Consultant Liz Cheney has drawn many of the consideration within the race for Wyoming’s lone congressional seat because of her vocal denunciations of former President Donald J. Trump and what she describes because the threats to democracy posed by his far-right followers.
However the challenger who unseated her in Tuesday’s Republican major, Harriet Hageman, has a monitor report in Wyoming of fierce advocacy on points notably related to the state’s ranchers, vitality and mining pursuits.
She spent a long time as a trial lawyer preventing environmentalists in America’s least populated state and opposing federal guidelines defending land, water and endangered species. Her most far-reaching case was a profitable problem of Clinton-era federal rules to guard thousands and thousands of acres of Nationwide Forests from road-building, mining and different improvement. A federal choose positioned an injunction on the rules in 2003.
Ms. Hageman additionally represented teams that sought to take away protections for the grey wolf below the Endangered Species Act and permit the state to manage hunting. As an unsuccessful candidate for governor in 2018, she suggested transferring a million acres of federal land to the state, which opponents warned would have led to promoting off prized searching, fishing and mountain climbing areas.
“She has a protracted fame among the many conservation and sportsman teams of being an anti-federalist, notably in relation to possession of land,” stated Dan Smitherman, the Wyoming state director on the Wilderness Society. “Many of the foremost conservation teams and possibly 50 to 60 p.c of the sportsman teams assume we’ll be taking part in protection in opposition to her in relation to public land points and maybe some points like wolves and bears.”
At a luncheon final week for the Chamber of Commerce of Rock Springs, a group constructed on fossil-fuel extraction, Ms. Hageman promised to be a champion in Washington for these industries if elected.
“I believe we have to make the federal authorities largely irrelevant to our on a regular basis lives,” Ms. Hageman instructed the viewers.
And she or he warned that Democrats’ climate and tax bill could be “devastating” to Wyoming, after stating that coal was an “reasonably priced, clear, acceptable useful resource that all of us needs to be utilizing.”
A spokesman for Ms. Hageman, Tim Murtaugh, stated on Tuesday earlier than the polls closed that, if elected, “Harriet Hageman will make preventing in opposition to the executive state her signature difficulty in Congress, as a result of Wyoming is commonly focused by the federal authorities, which assaults its useful resource industries and controls an excessive amount of of its land.”
Earlier than the first on Tuesday, Ms. Hageman, 59, had a lead of practically 30 factors in latest polls, a mirrored image of the Republican loyalty to Mr. Trump in a state he received with 70 p.c of the vote in 2020.
Ms. Cheney, 56, has infuriated the previous president and far of her celebration’s base by serving as co-chairwoman of the Home committee investigating the Jan. 6 siege of the Capitol. Of the Home Republicans who voted to question Mr. Trump for inciting the mob that day, she was the final to face major voters. 4 of the 10 House Republicans who voted against the former president retired, 4 together with Ms. Cheney misplaced their primaries and two survived to make it to the overall election this fall.
“We’re fed up with the Jan. 6 committee,” Ms. Hageman stated at a rally in Casper in late Might that Mr. Trump headlined. “And we’re fed up with Liz Cheney.”
It wasn’t all the time so. Ms. Hageman is a former shut ally of Ms. Cheney’s. She launched Ms. Cheney at a state celebration conference in 2016 as a “brave constitutional conservative.” That yr, Ms. Hageman additionally known as Mr. Trump “racist and xenophobic.”
However, like many officers and aspiring candidates within the Republican Celebration, Ms. Hageman skilled a conversion wherein she got here to assist Mr. Trump enthusiastically. By 2020, when she campaigned in and received an inner celebration race to be one in every of Wyoming’s members of the Nationwide Republican Committee, Ms. Hageman brazenly supported Mr. Trump. She defined that she had been misled earlier by “lies the Democrats and Liz Cheney’s pals within the media” instructed about Mr. Trump.
As her marketing campaign gained momentum this yr, she grew bolder in embracing Mr. Trump’s false claims that he was robbed of re-election. “Completely the election was rigged,” Ms. Hageman stated lately at a discussion board in Casper. “What occurred in 2020 is a travesty.” (There isn’t a proof of widespread fraud in 2020.)
On the single debate of the marketing campaign, in June, Ms. Hageman bristled after the primary two questions zeroed in on Mr. Trump’s function within the Jan. 6 breach of the Capitol, the topic of the Home investigation whose prime-time hearings have prominently featured Ms. Cheney.
“The J-6 scenario,” as Ms. Hageman known as it, is “not what the folks in Wyoming are speaking about.” She added: “What they’re speaking about is the gasoline disaster. They’re speaking about meals costs.”
In touring hundreds of miles round Wyoming, Ms. Hageman broadened her message, looking for to make the race much less of a referendum on Mr. Trump than a selection between whether or not she or Ms. Cheney extra faithfully represented the state’s core traditions.
She launched herself as a “fourth-generation Wyomingite.” She described her upbringing on a ranch close to Fort Laramie, the place she realized the worth of “using for the model” — that’s, she defined, “loyalty to the outfit you’re working for.”
Regardless of Ms. Cheney’s personal Wyoming roots — her father, former Vice President Dick Cheney, and her mom, Lynne, have been highschool sweethearts in Casper — Ms. Hageman portrayed her rival, a three-term congresswoman, as a disloyal outsider and a captive of Washington.
“I’m going to reclaim Wyoming’s lone congressional seat from that Virginian who at present holds it,” she stated on the rally with Mr. Trump.
Ms. Hageman, the daughter of a longtime member of the State Legislature, earned her legislation diploma from the College of Wyoming. She grew to become energetic within the Laramie County G.O.P. and was a delegate on the Nationwide Republican Conference in Cleveland in 2016. There, she was a part of a last-ditch effort by supporters of Senator Ted Cruz of Texas to cease the nomination of Mr. Trump, whom she known as “the weakest” candidate Republicans might nominate.
Two years later, Ms. Hageman ran for governor of Wyoming, by no means mentioning Mr. Trump in her TV promoting. She completed third within the major.
Eleven months in the past, Mr. Trump endorsed Ms. Hageman after interviewing and vetting potential candidates at his golf membership in New Jersey. By then, she had accomplished her full reversal on Mr. Trump’s health for workplace, declaring him “the best president of my lifetime.”