Huffpost Politics
The Blog

Featuring fresh takes and real-time analysis from HuffPost's signature lineup of contributors

Michelangelo Signorile Headshot

Liz and Mary Cheney: Real Feud or Cheney Family Machinations?

Posted: Updated:

When Mary Cheney first spoke out back in September against her older sister's position opposed to marriage equality, I must admit I suspected this spat might possibly be contrived. Liz Cheney, in yet another arrogant action by a Cheney family member, decided to move to Wyoming and try to topple sitting GOP Sen. Mike Enzi, who's running for reelection next year. Coming from the Washington, D.C., suburbs, Liz needed to establish herself as a moral crusader in deep red Wyoming. What better way than to have a public feud over "family values" with her little sister who is married to a woman and raising two children? And Mary has always thought nothing of stabbing fellow LGBT people in the back, helping to elect GOP candidates with anti-gay positions. Could any of us put such deception past any Cheney?

Dick and Lynn Cheney have been gunning for anyone who gets in Liz's way. Lynn took down good old family friend, former Wyoming Sen. Alan Simpson, reportedly telling him to "shut up" after he publicly supported Enzi, and then, according to Simpson, lying about it. If indeed it's not all staged then we're to believe that the Cheneys are not only attacking loyal friends; they're throwing one daughter under the bus to help another.

Not a pretty picture either way!

And now it seems to have become just a bit too raw to be orchestrated, with Mary's wife Heather Poe getting involved too. When Liz, on Fox News over the weekend, claimed once again that she does "believe in the traditional definition of marriage," both Poe and Mary lashed out on their Facebook pages separately. Wrote Poe:

Liz has been a guest in our home, has spent time and shared holidays with our children, and when Mary and I got married in 2012 -- she didn't hesitate to tell us how happy she was for us. To have her now say she doesn't support our right to marry is offensive to say the least.

It's one thing to have a disagreement on marriage equality, but it's hard to see how it helps Liz for Poe to describe her as a blatant hypocrite and a liar. A seemingly angry Mary, dropping the "I love my sister but" preface of before, shared her wife's Facebook update and added that Liz is, "just wrong -- and on the wrong side of history."

But it's pretty damned rich for Mary Cheney to be furious at her sister for supporting an anti-equality agenda when Mary worked her ass off to reelect George W. Bush, who ran on passing a federal marriage amendment and helped fuel bans on gay marriage that passed in state after state. Mary has since given thousands of dollars to anti-equality candidates across the country, including to Mitt Romney's presidential campaign in 2012, all while living in Virginia with her then-partner and raising a family.

Eventually, Mary Cheney reaped the benefits won by hard-working gay activists whom she helped beat down for years, legally marrying in June of 2012 in Washington, D.C., which passed marriage equality in 2009. Selfish and bloodthirsty like the rest of the family, Mary had no problem enjoying LGBT rights others fought for in her own backyard while she donated money to strip the rights of her gay and lesbian brothers and sisters elsewhere.

So, spare us if we see the attack on Mary by her actual sister as a bit of karma. Whether it's all real or not, Liz looks supremely craven and just plain vile: a politician who will do anything to get elected, including either creating an elaborate false family feud or attacking her own sister's wife and children though she'd previously supported them. It's unclear how any of this goes down in Wyoming, where Liz is 52 points behind Enzi in a poll commissioned by a super PAC running ads against her. But the August 2014 primary is nine months away. That leaves a lot of time for many more Cheney family machinations to come.

Register To Vote