Liz Cheney is in Laramie this weekend to see her middle daughter, Grace , compete as a barrel racer in the high school rodeo. But in addition to that, Liz Cheney is meeting with members of the media and folks involved with the local GOP as she is looking to start rallying supporters for her run to represent Wyoming in Washington, D.C.
Rep. Cynthia Lummis, R-Wyoming, announced she won’t run this year, so Liz Cheney plans to seek the sole open congressional seat.
As the nation faces a fiercely partisan election season, Liz Cheney said she has the courage to express her conservative convictions in Washington, D.C. Wyoming, she said, is being hurt more than other states by President Barack Obama’s policies. To move the state in a positive direction, Liz Cheney said she would do her part to start rolling back the federal government.
“I think Wyoming can be, should be and is a model for the whole country in terms of what it means to live in freedom and how fundamental those values are to who we are,” Liz Cheney said. “Beginning to address some of these issues is going to take a lot of hard work and I’ll be able to hit the ground running.”
Liz Cheney, 49, is the eldest daughter of former U.S. Vice President and University of Wyoming graduate Dick Cheney . Her mother, Lynne Cheney, is a native of Casper and a former instructor at UW. Born in Wisconsin, Liz Cheney spent some of her formative years between Casper there and Washington, D.C., while her father was a congressman.
In 2013, Liz Cheney announced she planned to challenge Sen. Mike Enzi for the Republican nomination. She dropped out of the race in early 2014, citing health concerns in the family. Some in the media, as well as Wyoming’s congressional representatives, criticized LizCheney’s decision to run to office in Wyoming. Because she moved to Jackson Hole from Virginia in 2012, many thought it a political move.
Liz Cheney said Wyoming, as well as Laramie and UW, was fundamentally important in shaping who her parents became.
“So much of who they are was formed both in Casper and in Laramie,” she said.
As a member of the International Advisory Board at UW, Liz Cheney said she is often a visitor to the Gem City.
“Now with the Cheney Center on campus, being able to help provide scholarships for Wyoming kids to travel and study overseas is something I’ve been very honored to be a part of,” she said. “(Laramie) is a very special place.”
In terms of policy, Liz Cheney said she thinks there are two “fundamental sources of threat to freedom,” namely the encroachment of the federal government and a “very immediate, clear and present threat from radical Islamic extremism” from overseas.
Many of the economic challenges Wyoming currently faces are the fault of Washington, D.C., Liz Cheney said. Federal overreach in areas such as the Clean Power Act, the Affordable Care Act, the Dodd–Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act are holding the private sector back, inhibiting growth, she said.
“I’m looking for ways to back Washington off and let the private sector flourish,” she said. “Wyoming as a state is based on those concepts and we can be leader for the whole nation if we can get the representation we need.”
Partly in response to layoffs of coal workers in Gillette and a gaffe by Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton regarding putting coal miners out of work if elected, Liz Cheney said she released a list of priorities focused on the coal industry. In addition to repealing the Clean Power Plan and Regional Haze Rules, Liz Cheney said her plans call for significant reform and the eventual dismantling of the Environmental Protection Agency.
“We can contribute to energy independence for the whole country and we ought to be able to tap into those resources,” Liz Cheney said. “We all understand the boom and bust cycle in the state, and now you’ve got a federal government that is making it much worse.”