Liz Cheney, daughter of Dick, has decided she is the perfect person to represent Wyoming in the U.S. Senate. But isn’t she from Virginia? Yes, that is true, but since she did live in Wyoming for a few short years as a child and spent some holidays in the Cheney vacation home, she can claim to be a Wyoming-er at heart! Oh those Cheneys, always tweaking the truth to fit their reality. According to her Wikipedia page, Liz Cheney:
attended elementary school and Junior High in Casper, Wyoming. The family split time between Casper and Washington DC in the 1970s through the ’80s following her father’s election to Congress. Cheney graduated from McLean High School in Virginia. She received her bachelor’s degree from Colorado College, where she wrote her senior thesis, “The Evolution of Presidential War Powers.” She received her Juris Doctor degree from the University of Chicago Law School.
Ok, let’s see: high school in Virginia, undergrad in Colorado, law school in Chicago…I suppose she could have run in any of those states, but Wyoming, one of the nation’s reddest states, clearly seemed the easier win, right?
Except that she’s running against Wyoming’s current senator, Mike Enzi, who has a political biography that goes back to 1975, including: four-term mayor, three-time state representative, three-time state senator and, since 1998, a three-time U.S. senator.
But given the enormous hubris of the Cheney clan, it seems fitting that Cheney, who has never held public office, eschews beginning her political climb as a lowly public servant of, say, the state legislature. She’s a Cheney, goddamn it, clearly entitled to go straight for the top! Does it matter that she has no political experience? No! Does it matter that she has never shown an interest in local Wyoming politics before? No! Until recently, she’d never attended one of those annual Lincoln Day dinners or countless rubber chicken dinners that local political parties love to throw each year.
Who has attended those dinners? Can you guess who has spent his entire career getting to know the people of Wyoming? Care to guess the name of the guy who has eaten so many chicken, beef and fish meals at so many countless Holiday Inn “ballrooms” that he can no longer pass one without his stomach involuntarily heaving? You are correct! It’s Sen. Enzi, that wildly popular local guy from Gillette.
But suddenly, there Cheney is! Rubbing up against all of those cattle ranchers, local county leaders and Republican poobahs, shaking hands and kissing babies! She’s one of the people! Swinging her carpetbag and hiding her DC mannerisms, she’s all “Howdy” and “How’s yer momma?” Ack, my stomach just heaved.
She’s gracious to donors and diners, yet when there was a recent fishing license kerfuffle, Cheney blamed a hapless clerk for screwing up her application:
Senate candidate Liz Cheney improperly received a state resident fishing license based on an application with incorrect information, according to Wyoming Game and Fish Department records.
Cheney, who last month announced she will challenge Sen. Mike Enzi in the 2014 Republican primary, received her resident license just 72 days after closing on her Wilson house in May 2012. State law requires residents live in the state 365 consecutive days before they can receive a resident hunting or fishing license, which are cheaper than out-of-state licenses.
Cheney’s application also lists her as a 10-year resident of Wyoming.
The Game and Fish records are incorrect, Cheney told the Star-Tribune.
“The clerk must have made a mistake,” she said. “I never claimed to be a 10-year resident.”
I don’t blame the clerk. I believe Cheney lied. Well, unless she rented during all that time and Cheneys don’t rent. Her audacity, her Dark Cheney ability to lie with a straight face is chilling — and all too familiar.
I wondered that maybe Cheney thought she was a better conservative for Wyoming — but Sen. Enzi, says the National Journal, is the fourth most conservative member of the Senate:
To give you some perspective, Sen. Marco Rubio of Florida, the onetime and possible future Republican Tea Party darling, came in seventh. Enzi and Cheney have very similar values: both vehemently oppose Obamacare, take their marching orders from the NRA, oppose abortion without exception and of course believe marriage is only for a man and a woman. I have to assume Cheney is running for her ego and Wyoming has nothing to do with it.
What’s worse is how Cheney is taking Enzi — an old Cheney family friend and beloved public servant — and dragging him through every mud puddle she can find. It’s a scorched earth campaign in which no one is safe. She now famously attacked her sister Mary’s gay marriage, which opened up a private family disagreement and embarrassed her parents. I admit I did feel schadenfreude about that! And the funny thing is that Wyoming’s motto is “The Equality State.”
Nor is nastiness in this case limited to Liz. Mother Lynne, clearly cut from the same “take no prisoners and never apologize” cloth as her husband and daughter, will gladly destroy lifelong friendships to help her daughter out. At a fundraising event, Lynne apparently had choice words for another longtime family friend, former Sen. Alan Simpson, after learning he was backing Enzi. According to Talking Points Memo:
In a letter to the Cody Enterprise of Wyoming, Simpson describes how Lynne Cheney repeatedly told him to “shut up” about his support for Enzi instead of Liz Cheney.
“All during those intervening years we counseled together, visited, enjoyed each other, collaborated, all hopefully for the benefit of the state and the country.” And then Lynne Cheney said, “Oh, I’ve heard enough of that and I don’t want to hear anymore. I just want to tell you something, “Shut up – just shut up – shut up.” Three times,”” Simpson writes. “I wandered off – stunned. I went back to my table, told my family (who were my guests) what had occurred. They were also shocked.”
In all of my 35-40 years of public life in Wyoming, I’ve never been called one particularly offensive name – and that is, a liar. And this is what Lynne Cheney said in her statement about this sad evening, and I quote her: “As to the story posted on Facebook I have to admit I am at a bit of a loss. That simply did not happen.” And that twisted comment is one damn bald-faced lie and I have had a belly full of it! I have never been called a liar before and it sure as hell won’t work this time. Now I know folks can go into the old pitch of “he said, she said” and so I’ll just leave it to the good people of Wyoming to know who is telling the truth here. I lay my reputation flat on the line before my fellow Wyomingites who know Ann and me, but I sure don’t have to take that guff from anyone – whenever – whoever – ever!
I have to admit, I love when the carefully constructed masks come off in politics and the real person hiding behind it comes out to play. Lynne Cheney having the balls to tell Sen. Simpson to shut up and calling him a liar is part and parcel of being a Cheney, because you’re right (and right-wing) about everything! Lying to the American people about WMDs and war: just fine! Waterboarding: just fine! Destroying the GOP in your home state: just fine! Publicly offending your sister and her wife: just fine! Ending years of friendships and public name calling: just fine!
Well, watching Liz Cheney destroy the Cheney name is just fine with me.