The Right Resistance: Unapologetic Liz Cheney’s legacy has few options for political redemption
How many times have we heard or seen the saying, “Gone, but not forgotten”?
All it takes is a drive down the road and you’ll invariably encounter a roadside memorial, or even the rear window of a car, with some sort of tribute to a departed friend or relative, typically in decorative writing and including dates – birth date and presumably, date of dear departure. One can’t help but wonder about who the person was and the circumstances of their demise, but if it makes the maker or driver of the “tribute” feel better, who’s to criticize?
A few days removed from the not-so-unpredictable death of Congresswoman Liz Cheney’s political stint as the lone representative from the sparsely populated high plains state of Wyoming, conservatives are wondering if we might soon begin seeing tributes to the dearly politically departed Republican establishmentarian on cars and signs of another variety – namely, “Liz Cheney for President” campaign paraphernalia.
Almost as though Cheney succumbed to a long and terminal illness, ruling class Liz must’ve figured her political days were numbered. She no doubt had much time to consider what she’d say when the moment arrived to gracefully (or not) bow out, yet even in defeat Cheney was defiant and unapologetic. It’s not often in American politics that incumbents get trounced in their own party primaries, but Liz’s ousting was somewhat historic in nature.
Whatever her reasons (delusions?), Cheney vowed to stay in the fight. How she lives on from here is anybody’s guess, but one way or another, unfortunately, we haven’t heard or seen the last from Dick Cheney’s little girl.
Longtime political observer Jeff Greenfield wrote at Politico the other day:
“’This primary election is over,’ she flatly said, ‘But now the real work begins.’ That work, she argued, is rooted in the fight against ‘the conspiracy and the lies’ about the 2020 elections. She pointed (if not by name) to Republican candidates for governor, secretary of state and other offices, who baselessly argue that the election was stolen, with some even having promised to decertify the last election. More pointedly, she called out Trump for spreading lies that are likely to incite violence, and for revealing the names of the FBI agents who executed the warrant to search his offices in Florida. If violence happens, she said in effect, it will be on Donald Trump’s hands.
“And, after a lengthy turn into Civil War history — perhaps to remind her audience of how high the stakes are for the republic, with a war fought by the first Republican president — she repeated what will be seen as a clear indication of future political engagement: ‘I will do whatever it takes’ to deny Trump a return to the Oval Office.
“There will be endless speculation about what that might mean. A 2024 primary run against Trump (which at first and even second blush seems like a supremely futile gesture)? An independent run? (She did manage to note that ‘Abraham Lincoln was defeated in elections for the Senate and House before he won the most important election of all.’)”
I knew Abraham Lincoln. Abraham Lincoln was a friend of mine. Congresswoman, you’re no Abraham Lincoln.
With apologies to Lloyd Bentsen – who recited a similar insulting and vastly unfair line against then vice president candidate Dan Quayle in 1988 – there has never been a bigger travesty of justice done to the memory of America’s 16th president than Liz Cheney committed by comparing herself to him the other night. Lincoln inherited a nation on the brink of civil war and had to decide early-on whether he would defend the constitutional union or let the southern states go their own separate ways.
Cheney could’ve opted for a conciliatory tone towards a contemporary former president supported by huge swaths of her own party members – but instead chose to carry a grudge and make a donkey (pardon the pun) out of herself for the millionth time. Liz likely figured that to admit she was wrong and everyone else was right would make her daddy and his good buddy George W. angry and upset with her.
Particularly hilarious was her returning to the “incite violence” line of argument, which is a slap in the face to her own people. Considering that most mass murderers, rioters and shooters are leftists, it takes a great leap of ignorance to pin violence on God-fearing, law-abiding, rights protecting conservatives. As I’ve said many times, we don’t attack the police – we ARE the police.
But these days, supporting your local police force is much removed from backing the corrupted federal law enforcement engine, the leadership of which has been taken over by politically motivated men and women less interested in pursuing legitimate federal crimes than taking off after the political opponents of Democrats. Here’s thinking there still are many, many conservatives who work for the FBI, CIA and other agencies, but the rot at the top is spreading downward.
Beyond this obvious fact, what is Liz Cheney’s next move? Her non-concession speech aside, she couldn’t care less about losing in Wyoming. The Cowboy State was just a political launching pad for her to use her family name to gain a cushy job in Congress for her to weave whatever webs her spidery mind could concoct. Liz no doubt figured she could use the ignorant rubes in flyover country as a cover for her neoconservative schemes, and they’d never hold her to account.
She was wrong. A family member in Wyoming who voted to kick Cheney to the side told me that even with 10,000 or more Democrat crossover votes the other day (one can easily switch party affiliations there), poor Liz still lost by 37 points. Cheney reasoned that she could easily have won again if she’d only toed the party line on Trump. But that would’ve required some degree of humility and common sense, which establishment Republicans can’t ever muster.
If you don’t believe it, look at Mitch McConnell. Mitch did terrific work in keeping Merrick Garland off the Supreme Court, but what else has he done to further the conservative cause?
What now? Liz will redouble her efforts to push the January 6 Committee nonsense to its furthest extreme, which they pray will result in some sort of indictment of Donald Trump. Having failed to impeach him – twice – turning the corrupted law against Trump is their only remaining recourse. Imagine the news coverage the day that the Justice Department serves the papers on Trump. Talk about inciting violence. Perhaps Liz and her ideological soulmates in the Democrat party should look in the mirror. One observation: in seeing dozens of interviews with Liz Cheney and listening to a few of her speeches as well as those of other NeverTrumpers like Bill Kristol and (insert your favorite NeverTrump honk here), I get a real sense of self-righteous egotism cloaking enormous personal insecurities.
Rather than come out front and acknowledge that a lot of mistakes were made in the 2020 election and concede that there was a strong inference of funny business in numerous locales, the so-called “conservative” Trump-opposition denies there ever was any inkling to doubt the results anywhere. Do these people believe there was fool-proof election security in every precinct in every location, and that these Democrat-run processes didn’t contribute to Joe Biden’s victories?
Why won’t they answer to the inconsistencies like those portrayed in the film “2000 Mules”? These mysteries need answers, and the media’s blanket denials of government involvement in January 6 and other instances of “domestic terrorism” take away what little credibility these institutions have left.
Liz Cheney’s “I’m right, you’re wrong” arrogance is what got her fired (by the voters) from her political fiefdom. Politicians won’t get far by insulting their own voters, a lesson the DC establishment should’ve learned a long time ago. To see Liz spouting her self-righteous venom the other evening was disgusting – and sad. This is what she – and her family – is destined to be remembered for, bitter vindictiveness towards a new direction in the Republican party.
For all of her rhetoric and rage-inspired actions against Trump, Cheney has turned herself – and again, her family – into a politician without a pollical home. Democrats would never accept her because she’s said plenty of unforgiveable things about liberals over the years. Republicans won’t welcome her back because she represents an ideology that just doesn’t fit anymore. The wars in Iraq and Afghanistan are largely viewed as failures, as was the entire presidency of George W. Bush and Dick Cheney.
Where does she go? What shall she do? Liz has plenty of work left on the January 6 thing. Embarking on wild goose chases is what Democrats do best, and they’ll keep her busy until she’s told to pack up and leave her office. Cheney will continue to get more than her share of appearances on liberal cable news and Sunday morning talk shows. And here’s thinking she’s already got a ghost writer working night and day on a tell-all book that no one will buy – or read.
A showy but fruitless presidential run might be in the works, but can Liz sustain herself for the year or so before the 2024 GOP debates begin? Will she get a high enough poll showing to even get her on stage with Trump and the other challengers? If she runs as an independent, what will her platform be, other than making sure Trump doesn’t win?
This tale doesn’t end well for Liz Cheney. Her best bet would be to lay low for a while, avoid the public spotlight, lick her wounds, acquire some humility and use the rest of her days working to repair the bridges she’s burned in the Republican Party. Turncoats and traitors aren’t typically heralded in history books; Liz Cheney’s legacy has very few options for redemption.
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