Sunday, July 24, 2022


Under the headline "Liz Cheney Braces for Primary Loss as Focus Shifts to 2024," AP tells us that Cheney's near-inevitable primary loss this year will actually advance her political career:
Cheney’s unrelenting criticism of Trump from a Capitol Hill committee room represents the centerpiece of an unconventional campaign strategy that may well lead to her political demise, at least in the short term. Many Cheney allies are prepared for — if not resigned to — a loss in Wyoming’s Aug. 16 Republican primary against Trump-backed challenger Harriet Hageman.

But as primary day approaches, there is also a pervasive belief among Cheney’s team that her unorthodox strategy in 2022 may put her in a stronger position for the 2024 presidential contest. Cheney’s fierce anti-Trump message as vice chairman of the congressional committee investigating the insurrection has strengthened her national brand while expanding a national network of donors and Trump critics in both parties who could boost a prospective White House run.
The AP story adds:
Cheney has yet to finalize any decisions about 2024, but she has not ruled out a presidential run as a Republican or an independent.
I've added emphasis here because a Cheney primary loss ought to make clear to her what should have been obvious months ago: that she has no home in the GOP. But as I keep telling you, if it appears that we're headed for a Joe Biden-Donald Trump rerun, there'll be a clamor in the punditocracy for a third-party challenger -- and both the mainstream media and the donor class will want that challenger to be corporatist and economically right-leaning, though with credibility among moderate Democratic voters. Cheney, despite her dogmatically conservative voting record apart from matters dealing with Trump and democracy, fits the bill perfectly. Which is why I tweeted this yesterday:

And what do you know? Here's Chuck Todd today talking about Cheney and clearly seeing starbursts:

Luria is noncommittal. I wish she'd said she intends to back Joe Biden in 2024, or even that she intends to back her party's nominee. That's what a Democrat should do. But Luria is in a reelection race rated as a toss-up, in an R+2 district, according to the Cook Political Report. And she's Cheney's friend, as well as a colleague on the January 6 committee. And it's a Democratic instinct to lavish praise on Republicans at those moments when they're not being entirely awful. So Luria expressed the hope that Cheney would be a politcal force in the future.

I can easily imagine a media groundswell for a Cheney third-party run to save America from Trump and Biden. I can imagine big-money donors backing her. As I say in the tweet above, I can imagine polls in which she runs first or second. Cheney voted with Trump more often than Matt Gaetz did, but she'd get a great deal of left-centrist support.

However, another right-wing ideologue is also trying to save us from Trump:

The editorials seem as if they were generated in the same boiler room. (Journal: "Character is revealed in a crisis, and Mr. Pence passed his Jan. 6 trial. Mr. Trump utterly failed his." Post: "as a matter of principle, as a matter of character, Trump has proven himself unworthy to be this country’s chief executive again.") But Michael Wolff and others have been telling us for years that Rupert Murdoch despises Trump and thinks he's an idiot. Yet Fox News, which is both a cash cow for Murdoch and his principal propaganda organ, still can't really quit Trump. (There was chief propagandist Tucker Carlson decrying the conviction of Steve Bannon and calling the January 6 hearings "a show trial" on Friday night.)

But a three-minute montage of Arizona voters rooting for Ron DeSantis to be the 2024 GOP presidential nominee was recently posted on the Fox News website. This doesn't appear to have been aired on the Fox News Channel, however, and Murdoch and his son Lachlan still haven't allowed -- or ordered -- any of their TV stars to ask Trump to step aside. We'll see if there's more where this came from.

If Rupert Murdoch gets his wish and Trump doesn't run, that means there'll be less of a clamor in the mainstream media for a third-party candidate. In other words, DeSantis might save us from Cheney. Of the two very bad deals, this seems like the worse one. A Biden comeback, or an alternate Democratic nominee who can win, is what we really need.

No comments: