Rep. Liz Cheney trails Trump-backed rival in Wyoming

Politics

WASHINGTON (NewsNation) — Rep. Liz Cheney, R-Wyo., the vice chair of the committee investigating the Jan. 6 riot at the Capitol, is facing a potentially uphill reelection battle in her own state.

Cheney, the most prominent member of the committee, is on the verge of losing office as a Casper Star-Tribune report has her polling 22 points behind her opponent, Harriet Hageman.

Niall Stanage, a White House columnist at The Hill, told NewsNation he believes Cheney would make the argument the Jan. 6 investigation outweighs her political aspirations.

“I think Liz Cheney is genuinely appalled by what happened on January the sixth,” he said. “I don’t think she has suddenly transformed herself into a liberal; the congresswoman is quite ardently conservative. She just has very vehement opposition to what happened on January the sixth.”

Cheney’s immediate political fortune may provide the most direct answers to larger questions about whether the hearings into the mob attack on Jan. 6, 2021, will chip away at Trump’s continued hold of the national Republican Party. They could also offer clues about whether efforts to fully make public the former president’s responsibility in helping spark the mob attack can be a boon to front-line Democrats during November midterm elections that could otherwise be brutal for their party.

Stanage said that while Wyoming is an overwhelmingly Republican state — having not carried a Democratic presidential nominee since Lyndon Johnson in 1964 — she may be looking to poach some Democratic voters.

“If she is to win another term, she’s going to be reliant upon independent voters voting in the primary, and maybe even some Democrats changing their party registration on the day in order to back her up, because it doesn’t seem like she has backing from Republicans,” he said.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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