Liz Cheney, daughter of former Vice President Dick Cheney, won Wyoming’s lone U.S. House seat Tuesday.
The 50-year-old Republican will occupy the seat her father held from 1979 to 1989. In electing her, Wyoming continued a recent tradition of selecting a woman for the seat — following Barbara Cubin, who was the representative from 1995 to 2008, and current U.S. Rep. Cynthia Lummis, who has served from 2008 and has decided to return to Wyoming at the end of this term.
Cheney stood on a stage with her husband, attorney Phil Perry, and children at a Casper bar and restaurant where local Republicans were holding an election night party. Standing amid “Make America Great Again” signs and balloons that said “Cheney for Wyoming,” she thanked her supporters and said she was humbled and thrilled to go to Washington.
By press time Tuesday night, the U.S. House looked like it was going to remain Republican, as was the Senate. Trump had won the White House. That scenario will help Cheney and her colleagues accomplish their goals in Washington, she told the Star-Tribune.
“Being in that situation will mean that we’re able to move very quickly to do a number of these things like being able to reduce the size of these federal agencies, begin to return authority back to our states, back to the local level,” she said. “Repeal the Clean Power Plan, repeal Obamacare, be in a position where we’ll be able to get the pro-growth policies with respect to the energy industry and taxes. That’s the kind of difference it’ll make.”
Cheney said that there is a two-week orientation for new members of the U.S. House that begins Monday. After that, House leadership will begin assigning members committees, she said. The new session of Congress begins in January.
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Cheney’s Democratic opponent, Ryan Greene, 34, of Rock Springs, billed himself as a Wyoming Democrat who diverges from his national party’s energy agenda. He said his career helping run his family’s energy service company sent him regularly into oil fields and coal mines.
Throughout the campaign, Cheney was dogged by accusations that she moved to Wyoming in 2012 only to win federal office. She calls Wilson home. In 2013, she challenged U.S. Sen. Mike Enzi, and faced a barrage of criticism by the state’s Republican establishment. She dropped out of the race, saying she had to tend to a family health issue.
Cheney was born in Wisconsin and lived much of her life in the Washington area, during her father’s career as chief of staff to President Gerald Ford and later as a congressman. She lived in Casper as a child, attending fifth and sixth grades at Park Elementary and seventh grade at Dean Morgan Junior High.
Cheney was principal deputy assistant secretary of state for Near Eastern affairs when her father was vice president. Under President George H.W. Bush, she also worked in the State Department. She’s been employed by the Agency for International Development and the International Finance Corp., which invests in developing countries, wrote books with her dad and was a Fox News contributor.
Cheney broke fundraising records for the U.S. House seat in Wyoming, raising nearly $2 million. Much of that money came from high-ranking Republicans, including George and Barbara Bush. Cheney and her father campaigned at exclusive events outside of Wyoming. Her campaign was always quick to note that she raised more money in Wyoming than any of her competition in the primary or general elections.