The announcement Saturday by four-term Sen. Mike Enzi, R.-Wyo., that he would not seek re-election in 2020 focused all political eyes from Wyoming to Washington on the Cowboy State’s Republican Rep.-at-Large Liz Cheney.
Sources in the state told Newsmax they consider it almost a foregone conclusion that the two-term congresswoman and daughter of former Vice President Dick Cheney would run for the seat Enzi has held since 1976.
An attorney and mother of six, Cheney has voted a conservative line in the House and often emerged as a strong defender of President Donald Trump on TV and radio talk shows.
Because voters statewide choose Wyoming’s lone U.S. Representative just as they choose their governor or U.S. Senator, the congressional seat has long been considered a natural stepping stone to the Senate. Cheney, state and national Republicans agree, could have the nomination to succeed Enzi for the asking.
The question for Cheney, however, is whether she wants to be her state’s first-ever female U.S. Senator or the first-ever Republican woman to be speaker of the House.
Following her re-election last year, Cheney was chosen by Republican colleagues as chairman of the House Republican Conference — the No. 3 position in the House GOP hierarchy and one held by her father from 1986 to 1988.
(Two years later, Dick Cheney moved up to House Republican Whip and almost surely would have become speaker when Republicans won the House in 1994 had he not been tapped to be secretary of defense by President George H.W. Bush in 1989).
For Liz Cheney, however, the problem is moving up the GOP ladder in a House that is now in Democratic hands and may stay that way for years. As one political pundit told Newsmax, “The Senate is a better gig for her, especially since she would be in the majority.”
Wyoming has not sent a Democrat to the Senate since 1970, odds are that whomever carries the Republican banner will succeed Enzi.
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