December 11, 2023

Most people who make it their business to break down poll numbers like they’re batting averages or NFL player stats have — quite reasonably — come to the conclusion that former President Donald Trump will more than likely become the GOP nominee in 2024. As of Monday, RealClearPolitics poll averages had him leading his nearest GOP opponent by 46.3 points. But despite all the evidence, former Rep. Liz Cheney (R-Wy.) apparently thinks she could have a shot at the Oval Office in 2024.

On Sunday, Cheney was invited to appear on CNN’s State of the Union, during which Jake Tapper asked the former chair of the House Republican Conference whether she would be casting her vote for Trump or Joe Biden. Cheney promptly proceeded to adopt the cagey attitude politicians tend to assume when they want to hint at big announcements but aren’t ready to make those announcements.

“I think Donald Trump is the single most dangerous threat we face. I would imagine that there will be a number of other candidates in the race,” Cheney demurely replied, adding that she has every intention of spending “the next year between now and the election certainly helping to elect serious people, helping to elect sane people.”

Tapper isn’t the best journalist out there, but he knows a juicy story when he sees one, so he pressed Cheney: “But you’re not ruling out a presidential run?” “No, I’m not,” Cheney admitted.

As if that weren’t evidence enough, Cheney had yet another TV hit on Sunday, this time on CBS’ Face the Nation, where she was asked when she would be making the decision about whether to run. The former representative gave a non-response, babbling something about helping individuals who “believe in the Constitution” get elected.

So, Cheney is considering a presidential run in 2024.

One would assume that Cheney would choose to run as a Republican nominee — after all, she was once the third-highest-ranking Republican in the House before the former Speaker of the House, Kevin McCarthy, ousted her from that role in 2021 during a closed-door meeting that lasted all of 20 minutes (one of McCarthy’s better moments).

Cheney would face a host of problems were she to join the GOP primary race. She’s months behind the rest of the candidates and, therefore, 70,000 donors, millions of dollars, and 4 percent away from even qualifying for the third primary debate in November. She’s also not terribly popular among Republican voters.

Her own constituents in the reliably conservative and Republican-voting state of Wyoming voted her out in the primaries back in 2022 in favor of a Trump-backed candidate. Cheney tends to be extremely critical of Trump, who won nearly 70 percent of the vote in the state — a fact that suggests she’s fairly bad at staying in touch with her constituent’s political opinions.

The GOP doesn’t need (and shouldn’t want) any more candidates; as a matter of fact, it would be far better if some of the lowest-polling candidates were to leave the race, but that would require GOP politicians to try a slice of humble pie — a dish no politician likes.