It’s a sign of the times that Liz Cheney had to explain herself:
Naturally, her gesture of courtesy did not go down well in some quarters.
Some Republicans, including Trump’s son Donald Trump Jr., on Thursday criticized Cheney for fist bumping Biden.
“ ‘Republican’ warmonger Liz Cheney gives Sleepy Joe a fist bump after he delivered a radical socialist vision for the future of America. So glad she’s in the GOP leadership, I guess they wanted to be more inclusive and put Democrats in there too?!?” Trump Jr. tweeted. thehill.com/…
Chris Cilliza (yeah, I know, but still) was warning that her courtesy would backfire: The Liz Cheney fist bump that will launch a thousand negative ads
[I]n raw political terms, Cheney – unwittingly – handed the forces aligned to oust her for refusing to march in step with Trump a gift on Wednesday night. While it should not be a bad thing for a GOP leader and a Democratic president to exchange a word and a fist bump, Trump’s cult of personality masquerading as a political party will use that moment to illustrate everything they think is wrong with Cheney.
The former guy was out swinging at her even before the fist bump:
“Liz Cheney is polling sooo low in Wyoming, and has sooo little support, even from the Wyoming Republican Party, that she is looking for a way out of her Congressional race,” said Trump in a statement released Tuesday. “Based on all polling, there is no way she can win.” (Sidebar: Yes, he really wrote “sooo,” not once but twice.)
One can only imagine (though I’d really rather not) what he’ll have to say now.
And from a Wyoming paper, the Cowboy State Daily:
[T]his friendly gesture was seen as a slight against the Republican Party, as Sen. Anthony Bouchard, R-Cheyenne, and Rep. Chuck Gray, R-Casper, noted on their respective social media accounts.
“The lady in blue, @RepLizCheney is probably the only republican allowed in the room,” Bouchard wrote on Twitter. “She is a disgrace and fails to represent the people of Wyoming. #embarrassing#resign#impeachlizcheney. Let’s get her out! Help me fight!”
Bouchard wrote two posts about the fist-bump, encouraging impeachment of the representative.
(Congresspeople can’t be impeached, of course. And Republicans made up half the audience in the room.)
I disagree with Liz Cheney on every single policy stand, and should be ashamed or herself for the way she treated her sister Mary. (Does anyone know if she’s gotten better on the LGBTQ front?) But respect is due where respect is earned, and Cheney has earned my respect for standing on principle in the face of malignant hate, and especially for doing her part to bring back civility to our national discourse. (McConnell has stood by Cheney, but he gets no respect from me for that — he’s courteous only when it’s convenient for him. Else why didn’t he follow through on his condemnation of the former guy for inciting insurrection?)
I do hope she wins her primary in Wyoming.