Liz Cheney is giving us a peek at what her future looks like
Analysis by Chris Cillizza, CNN Editor-at-largeUpdated: Fri, 28 Oct 2022 22:30:06 GMTSource: CNNWyoming Republican Rep. Liz Cheney will be leaving Congress soon, but she has pledged to remain active iAnalysis by Chris Cillizza, CNN Editor-at-large
Updated: Fri, 28 Oct 2022 22:30:06 GMT
Wyoming Republican Rep. Liz Cheney will be leaving Congress soon, but she has pledged to remain active in national politics -- doing everything she can to keep Donald Trump from the White House and election deniers from winning political offices.
We got a clearer look at what that future for Cheney might look like this week.
First, she endorsed Michigan Democratic Rep. Elissa Slotkin in a nip-and-tuck race for Michigan's 7th District. Cheney called Slotkin, who she serves with on the House Armed Services Committee, "a good and honorable public servant" who is "in this for the right reasons." Cheney is also set to campaign with Slotkin next week.
Slotkin is facing Republican state Sen. Tom Barrett in a race widely regarded as a pure toss up. Barrett said at a recent debate that he has "legitimate concerns" about how the 2020 election was conducted, even though there is no evidence that widespread fraud took place.
Second, Cheney's PAC is running ads that slam two Arizona Republicans -- gubernatorial nominee Kari Lake and secretary of state nominee Mark Finchem -- for their election denialism.
"You have a candidate for governor, Kari Lake, you have a candidate for secretary of state, Mark Finchem, both of whom have said that they will only honor the results of an election if they agree with it," Cheney says in the ad, which the PAC is spending $500,000 on. "And if you care about the survival of our republic, we cannot give people power who will not honor elections."
This is what the near-future is going to look like for Cheney, it seems. She has been cast out of the modern Republican Party -- first removed from her role as the third-ranking Republican in the House last year and then convincingly beaten in an August primary.
She is, at the moment, a politician without a home.
"I'm going to make sure Donald Trump, I'm going to do everything I can to make sure he is not the nominee," Cheney said last month about the 2024 presidential race. "And if he is the nominee, I won't be a Republican."
While there's no guarantee, Trump is a) expected to run again for president and b) is the frontrunner for the GOP nomination.
What Cheney's initial moves after her primary loss suggest is that she is moving more toward breaking away entirely from the Republican Party in favor of trying to form a new party.
"The party has either to come back from where we are right now, which is a very dangerous and toxic place, or the party will splinter and there will be a new conservative party that rises," Cheney predicted recently.
What looks most likely is that the GOP does splinter -- although it's debatable how big (or small) the Cheney wing of that splinter group actually is. And it now seems clear that Cheney will attempt to lead that group -- possibly by running for president as an independent with a common-sense conservative platform.
The Point: The Republican Party has made clear that it wants no part of Liz Cheney. And with her recent moves, she seems to be leaving it behind too.