As GOP fortunes soar, Liz Cheney gets toxic even to the GOPe
Now that even the blue cities and states are throwing the bums out and Republicans are soaring in the polls and getting ready to take Congress, something interesting is happening: the Republican establishment is trying to get as far away from Trump-hating Rep. Liz Cheney as possible.
Not the Trump faithful, who have despised Cheney for years — the old guard Republicans who have been around forever and who are now rubbing their hands together as November beckons.
Just look at what House minority leader Kevin McCarthy, who has big ambitions of becoming the next speaker of the House, is up to:
Kevin McCarthy is throwing off tradition and supporting a primary challenger to one of his own members. But it's not exactly a surprise — the incumbent is Rep. Liz Cheney.
The GOP leader's decision to wade into the primary battle and support the Trump-endorsed Harriet Hageman marks a departure from the status quo of top party leaders protecting their incumbents. It also caps off a dramatic implosion of their relationship that strained after the Jan. 6 attack.
Wow. Endorsed Cheney's primary rival, who is very likely to win. GOPe characters don't do that under ordinary circumstances.
That's fine and dandy. But where has the Kevster been all these months?
Not too long ago, McCarthy was defending Cheney when House Republicans attempted to throw her out of the GOP conference, where she held the Number 3 position, in February 2021 after her vote to impeach President Trump:
In leadership, Cheney was responsible for the messaging of the House GOP. Her detractors argue her vote to impeach the former president indicates she's lost sight over the majority of the party, which continues to embrace Trump.
House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy told Capitol Hill reporters Wednesday night that he defended Cheney during the conference meeting.
"People can have differences of opinion that we can have a discussions about," he said. "Liz has the right to vote her conscience. At the end of the day, we'll get united."
That's gag-worthy because Republican voters were outraged by her vote. McCarthy figured at the time that they were unimportant and let Liz keep her House leadership position.
But by May 2021, internal reports bubbled up about what a nasty, unpleasant creature she was to her fellow Republicans on the inside, and another vote against her position in the House GOP leadership was set up, which succeeded in dislodging her.
As I wrote on May 3, she was basically a pig to other Republicans and fought with McCarthy:
So it's not because of the impeachment vote, it seems, but because she can't get along with other people. She's the Queen of Mean, if the multiple incidents that Axios reported have it right.
That's far from a perfect reason for getting rid of her, but it's better than nothing, and obviously, it tells us a lot about her.
Axios focuses on the Cheney backbiting with House minority leader Kevin McCarthy. McCarthy's not a perfect guy, either — he went along with the leftist narrative of Jan. 6 about President Trump supposedly inciting an attack on the Capitol — but he's better than Liz because he's backtracked as the facts came out, and at a minimum, he knows which side his political bread is buttered on.
That vote got through, and Liz was out. But it still wasn't much of a penalty for her, and Cheney continued to carry on with her sanctimony as the media fawned.
Then came February 2022, when Joe Biden's poll numbers went underwater and Republicans were starting to see favorable numbers on the generic ballot poll. McCarthy's side of the House got worked up enough to censure Cheney for her obvious insult to her own party in her participation on the Jan. 6 farce, effectively colluding with House speaker Nancy Pelosi on her "Get Trump" agenda, even as two other Republicans were shut out from the process. Party loyalty? Not for Liz, who sanctimoniously kept pontificating all about her supposed integrity.
According to Fox News (and I left the related story link in):
Cheney was removed by a voice vote and took a swing at Trump after the Capitol meeting.
"I will do everything I can to ensure that the former president never again gets anywhere near the Oval Office," Cheney said after her ouster. "We have seen the danger that he continues to provoke with his language. We have seen his lack of commitment and dedication to the Constitution, and I think it's very important that we make sure whomever we elect is somebody who will be faithful to the Constitution."
We all know what that was about.
She remained an obsessed Trump-hater, a clear coeval with the likes of Eric Swalwell and Adam Schiff, her fellow Jan. 6 committee members, as well as a fraud, a hypocrite, and a pig (with an unfortunate resemblance to Miss Piggy).
Now we have McCarthy apparently cutting ties altogether, endorsing Cheney's primary challenger, meekly following President Trump because he knows which way the power in his party is coming from.
Obviously, this is the most extreme step yet to get rid of Cheney, signaling that for the GOPe, it's time to cut the line and pitch her over the side. She's a millstone around the GOP's neck now, toxic, and McCarthy with his speaker ambitions doesn't want her to be seen anywhere near him.
Meanwhile, Cheney has her defenders, notably the daughter of the late Trump-hating Arizona senator, John McCain, Meghan McCain, who's become a pundit of sorts.
Out on Twitter, instead of combatively defending Cheney and all her claimed integrity or whatever, McCain instead issued this plaintive pleading:
We are either a big tent party or we aren't. It's distasteful, trashy and unbecoming of any leader to endorse a primary opponent. @Liz_Cheney should still be able to sit with you if antisemitic space laser Marjorie Taylor Green can.— Meghan McCain (@MeghanMcCain) February 18, 2022
The message this signals is stupid boomer shit
It was pathetic. And she got scored hard for it by those who know what's going on:
Liz Cheney doesn't play by these rules.https://t.co/TYt46xPNnk— Brad Polumbo 🇺🇸⚽️ 🏳️🌈 (@brad_polumbo) February 18, 2022
Cheney, remember, was trying to block any Republican from running for office if he dared question the integrity of the 2020 election.
Maybe your message would land better if you wouldn’t denigrate an entire generation of folks, which by the way includes the person you’re defending!— Boldly Blue (@BoldlyBlue) February 18, 2022
I remember when your father withdrew his endorsement of Trump in 2016 and made his funeral a big FU to Trump.— Julie Kelly 🇺🇸 (@julie_kelly2) February 18, 2022
Pretty trashy. https://t.co/QyXTlXvWno
That's not strength; that's weakness. Liz Cheney is obviously toxic, and now even the GOPe wants to get rid of her. They know where the power and momentum are coming from as a big red-wave surge builds for 2022.
NEW!— Liz Harrington (@realLizUSA) February 18, 2022
President Donald J. Trump:
"Congratulations to Kevin McCarthy and Elise Stefanik on their strong and powerful endorsement of Harriet Hageman of Wyoming. Loser Liz Cheney is a RINO and warmonger who doesn’t deserve to serve in the House of Representatives. Harriet will... pic.twitter.com/eopASYa2hW
One can only hope this signals the end for the nastiest hypocrite the GOP has ever seen. Defying the voters comes with political perils. Maybe Liz can ask Joe and Kamala about it.
Image: Twitter screen shot.