Dear Commons Community,
The New York Times has a featured article this morning entitled, “Liz Cheney Is Ready to Lose. But She’s Not Ready to Quit.” Acknowledging that she might not win her primary battle in Wyoming, she says her crusade to stop Donald J. Trump will continue. Restoring a “very sick” G.O.P. will take years, she says, “if it can be healed.” Here is an excerpt.
“It was just over a month before her primary, but Representative Liz Cheney of Wyoming was nowhere near the voters weighing her future.
Ms. Cheney was instead huddled with fellow lawmakers and aides in the Capitol complex, bucking up her allies in a cause she believes is more important than her House seat: ridding American politics of former President Donald J. Trump and his influence.
“The nine of us have done more to prevent Trump from ever regaining power than any group to date,” she said to fellow members of the panel investigating Mr. Trump’s involvement in the Jan. 6 Capitol attack. “We can’t let up.”
The most closely watched primary of 2022 has not become much of a race at all. Polls show Ms. Cheney losing badly to her rival, Harriet Hageman, Mr. Trump’s vehicle for revenge, and the congresswoman has been all but driven out of her Trump-loving state, in part because of death threats, her office says.
Yet for Ms. Cheney, the race stopped being about political survival months ago. Instead, she has used the Aug. 16 contest as a sort of high-profile stage for her martyrdom — and a proving ground for her new crusade. She used the only debate to tell voters to “vote for somebody else” if they wanted a politician who would violate their oath of office. Last week, she enlisted her father, former Vice President Dick Cheney, to cut an ad calling Mr. Trump a “coward” who represents the greatest threat to America in the history of the republic.
In a state where Mr. Trump won 70 percent of the vote two years ago, Ms. Cheney might as well be asking ranchers to go vegan.
“If the cost of standing up for the Constitution is losing the House seat, then that’s a price I’m willing to pay,” she said in an interview last week in the conference room of a Cheyenne bank.
The 56-year-old daughter of a politician who once had visions of rising to the top of the House leadership — but landed as vice president instead — has become arguably the most consequential rank-and-file member of Congress in modern times. Few others have so aggressively used the levers of the office to seek to reroute the course of American politics — but, in doing so, she has effectively sacrificed her own future in the institution she grew up to revere.
Ms. Cheney’s relentless focus on Mr. Trump has driven speculation — even among longtime family friends — that she is preparing to run for president. She has done little to dissuade such talk.”
Ms. Cheney will be a person to watch in the months and years to come regardless of what happens in next week’s primary.