There might be no more severe case of Trump Derangement Syndrome than the one from which Rep. Liz Cheney (R-WY) suffers. Her relentless hounding of the 45th president and likely 2024 Republican candidate drove her to form an alliance with some of the same Democrats who despised and often publicly flayed her father, when he was George W. Bush’s VP. Cheney’s obsession also has made her something of a pariah within her own party and could mean the end of her political career. So, what drove her to it?
Is the Wyoming representative so infused with loyalty to a party she believed Trump tainted that she was willing to sacrifice it all to save the GOP from itself or from him? Character like that is rare indeed on Capitol Hill, and altruism is not a trait for which the Cheney family is known. That leaves, as the only logical alternative, the likelihood that Liz Cheney’s burgeoning hubris leads her to believe herself so indispensable to a glorious neoconservative future that the GOP and its voting base would turn to her and abandon Trumpist America First populism.
Judging by the mood in her home state, that second theory is not playing out well for Cheney. After being elbowed sharply by a Wyoming GOP censure, she finds herself struggling so hard to avoid losing the primary that she reportedly tried to persuade Democrat voters in the state to switch parties and vote for her against Trump-endorsed challenger Harriet Hageman.
The primary is Aug. 2, and the latest Casper Star-Tribune poll has the outspoken anti-Trumper trailing Hagerman by 22 percentage points. Perhaps seeing the writing on the wall, Cheney is hinting at a 2024 White House run.
That’s right. Liz Cheney 2024 bumper stickers may already be in the process of being printed by the tens. She was quizzed about it on July 24 during an appearance on the cable news network that once considered even the name Cheney to be an abomination but now loves Liz because she says mean things about Trump. Jake Tapper wanted to know Cheney’s 2024 intentions, and she did not rule it out. In fact, she sounded very much like someone who may already be mentally forming an exploratory committee:
“At this point, I have not made a decision about 2024. I am really very focused on the substance of what we have to do on the select committee, very focused on the work that I have to do to represent the people of Wyoming, and I’ll make a decision about 2024 down the road.”
Liz Cheney 2024?
There are rumors in certain media circles that Democrats are even cheering her on. And why wouldn’t they? For them, it would be a win-win situation. If hell froze over and Cheney landed the Republican Party 2024 nomination, many millions of conservative voters would rather choke on a Hillary Clinton bobblehead than pull the lever for Trump’s other arch nemesis, thus assuring victory for the Democrat contender. If, on the other hand, presidential candidate Cheney were to win the election, Democrats would find themselves dealing with the most compliant Republican president they have ever seen and are ever likely to see.
It is indeed still both remarkable and somewhat puzzling that the woman whose voting record suggested very strong support for then-President Trump’s agenda turned on him so zealously. Perhaps there is another story there altogether that Americans have not yet heard.
It looks as though a seat for Cheney in the 118th Congress is not in the cards but neither Trump nor the Republican Party has heard the last of her quite yet. A White House run seems laughable but should not be counted out. After all, the past two years have brought a virus that attacks people who are walking around but not those who are sitting, a rash of very compelling UFO sightings, murder hornets, cicada swarms, a “firenado” in California, a real-life no-fooling investigation into Hunter Biden’s business dealings, and now a Monkeypox outbreak. At this point, Liz Cheney 2024 would be par for the course in our bizarre new world.