Congressional Hopeful Liz Cheney Has History With Incumbent

PHOTO: Liz Cheney addresses the crowd before interviewing her father, former vice president, Dick Cheney at the Richard Nixon Library in Yorba Linda, California, Sept. 10, 2015.Matt Masin/The Orange County Register/AP Photo
Liz Cheney addresses the crowd before interviewing her father, former vice president, Dick Cheney at the Richard Nixon Library in Yorba Linda, California, Sept. 10, 2015.

When discussing former State Department official Liz Cheney’s bid to succeed retiring at-large Rep. Cynthia Lummis (R-WY), it’s worth noting that there’s a fair amount of bad blood between the two.

From Lummis, it’s nothing personal – just business. Back in 2013, she was upset that Cheney was trying to replace longtime Wyoming Republican Sen. Mike Enzi (Cheney's first, ill-fated Congressional bid) without so much as a heads up.

"I don't think she's going about it the right way," Lummis told reporters three years ago. She called Cheney the "shiny new pony” in Wyoming politics, referring to Cheney's ad that featured her daughter barrel racing on horseback.

"In the instance where you have the three-term sitting U.S. senator who has done nothing to merit a primary challenge and you challenge that person without the courtesy of calling them just before you make the announcement, it's just not the best way to start a campaign,” she continued.

Cheney ended her primary challenge in January 2014, citing health concerns. She was also labeled a carpetbagger by critics, having spent most of her adult life in Northern Virginia and becoming a Wyoming resident in only 2012.

So how does Lummis feel now that Cheney’s seeking to fill her shoes in Congress?

She’s sure not endorsing her (plus her daughter is chairing a different candidate’s campaign), but she had some kind words for Cheney and her parents, former Vice President Dick and Lynne.

“I think that is a lovely family,” Lummis said of the Cheneys in an interview with The Hill newspaper. Liz was an “extremely bright woman” who is “certainly qualified” to be in Congress, she added.

"Rep. Lummis welcomes all the candidates for Wyoming's lone Congressional seat in the House, looks forward to supporting the Republican nominee, and will help whomever Wyoming elects to transition in Washington next January," according to a statement released by her spokesman Joe Spiering.

Cheney campaign chairman Bill Novotny said in a press statement that "Congresswoman Lummis has been a tireless advocate for Wyoming with a track record to prove it. Liz appreciates the congresswoman's kind remarks and respects the delegation's decision to remain neutral in the race."