Liz Cheney may be enjoying being treated like a heroine by the leftist corporate media that demonized her father and family for decades, but she hasn’t completely lost touch with reality.
The Never Trump turncoat not only became a key leader of House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s McCarthyite show trial of Donald Trump under the guise of investigating the Jan. 6, 2021 Capitol Riot, but has also been masquerading as that sham’s ranking member. But she’s aware that being the principal star of the Democrat’s prime time television show has made her the object of near universal hostility from Republican voters. That’s doubly true in her family’s home state of Wyoming, where her defeat in the upcoming August primary has more or less been ensured by Trump’s popularity and conservatives’ hostility to those who seem to think demonizing GOP voters is a viable political strategy.
With polls showing her as far as 30 points behind primary challenger Harriet Hageman, Cheney knows that she’s going to need something of a miracle in order to hold onto the congressional seat she first parachuted into on the basis of her famous family name in 2016. That’s why she’s done the logical thing to save her political hide and is appealing to members of the party that she effectively joined last year to carry on her vendetta against Trump. With a considerable campaign war chest (largely raised from Democrats and ancien regime Republicans), her campaign is principally concerned with an effort to convince Wyoming Democrats to change their registration and vote for her in the August primary.
In doing so, she’s essentially given up on the dubious effort to convince Republicans that her participation in the Jan. 6 Committee inquisition is a matter of saving the honor of the GOP. Few if any actual Republican voters ever bought that line. Most understand that her decisions have everything to do with the ongoing pique of the GOP establishment about losing control of a party that they once ruled, while giving little thought to the desires or interests of their voters.
Given that Wyoming Democrats are a small minority, with not a single statewide candidate getting more than 30 percent of the vote in the last three election cycles, it’s far from clear whether the strategy has any chance of success. But it’s one that others in her small camp of fellow ex-conservative Trump haters are adopting.
Utah’s Never Trump-Democrat Alliance
In Utah, Evan McMullin, who ran for president in 2016 as the supposedly true conservative alternative to Donald Trump and actually managed to get 21 percent of the vote in his home state, is seeking to unseat incumbent Republican Sen. Mike Lee. In contrast to Cheney, who, when not otherwise occupied with demonizing Trump and those who voted for him, still maintains that she supports basic conservative stands on issues like illegal immigration, McMullin has long since abandoned the pretense that he shares many of the beliefs of most GOP voters.
That made it easy for Utah Democrats to endorse his independent candidacy rather than running one of their own in an almost certainly doomed effort to unseat Lee. That sets up a race in which McMullin has a chance to beat one of the most principled Senate conservatives, with a Deseret News poll taken last month showing him trailing Lee by only 41-35 percent. With Utah Sen. Mitt Romney maintaining the sort of neutrality in the contest that illustrates his conservative apostasy more than anything else, it’s entirely possible that a Never Trump-Democrat alliance might actually succeed in the quirky Utah political environment.
Democrats Divide and Conquer
All this points to smart politics being practiced by Democrats. They understand that they can do more to advance their agenda by seeking to divide and conquer Republicans by backing Never Trumpers. It also shows that the whole Never Trump idea has been more of a political scam than anything else. After Trump took office, he began to show that the not unreasonable skepticism about his willingness to actually implement conservative policies was actually unfounded.
The notion that the people who continue to pretend that Trump and his supporters have somehow betrayed conservatives are those who stand for the true values of the Republican Party never made much sense. But after four years in which Trump kept his promises on a variety of issues — from appointing pro-life conservatives to the U.S. Supreme Court, to deregulation, prioritizing the battle against illegal immigration, and even moving the U.S. embassy to Israel from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem — it’s clear that those who fly under the Never Trump banner no longer truly support conservative ideas.
Indeed, in the wake of the court’s overturning of Roe v. Wade, it is simply impossible to claim that those seeking to tear down the GOP in order to supposedly save it are doing anything but acting as auxiliaries to the left.
Love him or hate him, Trump was, perhaps improbably to some, the most successful conservative president since the modern movement was born in the 1950s. Unlike the much more beloved President Ronald Reagan, Trump actually helped turn the liberal train around rather than merely trying to thwart its progress.
That means that in its current form, Never Trumpism is a unique variant of political opportunism geared at securing its adherents lucrative positions at legacy media companies and/or political offices where they can carry the water for Democrats, albeit under a false flag of independence.
Never Trumpism Is a Complete Betrayal of Our National Interest
At a time when the woke assault on traditional values and the Democrats’ quest for untrammeled power to remake the country in the image of their neo-Marxist goals, Never Trumpism isn’t so much a reflection of distaste with an unorthodox politician but a complete betrayal of conservatism and the national interest.
By seeking to be rewarded for her help for the Democrats from their voters, Cheney epitomizes both that betrayal as well as how profitable such a stand can potentially be. After she loses her primary, it is entirely likely that Cheney will continue to seek Democrat donations for a likely challenge to Trump — or other actual conservatives should he decide not to run for president in 2024 — while also likely becoming a talking head on CNN and MSNBC and thus keeping her career failing upward. But no one should be under the impression that that is anything more than an elaborate grift whose only end will be to satisfy her desire for attention and a financially secure platform from which to continue working against rather than for conservative policies and principles.