As the polls closed in Wyoming, the focus over Rep. Liz Cheney became not whether she would win the Republican primary for Wyoming’s sole congressional seat, but by how much she would lose. And that loss was colossal. On this episode of The New Abnormal, hosts Molly Jong-Fast and Andy Levy discuss whether the left loves Cheney and why she has no chance at becoming president.
“I mean, look, she lost her job. She did it to take down Trump. I feel a little bit like her father created this world in which Trump could win a general [election],” Jong-Fast says. “Now she says it’s gone too far. I wish more Republicans had done it, but I’ll never vote for her.”
Levy agrees, adding that the left is not in love with Cheney and “anyone who says that is being absurd.” Also absurd, he says, is the notion that she will run for president.
While Cheney said this week it’s “something that I am thinking about,” a potential presidential run “is the most insane thing I’ve ever heard, because she has literally no path to the presidency,” Levy says.
“You can admire someone for doing something right and think that they’re completely wrong and bad all of the other times. She got one thing right and it happens to be a big thing.
“She’s not a civility icon. She’s a person who is wrong on 99.9 percent of the issues facing the country and the world. It just so happens that the 0.1 percent that she’s right about turned out to be a very important thing. And it’s bad that she lost for that one reason.”
Then, Jeet Heer, a national affairs correspondent for The Nation magazine and host of the Time of Monsters podcast, joins the discussion to explain why he thinks we need more Republicans like Cheney.
“We actually want a Republican Party that plays within the rules of democracy. And I think the big takeaway is that we’re actually going to have fewer Liz Cheneys in the future.
“It’s also the case that the people who go against Trump, they either lose or they take early retirement. And you do the math. Where does that lead?
“I do think it’s a personally courageous decision and she knew she was putting her political future totally at risk. But I think that the main thing to recognize is that the principles Cheney stands for don’t really have much of a future in the Republican Party.”
Also, Cristina Tzintzun Ramirez, executive director of NextGen America, the country’s largest organization mobilizing young voters, discusses how she’s inspiring the next generation to get involved.
“Last election, we helped get out 1 in 9 young people that turned out to the polls, and we try and organize and mobilize young progressives to turn out, to transform American politics on the issues that matter to young people.
“For us, it’s not just about a party or a single politician. It’s really getting candidates to respond to the needs of young people. And most young people are overwhelmingly progressive.
“There are more young people that are progressives online that have huge megaphones and that look at Gen Z for change. There are ways we can do it. We just have to be smarter, more well-organized, and also think long-term about building up voices.
“This is the other thing that we have to do, we have to invest in building up young, diverse, progressive voices. And some people need to understand that that’s really critical, to invest in versus trying to control the message that young people receive.”