(UnitedVoice.com) – History is littered with popular politicians who lost favor with their voters. One recent example is former Rep. Eric Cantor (R-VA) who shockingly lost his seat in 2014 to Tea Party favorite David Brat. An establishment insider, Cantor was the House majority leader and a 13-year veteran of Congress. His financial war chest was deep, and it was uncommon for a powerful Congressman to lose elections. However, Cantor failed to embrace the Tea Party movement and paid the ultimate political price.
It seems history may be repeating itself. However, this time a formerly popular Republican member of Congress’s fate may be more obvious. Constituents elected Rep. Liz Cheney (R-WY) to Congress in 2016 for the first time. Perhaps, in part, because she is the daughter of former Vice President Dick Cheney, she rose quickly through the ranks and garnered the number three ranking position within the GOP in 2018 when her Congressional colleagues confirmed her position.
Cheney Falls From Grace Quickly
There is only one House seat in the low population state of Wyoming. In November 2020, Cheney easily defeated her Democratic opponent with 73% of the vote. However, since that time, she bucked the GOP by vocally opposing former President Donald Trump and the large wing of the GOP that supports him. Prior to the January 6 riots on Capitol Hill, Cheney and Trump sparred publicly on numerous occasions. In January, she voted to impeach the former president, and Cheney continually pushes back against the GOP leadership and voters that heavily support him.
As quickly as she rose, Cheney fell even faster. Those distinctions earned her a formal rebuke by the Wyoming GOP. On Wednesday, May 12, the House GOP voted to strip Cheney of her leadership position.
Support for Cheney Plummets
Politicians who choose to stand on principle and go against their voters often pay a steep political price. The once highly popular Wyoming Republican is falling fast and furiously from voters’ good graces. At the end of April, Cheney’s approval rating completely collapsed as she earned a 65% unfavorable rating. Half of GOP voters say they would vote against her no matter who challenges her in a 2022 primary.
It’s unlikely that Cheney will back down from her heated rhetoric. After losing her leadership seat, the Congresswoman vowed to serve the remainder of her term while continuing on her previous course. In politics, 18 months is an eternity. However, Trump-supporting candidates are already lining up to take her seat.
Only time will tell if Cheney will face a backlash at the polls. Regardless, the Trump wing of the party is making it clear who’s now in control of the GOP.
Don Purdum, Independent Political Analyst
Copyright 2021, UnitedVoice.com