Liz Cheney Could Lose GOP Primary, Establishment Media Acknowledge

Simi Valley, CA, Wednesday, June 29, 2022 - U.S. Representative (R) Liz Cheney, the vice-chair of the congressional committee investigating Jan. 6, speaks at the Reagan Library as part of its series on the future of the GOP. (Robert Gauthier/Los Angeles Times via Getty Images)
Robert Gauthier/Los Angeles Times via Getty

Embattled Rep. Liz Cheney (R-WY) is in danger of losing the August 16 Republican primary to Trump-endorsed Harriet Hageman, the establishment media acknowledged over the weekend.

On Saturday, the New York Times’s Kate Kelly and  wrote a 1,418 word article that raised concerns Cheney could lose her race next month. Highlighting that Democrat donors have begun funding Cheney’s reelection campaign, the Times also noted Cheney has solicited votes from Democrats in an attempt to overcome a large polling gap:

Polling suggests that she came into the summer trailing Harriet Hageman, her rival in the Republican primary, which will be held on Aug. 16. Last month, Ms. Cheney’s campaign sent mailers to registered Democrats with instructions on how to change parties ahead of the primary — a move that would allow them to vote for her.

Ms. Cheney had previously said she would not take such a step, and it is unclear how successful the gambit will be in a state where the number of registered Republicans dwarfs that of Democrats.

On Thursday, CNN’s Harry Enten warned readers “Liz Cheney is in a lot of trouble in Wyoming” because [a] look at the data reveals that Cheney should be regarded as the clear underdog in her efforts to retain her seat.”

Cheney, who has helped Rep. Nancy Pelosi’s (D-CA) partisan January 6 committee, has been in the spotlight quite a bit during televised hearings. CNN cautioned Chaney’s outsized press coverage should not be misunderstood as popularity in Wyoming.

“We shouldn’t mistake adoring press coverage and bipartisan bona fides for popularity in the place where popularity matters most for Cheney: Wyoming,” the article read. “It’s no wonder that the betting markets give her less than a 10% chance of earning another term in office.”

Former Senator Joe Lieberman speaks with Representative Liz Cheney, a Republican from Wyoming, right, ahead of a Presidential Medal of Freedom ceremony with US President Joe Biden, not pictured, in the East Room of the White House in Washington, D.C., US, on Thursday, July 7, 2022. (Al Drago/Bloomberg via Getty Images)

While spending quite a bit of time in Washington, DC, and not on the Wyoming campaign trail, Cheney even accepted President Biden’s Thursday invitation to attend the televised Medal of Freedom ceremony 1,711 miles away from Casper, Wyoming.

USA Today took note of Cheney’s presence at the White House event and acknowledged its unprecedented nature. “It’s typically unheard of for a Republican lawmaker in the middle of a bruising primary fight to be seen at a high-profile White House event of a Democratic president,” the article said. “But Cheney, vice chair of the committee investigating the Jan. 6, 2021 attack on the Capitol, is an exception.”

The article also raised red flags as to Cheney’s lack of support with Wyoming Republicans, while being embraced by Democrats: “As she seeks a fourth-term to represent Wyoming’s sole seat in Congress, Cheney is at odds with most of the Republican Party – and a sudden hero to many liberals – warning last week that “Republicans cannot both be loyal to Donald Trump and loyal to the Constitution.”

Cheney’s absence from the Cowboy State has been a large issue in the voters’ minds. “She understands she has to campaign and earn the trust of voters — I would certainly like to see her here more,” state Rep. Landon Brown (R) told the Times.

But Cheney has her own reasons for staying in Washington. “I’m not going to convince the crazies and I reject the crazies,” Cheney said about a Republican event for Wyoming voters in February.

Hageman has pushed back on Cheney’s opinion of Wyoming voters. “Liz Cheney has lost Wyoming. Liz Cheney doesn’t live in Wyoming. She doesn’t represent us,” Hageman told Breitbart News. “She doesn’t represent our values.”

Cheney has been in hot water with the GOP after opposing former President Donald Trump, voting to impeach him, and participating in the January 6 Committee, which has sought to investigate the January 6 Capitol incident without focusing on the alleged FBI informants there.

Cheney’s conduct has drawn condemnation from the Wyoming Republican Party and House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy. After the Wyoming GOP voted in November to no longer recognize her as a Republican, McCarthy announced in February his endorsement of Hageman to defeat Cheney, a rare move for a minority leader.

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


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