By Jimmy Orr, Cowboy State Daily
Former President Donald Trump on Thursday formally endorsed Wyoming attorney and past gubernatorial candidate Harriet Hageman.
Trump said he “strongly endorsed” Hageman while calling Cheney a “warmonger,” and a “disloyal Republican.”
“Unlike RINO Liz Cheney, Harriet is all in for America First. Harriet has my Complete and Total Endorsement in replacing the Democrats number one provider of sound bites, Liz Cheney,” he said.
Congresswoman Liz Cheney quickly reacted to the endorsement by posting Trump’s statement on her Twitter account along with two words: “Bring it.”
In typical Trump fashion, a degree of drama was included in the endorsement. In this case, he let people know that Wyoming’s junior senator endorsed Hageman as well.
“Harriet is a fourth-generation daughter of Wyoming, a very successful attorney, and has the support and respect of a truly great U.S. Senator, Wyoming’s own Cynthia Lummis,” he said.
Lummis didn’t disavow Trump’s announcement telling the Washington Examiner that she’s known Hageman for decades.
“She is a fabulous choice for President Trump — and I’m just leaving it at that,” she said. “Take my statement at face value. That’s all I’m saying.”
Wyoming’s other Sen. John Barrasso has yet to weigh-in on the endorsement.
“Harriet Hageman adores the Great State of Wyoming, is strong on Crime and Borders, powerfully supports the Second Amendment, loves our Military and our Vets, and will fight for Election Integrity and Energy Independence (which Biden has already given up),” Trump said.
Earlier on Thursday, Hageman formally announced she was running for U.S. Congress.
Choosing to make the initial announcement digitally (on Facebook and on her website), Hageman said Cheney “doesn’t represent Wyoming” and that the state “deserves better.”
“I’m running for Congress because I am a Deep-Rooted Wyomingite who is sick of being misrepresented in Washington. We need a Tough Conservative to stand up against Nancy Pelosi, not help her divide Republicans,” Hageman said.
On Tuesday, she resigned as the state’s national Republican commiteewoman.
Of the other candidates who are running against Cheney, only state Sen. Anthony Bouchard offered an immediate response to Trump’s selection of Hageman.
“Harriet has never been elected,” he said. “She doesn’t have a voting record, and now the voters should trust a party operative that is a long time close friend of Cheney? Trump has once again surrounded himself with the wrong advisors and he’s endorsed the same candidate that Liz Cheney would endorse to replace her in her congressional seat.”
Later in the day, Cheyenne attorney Darin Smith announced he would drop out of the race.
Sheridan County GOP chair Bryan Miller dropped out as well. This was surprising to some observers who didn’t know he was ever in the race in the first place.
Gillette veteran Denton Knapp announced he was staying in the race while State Rep. Chuck Gray has not returned phone calls or emails regarding his status.