In one of the many news reports about
He was trying to explain why the 47-year-old former
But the truth is, dynasties don't actually do so badly in Wyoming. Relatives of previous officeholders don't always win when they run, but they don't always lose either. Mead's grandfather, it turns out, served as both governor and senator (as the
This is not just a Wyoming phenomenon. Americans like dynasties. Being the wife of a president (like
Liz Cheney's real problem was probably not a popular backlash against her famous name. Of more significance, we suspect, was her belief that she could waltz into a state where she had not lived for many decades, purchase a house (which she did in 2012) and run for office against a popular incumbent on the strength of her family ties. The Cheney name may be famous in Wyoming, but it was not lost on voters that she went to high school in Virginia, college in Colorado and law school in Illinois. She lived in the
There were plenty of other missteps that could have led to her drop in the polls, including her very public spat with her lesbian sister, Mary, over the issue of same-sex marriage. There was a disagreement between the Cheneys and the popular former Sen. Simpson. There was her decision to run not for a local seat but directly for the U.S. Senate in her first bid for public office.
When she withdrew from the race Monday, Cheney cited "serious health issues" in her family.