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Running for Presidency after Republican Primary Defeat: Liz Cheney

For most, the last moment they’d announce running for presidency is hours after they’ve experienced a defeat in their home state. On NBC’s “Today” show, Rep. Liz Cheney (R-Wyo. ), who had just suffered a 37-point loss in her GOP primary on Tuesday, floated the idea of running for president in 2024.

Wyoming voters retaliated against Cheney for supporting Trump’s impeachment and for concentrating on her position on the January 6 House select committee by electing the Trump-backed opponent Harriet Hageman, who defeated Cheney by almost 40 points. The panel, of which Cheney is vice-chair and one of just two Republicans, is looking into Trump’s participation in instigating his followers’ uprising at the US Capitol on January 6, 2021, in a final effort to keep his job after losing to Joe Biden.

“I’m not going to make any announcements here this morning, but it is something that I’m thinking about and I’ll make a decision in the coming months,” Cheney told Savannah Guthrie during a Wednesday interview on “TODAY.” She continued: “I will be doing whatever it takes to keep Donald Trump out of the Oval Office.” Aides revealed the former third-ranking House member intended to start her own political action committee after Hageman’s victory by almost 60,000 votes was officially declared.

On the surface, it seems absurd that Cheney would have any chance of winning the national Republican primary after suffering such a setback in her home state. Cheney is clever enough to realize this. The 2024 campaign is quickly approaching, even in the best of conditions for Cheney. The initial campaigns will probably start soon, as Cheney pointed out. Despite Trump’s numerous legal issues and indications that GOP voters may choose another candidate as their next nominee, there are also no signs of a significant anti-Trump shift within the party. It’s also possible that Cheney is only using this proposition for political relevancy, as many politicians do.

There is also the question of what Cheney knows about potential future events. The vice chair of the Jan. 6 committee is aware of a wide range of prospective revelations that might have a substantial impact on Trump’s electoral future. She should have pushed for getting that information out when it could still have helped her win the primary, but both the evidence collecting and the Trump-related law enforcement investigations are still underway.

Of course, the disadvantage is that, if Cheney’s political career still has any life in it, it may be the final nail in the coffin. The wisest course of action is typically to wait for the kinds of developments that would improve one’s chances of regaining prominence if there is any chance of actually playing a part in the Republican Party’s future beyond 2024.


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