Liz Cheney, 43 year-old daughter of the former vice president, is profiled
in The New York Times as a rising star of the GOP, thus officially
announcing her arrival as political figure. She is, in the words of one source, "a red state rock
star." Liz Cheney has, like her father,
appeared regularly on talk shows as a conservative panelist since
President Obama's election. But this week she begins to assume a
somewhat more thankless role as a villain for liberals. Their attacks on her advocacy of waterboarding and her defense of the Bush administration seem to be
cementing her respect among conservatives.
- Pushed by Family and Party, Torture's Newest Advocate Andrew Sullivan suggests
that family bonds compel Liz Cheney to accept the
efficacy of her father's torture policies as "axiomatic." This makes her the best
torture advocate the GOP could ever have, he argues. "It is only by embracing
positive pride in torture that she can keep the nightmare of reality at
bay," he wrote. "Family members are always, and understandably, the
last defenders of
the criminal. The Cheneys' natural inability to see Cheney in any
reality-based perspective renders them psychologically able, even
eager, to defend evil as a force for good in ways more forthright than
others." Sullivan wrote of Liz Cheney's GOP backers, "They too cannot
hold the concept of their own moral fallibility in their fearful,
- What Liz Cheney Means for GOP Adam Serwer frames
Liz Cheney's rise as emblematic of a troubled conservatism. "For the
GOP, torture is no longer a 'necessary evil.' It is a rally
cry, a 'values' issue like same-sex marriage or abortion. They don't
'grudgingly' support torture, they applaud it. They celebrate it. Liz Cheney's
unequivocal support for torture methods gleaned from communist China
has people begging her to run for office," he wrote. "But because
torture is now a 'values' issue for the right, it is, like
abstinence-only sex education, unmoored from the necessities of proving
its usefulness in the real world, which is why someone like Liz Cheney
is finding herself where she is. Unfortunately, the consequences of one
of the two major parties in America embracing torture will affect us
all in the long run."
- Cheney Popular Because She's Right Jennifer Rubin scoffs at the coming avalanche of anti-Cheney backlash. "The Times and its devoted followers no doubt are convinced that 'Cheney'
is a toxic name," she wrote. "But since both Cheneys had it right on Guantanamo and
enhanced interrogation techniques, to name just two issues, it may be
that the voters see things quite differently." John Hinderaker half-jokingly described the story as "Cheney for President, Part II." Hinderaker added, "Let's
hope the Cheneys are thorns in the liberals' sides for many years to
- Waterboarding Monster Wonkette's Juli Weiner caricatures how many liberals perceive the Cheneys: a family of monsters.
"According to several popular children’s ghost stories books, centuries
ago Dick Cheney created another in the image of himself," she wrote. "According to legend, when little boys and girls don’t
listen to their parents, the Liz Monster
will emerge from the bowels of hell to waterboard them to death, or
until they produce actionable intelligence. WELL: Everyone must have
been on their absolute worst behavior lately, as the Liz Monster has materialized to not-torture us all!"
Want to add to this story? Let us know in comments
or send an email to the author at
mfisher at theatlantic dot com.
You can share ideas for stories on the Open Wire.