A professor writing a book about Republican Rep. Liz Cheney says her primary loss is a microcosm of a battle that is “already raging” beyond Wyoming and throughout the GOP.
In a interview With the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation on Saturday, Stephanie Muravchik, a professor of government at Claremont McKenna College in California, said, “Wyoming is this powerful example of the right’s new obsession with identity.”
Muravchik described the ideological changes in the Republican Party, adding that the term “conservative” no longer means something ideological.
“What that means is a person who is deeply committed to Donald Trump and his style of politics,” she said.
Cheney lost his Wyoming primary on Tuesday to Harriet Hageman, who was backed by former President Donald Trump. In her concession speech, Cheney called on Americans to join her in stopping Trump from running for office again, saying “It’s a fight for all of us together.” The MP was vocal exposing Trump’s 2020 election lies and holding him responsible for the attack on the Capitol.
When CBC host Saroja Coelho asked what Cheney’s loss meant, Muravchik said the fight Cheney was a part of was “in some ways the tip of an iceberg in a factional fight in state level”.
Pro-Trump Republicans have made inroads in a number of recent primaries, such as Tudor Dixon in Michigan and Blake Masters in Arizona.
Muravchik said the right has embraced a form of cancel culture that differs from the left, saying “any deviation from what the GOP thinks of the state will put someone at high risk of being censored. “.
The professor then pointed to Cheney as an example of this censorship. In 2021, the Wyoming GOP vote stop recognizing Cheney as a member of his party.
Muravchik and his co-author Jon A. Shields have traveled the state for their upcoming book about Liz Cheney’s Wyoming and the future of the American right.
In a New York Times editorialthe professors wrote that while some pro-Trump politicians may have gained traction in the party, “their political style may also contain the seeds of its destruction.”
“Any party that elevates symbolism above governance risks sparking mass revolt down the road,” the editorial continued.