As we have watched the gossipy headlines roll past in recent days, I have found myself contemplating this question: Is it possible for anyone whose last name is “Cheney” to take a public stand that is not purely based on political considerations?
I mean, I don’t know how many country clubs there are in Wyoming, but I have always considered former Vice President Dick Cheney to be the ultimate icon of the Grand Old Party’s establishment in this era. From my perspective as a pro-life Democrat, that statement is not a compliment (dig into this 2000 piece if you want more info).
So, from the view of the family patriarch, who is the real Republican these days? U.S. Senate candidate Liz Cheney or her gay younger sister, the occasionally activist Mary? And is there a religion ghost in their nasty public spat? That’s the question I keep waiting for mainstream journalists to ask. So far, unless I have missed something, no one has worked that thread.
Dig into the following New York Times piece, for example, and then ask yourself this question: What does Liz Cheney believe and when did she start believing it? Here’s a key chunk of the media-storm drama:
The situation has deteriorated so much that the two sisters have not spoken since the summer, and the quarrel threatens to get in the way of something former Vice President Dick Cheney desperately wants — a United States Senate seat for Liz.
Things erupted … when Mary Cheney, a lesbian, and her wife were at home watching “Fox News Sunday” — their usual weekend ritual. Liz Cheney appeared on the show and said that she opposed same-sex marriage, describing it as “just an area where we disagree,” referring to her sister. Taken aback and hurt, Mary Cheney took to her Facebook page to blast back: “Liz — this isn’t just an issue on which we disagree you’re just wrong — and on the wrong side of history.”
The story does a solid job of tracking Dick Cheney through his evolution on this issue, which has certainly shown political creativity and very little doctrinal muscle. In 2011, for example, in 2011 he told Barbara Walters, “I certainly don’t have any
problem with” same-sex marriage.
Liz Cheney, however, still needs the Republican base. Thus, she has played the faith card.