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Liz Cheney: Another tea party run at a Republican senator?

Liz Cheney, daughter of the former vice president, is challenging Republican Senator Mike Enzi in Wyoming. To many in the party’s tea party wing, the Senate needs more rhetorical bomb-throwers like Ted Cruz.

By Staff writer / July 20, 2013

Liz Cheney, daughter of former Vice President Dick Cheney, talks to the press on Wednesday, July 17, 2013, at the Parkway Plaza in Casper, Wyo. Cheney announced her intention to run against U.S. Sen. Mike Enzi the previous day.

Dan Cepeda/Casper Star-Tribune/AP

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Liz Cheney’s ambush of US Sen. Mike Enzi (R) of Wyoming has its unique elements, starting with her ex-VP father Dick Cheney – her “best weapon,” according to Politico.com.

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But Ms. Cheney’s challenging a long-time and very conservative Republican incumbent is part of a recent pattern within the GOP. Just ask ousted senators Bob Bennett of Utah and Dick Lugar of Indiana. To many in the party’s tea party-tinged wing, the US Senate needs more rhetorical bomb-throwers like freshman Sen. Ted Cruz from Texas.

“There are no indispensable men,” writes conservative blogger Eric Erickson, editor-in-chief of RedState.com.

“Mike Enzi is a fine Republican, but he is not putting points on the board for conservatives. We need more like Ted Cruz and less like … well … Mike Enzi,” writes Erickson. “We need less rudderless Republicans who shuffle around at the direction of their leadership and lobbyist friends.”

Yet at this point, the path to victory in a party primary fight with Sen. Enzi appears steep and rocky for Cheney.

Quickly lining up behind Enzi were Wyoming’s other senator, John Barrasso, and the state's lone US Representative, Cynthia Lummis, as well as the National Republican Senatorial Committee led by Sen. Jerry Moran, (R) of Kansas.

Speaking on Bloomberg Television Friday night, Sen. John McCain endorsed Enzi as well.

“I’ll tell you, he’s one of these solid guys,” Mr. McCain said. “I know nothing that Mike Enzi would do that didn’t deserve re-election.”

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