Five years is a long time in politics. And if you’re reading this, there’s an excellent chance you’ve followed the same path as I have.
Like many Wyoming voters, in 2016 I was skeptical about Donald Trump, a New York businessman and TV personality. I worried that he didn’t understand Wyoming, our issues, challenges or industries.
Also in 2016, like many Wyoming voters, I supported Liz Cheney for our only seat in the House of Representatives. She promised to pursue our conservative values while fighting the Democrat establishment in Washington, D.C.
I was wrong on both counts, but I wasn’t alone. Most Wyomingites shared my views in 2016 and most of them agree with me now. In fact, I followed the same progression as many of my fellow Wyomingites, starting five years ago and leading up to today.
In 2020, Wyoming voted for President Trump and Liz Cheney by similarly large margins, about 70 percent. We elected them to serve as a team to look out for and represent OUR interests. Cheney turned on Trump, but Wyoming and I have not.
I was a Ted Cruz delegate to the 2016 Republican National Convention as were most of my fellow Wyoming delegates. Senator Cruz was a Texan who understood western issues, a strong constitutionalist, and a committed conservative. But when Trump became our nominee, we rallied behind him to defeat Hillary Clinton.
The night of Nov. 8, 2016, was beyond exciting; the corrupt Clinton Machine had been defeated. Over the next four years, President Trump proved himself to be a truly great president, and I wholeheartedly support his America First Agenda.
He proved that he did understand Wyoming: our desire to be left alone by Washington, our demand for regulatory reform, our need to control our own property rights and destiny and the importance of the responsible use of our abundant natural resources to attain energy independence.
Today I am honored to have President Trump’s endorsement of my campaign for Congress. We remain in regular contact with him and his team, receiving words of encouragement and expressions of confidence in our victory next year.
In contrast, my dissatisfaction with Liz Cheney began before the 2020 election, when she showed that her first instinct was to attack President Trump without knowing the facts. The New York Times ran a story alleging that Russia was paying bounties to militants to attack American troops in Afghanistan.
Liz Cheney then did exactly what the press and the Democrats wanted her to do: she attacked President Trump and fed the false narrative. We now know that the Times story was baseless, but it exposed something disturbing about Liz and foreshadowed what we have seen since the 2020 election.
Anyone with a lick of sense knows how corrupt the press has been in covering President Trump, with many false stories planted to prevent him from succeeding. The question is: Why would Wyoming’s lone Representative allow herself to be used by the media and Democrats to further a false narrative?
Further, as a Constitutional attorney, I cannot fathom how Cheney could side with Nancy Pelosi and the Democrats in an impeachment proceeding that denied the President of the United States the due process to which he was entitled. Her vote for impeachment betrayed Wyoming, the Republican Party and me.
At a time when we needed all hands on deck, Liz Cheney jumped ship, dogpaddled to the other side and started shooting back at us. When it counted, we couldn’t count on her. Her ongoing attacks against President Trump are, in reality, attacks against the vast majority of Wyomingites and she knows it.
I regret that I supported Liz Cheney when she ran first for Senate and next ran for Congress to represent the great State of Wyoming. She has pursued an agenda that neither I nor the majority of Wyoming supports.
The point of having an election every two years is so that we can hold our elected officials accountable and to correct course as necessary. We have the right to do that with Liz Cheney, as many of us once supported her but no longer do. She doesn’t represent Wyoming and she doesn’t represent us.
Think of it this way: Liz Cheney was last elected with nearly three-quarters of the votes cast by our 280,000 registered voters in Wyoming. According to Leslie Stahl of CBS News, her approval rating is now at 30%. She has lost the support of over 100,000 voters in Wyoming, including me. Ask yourself if you fall in that camp as well.
The facts are simple: Wyoming went one way and Liz Cheney went another. She should be held accountable, and we are entitled to vote her out of office.
(Harriet Hageman is a Wyoming native, an attorney, a former Republican National Committeewoman from Wyoming, and a candidate for the U.S. House of Representatives in Wyoming.)