Liz Cheney's conservative street cred is obvious on broad range of issues

Liz Cheney's conservative street cred is obvious on broad range of issues
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CHEYENNE, Wyoming — Republican U.S. Rep. Liz Cheney says her focus right now and for the 2022 midterm elections will be to fight for the concerns of the people of Wyoming and against policies from the Biden administration that hurt her home state and country.

STAR VALLEY, Wyoming — Rep. Liz Cheney speaking with constituents at a hospital groundbreaking ceremony this week in her home state.
(Photo courtesy of staff)


“That means across the board, being an advocate for and a fighter for the policies that matter to us,” Cheney said in an interview with the Washington Examiner as she peeled off a list, including energy, defense, trade, agriculture, and numerous issues involving the Constitution and the rule of law.

Cheney, who holds a solidly conservative voting record, says she faces multiple challengers for the seat she has held since 2017. Those challenges are largely due to her vote to impeach former President Donald Trump following the Jan. 6 riot at the Capitol and her appointment by Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi to the House Select Committee to investigate the event.

“I have, I think, nine opponents now," she said. "One of them will have President Trump's endorsement. And the choice for the people of Wyoming will be, are you going to vote for somebody who has pledged their loyalty and allegiance to one person? Or are you going to vote for the representative who's fighting for Wyoming and is going to be loyal and faithful to the Constitution?”

“That will be a very clear distinction," she continued. "And that'll be one of the main areas of foundation of the race.”

How Wyoming voters feel about it is complicated. Social media posts and recent polling show she is vulnerable — but if you listen to voters, you find their concerns are more nuanced. In particular, they wonder if their congresswoman lumps all people who voted for Trump in the same category as the people who broke the law in January.

That distinction matters in a state that voted robustly for both Trump and Cheney, with the former president earning 69.94% of the vote and Cheney earning a bit less at 68.6%.

Cheney says she would never lump every person who voted for Trump in the same category as people who clearly broke the law that day.

“There were people who came to the rally on Jan. 6, at the Ellipse, who thought that they were doing their patriotic duty and who were there to express their First Amendment rights. And that is not the concern. And frankly, the vast majority of people who supported the Trump policies and who supported President Trump also believe deeply in the peaceful transfer of power," she said. "And so, the issue is, really, one of the necessity to have an investigation, to understand exactly what led to Jan. 6, to get the facts, to understand how the planning works, to understand how the financing works and to recognize the gravity of that moment in our history and the unprecedented nature of what happened.”

“That is why we need the investigation.”

Cheney, who was crisscrossing the state to talk with voters when we had our interview, said she continues to have good conversations with voters all across Wyoming about these distinctions.

The daughter of former Vice President Dick Cheney and historian-author Lynne Cheney said the select committee will go where the facts lead it, with no preconceived conclusions. She believes the committee will benefit people who supported Trump because it will focus on exactly who did it rather than allowing the media to blame all Trump supporters and rally attendees generically.

But that was far from Cheney's main topic.

For example, as the delta variant of the coronavirus begins to create more economic, social, and health turmoil this summer, Cheney has a clear message.

“China clearly bears responsibility for the spread of the virus around the world," she said. "They knew that they had human-to-human transmission, that they allowed people to travel from Wuhan to the rest of the world, even though they shut down travel into the rest of China. So they bear direct responsibility for the cost in human lives and the devastation to economies. And I think that they ought to pay restitution for that."

“If anybody continues to view them as sort of benign actor, I think that that is not supported by the facts," she continued. "And so, I think COVID has been a real wake-up call for people, in terms of our allies around the world, recognizing the role that China plays.”

The conservative hawk said she thinks it is critically important for the government to organize itself more effectively to defeat the threat China poses across every major spectrum, “whether it's intellectual property or cyber or artificial intelligence or the military.”

Cheney said the Chinese Communist Party conducts itself as if its leaders believe they must diminish American power to raise themselves.

“We need to recognize that," she said. "And we need to make sure that we are protecting ourselves and our allies and that we are recognizing the nature of the threat they pose so that we can effectively continue to defend freedom around the world and here in the United States.”

On the state of the economy, Cheney said the rise of inflation, which the Biden administration dismisses as temporary, is real and affects the price of gasoline, food, lumber, and just about every essential good needed for small- and medium-sized businesses to succeed.

“Those are the consequences of Biden’s policies,” she said, referencing the decision to shut down the Keystone Pipeline and to pause energy extraction on federal land and the money the White House keeps handing out to people.

“One of the very first phone calls that I had with members of the Biden White House staff was about this concern about inflation," she said. "When they first began putting together their stimulus package plan, I asked them how they can be so sure that injecting this much cash into the economy won't cause inflation.”

Another big concern, she said, is what is happening at our southern border: “The fact that we've got massive inflows across our southern border and the administration is taking no action to stop it. You've got complete inconsistency in terms of how the administration is dealing with COVID, where you've got people coming into the country who most certainly have it and people who are being taken to other towns and cities around the country.”

It is an issue of national security that she says deeply concerns her.

“It is a perfect example of where the Biden administration came in, and they reversed policies of the Trump administration that were working," she said. "When they reversed the remain-in-Mexico policy, when they went back to 'catch and release,' when they took all these steps that basically are encouraging people to come."

Cheney said that while legal immigration is important for the country and economy, it is not what the Biden administration does.

“They've ceded control of our borders to Mexican cartels," she said. "And human trafficking is going on, the drug trafficking is going on. Tens of thousands of people coming across that we don't know who they are, and they're not being stopped.”

“It is a devastating situation at the border and something that fundamentally is the responsibility of the president of the United States," she continued. "You can't carry out your obligations as president if you won't secure the border.”

Meanwhile, she said she and fellow conservatives are working hard to fight against this massive expansion in government spending and the massive expansion of the government's role.

“If you look at their infrastructure bill, for example," she said, "the Green New Deal provisions in it, many of the other provisions in it, really take steps towards fundamentally restructuring key aspects of our economy in ways that are bad policies.”

Cheney said those big-government policies will certainly be a big issue in 2024.

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Tags: Liz Cheney, Midterm Elections, Trump popularity

Original Author: Salena Zito

Original Location: Liz Cheney's conservative street cred is obvious on broad range of issues

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