The establishment media downplayed Rep. Liz Cheney’s (R-WY) re-election chances on Tuesday after months of hype against the pro-impeachment Republican who serves as vice-chairman of the partisan Jan. 6 committee.
Cheney’s chances of winning Tuesday’s primary against Trump-endorsed Harriet Hageman are slim. Cheney is losing in the polls by 30 points, 28 points and 22 points. Among likely Republican voters, Cheney is down 57 points.
The establishment media apparently read the polls and recognized that Cheney’s time as a congressman was coming to an end. Over the past few days, the media has written several articles downplaying expectations that Cheney might retain his seat:
Media attention on Cheney comes after she was removed in May 2021 from the number three position in the House Republican caucus by a vote of no confidence. Months earlier, Cheney had voted with nine other Republicans to impeach former President Donald Trump. The GOP caucus quickly replaced Cheney with Rep. Elise Stefanik (R-NY). “It makes me really sad and it makes me really angry” when she hears a “mere mention” of McCarthy and Stefanik, Cheney admitted to the of the Atlantic Leibovitch.
A month later, Cheney accepted the vice-chairmanship of the Jan. 6 committee from Rep. Nancy Pelosi (D-CA). “The announcement effectively made Ms. Cheney the second member of the committee, an unusual move for the majority party in the House, which typically awards that position to one of its own,” the official said. Time reported. “But his appointment was a break with convention from the start.”
Cheney’s alliance with the Democrats began to deteriorate his political position in his country. The Wyoming Republican Party voted in November 2021 to no longer recognize Cheney as a Republican. “Liz Cheney stopped recognizing what Wyoming people care about for a long time. When she launched her war on President Trump, she completely broke with where we are as a state,” Hageman told the Casper Star-Tribune.
As the GOP primary approached, Cheney took bolder steps to stay in the spotlight on the committee. The media applauded his efforts. “Wyoming’s Liz Cheney, the former Republican leader ousted and sidelined by her own party for outspoken condemnation of former President Donald J. Trump’s false election claims, has re-emerged as a force at the Capitol,” said the Time wrote, “this time as one of the most active and aggressive members of the special committee investigating the January 6 attack.”
Cheney’s media endorsement appeared to coincide with his declining poll in Wyoming, which Trump won in 2020 by nearly 70%. In May, a Club for Growth poll found Cheney was down 30 points. Two more July polls confirmed that Cheney was in big trouble against Hageman.
But the establishment media continued to praise Cheney throughout the summer:
The Wyoming Republican not only assumed her role as a figurehead in Congress’s scrutiny of the Jan. 6, 2021 riot, she also assumed the GOP face of the anti-Trump movement in the process — a high-stakes bet that is being made she is both an outcast within her conference and a hero to national Republicans fighting to steer the party away from the influence of former President Trump.
According to PredictIt odds, Cheney only has a 3-cent chance on the dollar of retaining his seat on Tuesday. Harriet’s odds of winning the seat are 87 cents on the dollar.
Follow Wendell Husebo on Twitter @WendellHusebo. He is the author of Politics of Slave Morality.