Aug 17, 2022 - Politics & Policy

Liz Cheney plans to go national

Mike Allen
Image of Liz Cheney speaking.
Photo: David Stubbs/Reuters

Allies of Rep. Liz Cheney (R-Wyo.) tell Axios that after last night's primary loss, they expect her to start a super PAC — which would attract lots of wealthy, anti-Trump Republican donors.

Why it matters: Forming a national group would signal a run in the '24 GOP primaries, giving a real voice to anti-Trump Republicans.

Driving the news: It sure looked like a presidential-campaign stage when Cheney — vice chair of the House Jan. 6 committee — conceded Wednesday night in Jackson, Wyo. She immediately teased a '24 presidential run.

  • "[O]ur work is far from over," she began.
  • "The great and original champion of our party, Abraham Lincoln, was defeated in elections for the Senate and the House before he won the most important election of all," she added.
  • "Lincoln ultimately prevailed, he saved our Union and he defined our obligation as Americans for all of history."
Harriet Hageman speaks in Cheyenne last night. Photo: David Williams/Bloomberg via Getty Images

Cheney lost, 66% to 29%, to Trump-endorsed Harriet Hageman, a ranching industry attorney who finished third in a 2018 bid for the GOP gubernatorial nomination.

  • "Two years ago," the third-term congresswoman said, "I won this primary with 73 percent of the vote. I could easily have done the same again. The path was clear, but it would have required that I go along with President Trump's lie about the 2020 election. ... That was a path I could not and would not take."

Cheney on Wednesday morning said on NBC's "Today" show that running in 2024 is "something I'm thinking about," and it's a decision she will make "in the coming months."

  • "We have a tremendous amount of work to do, I think it could take several election cycles," she added.
  • "Donald Trump has betrayed Republican voters. He's lied to them, those who support him have lied to them and they're using people's patriotism against them, they're preying on people's patriotism," she said.

Zoom out: Cheney is the fourth Republican to lose renomination among the 10 who voted for former President Trump's impeachment.

  • Four are retiring. Reps. Dan Newhouse (Wash.) and David Valadao (Calif.) won their primaries. Valadao faces a highly competitive general election.

Go deeper... Liz Cheney loses GOP primary to Trump-backed Harriet Hageman

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