Cheney has also said she is staying away from Wyoming because she does not want to be around crazy people. “I’m not going to convince the crazies and I reject the crazies,” Cheney said about a Republican event for Wyoming voters. In 2020, Trump won the state of Wyoming in 2020 with nearly 70 percent of the vote.

Cheney’s odds of winning the Wyoming primary are only slightly higher than her 2024 polling. Her odds of winning the contest are pegged at 5 cents on the dollar, PredictIt’s betting odds show. Hageman is favored to handily defeat Cheney by 95 cents on the dollar.

Follow Wendell Husebø on Twitter and Gettr @WendellHusebø. He is the author of Politics of Slave Morality. 


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