Wyoming Republican Rep. Liz Cheney’s fate is in the hands of voters

Rep. Liz Cheney, who serves as vice chair of the Jan. 6 House committee, takes on Donald Trump-backed Harriet Hageman in the state's primary.
5:42 | 08/16/22

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Transcript for Wyoming Republican Rep. Liz Cheney’s fate is in the hands of voters
- We know that Wyoming is front and center today as voters decide whether Republican congresswoman and vice chair of the January 6 Committee, Liz Cheney, will keep her seat. ABC's Brittany Shepard joins me live from Cheyenne, Wyoming. It's good to see you, friend. So we know that Liz Cheney is unlikely to be reelected after splitting with her party by voting to impeach former President Trump. What are voters there saying about her? - Kenneth, to say that Wyoming Republicans are eager to send Liz Cheney to the unemployment line would be a gross understatement. They're angry. They're frustrated, and not just about the turning on Trump of it all. I spoke to several voters, both today and last weekend, who say that in trying to take Trump to task, that Liz Cheney has abandoned constituents when she needed them most. Here's a little bit from Myrna Burgess. She's a Cheyenne Republican, someone who used to support Trump. Now she's not so hot on him, but she feels that she can't even count on Liz Cheney to show up to any of her events. - After she jumped in on the January 6 thing and she jumped in on the impeachment, she was nowhere to be found. She wasn't meeting with the people. She doesn't care about us. - And other voters like Myrna are frustrated with Cheney, calling her a Republican in name only for doing bipartisan votes like being one of the few Republicans who crossed the aisle and support President Joe Biden's sweeping gun legislation passed just a few weeks ago. - Yeah, that's what's interesting about this, is that Liz Cheney has been busy here in Washington, but her constituents say that she is MIA, essentially, back home. We know, Brittany, that Cheney's primary challenger, Harriet Hageman, says she's the one stumping across the state and actually meeting voters. How is Cheney responding to that, and how different are these two candidates? - Well, the Cheney campaign tells us that this is an issue of security, that as much as she'd like to be going to rope lines and big-tent events, that if she came across an audience-- there are enough people who hate her thanks to President Trump-- that they might cause her or her elderly father, former Vice President Dick Cheney, some real violence. I spoke to a campaign surrogate last weekend. His name was Landon. And Landon told me that it is a crying shame that they are unable to get in front of voters. But rubber meeting the road-- she's not out. She's not out talking to voters. She's in private meetings. She's in House parties in a way that she's unable to connect with her constituents. And Harriet Hageman is capitalizing on that. And Harriet Hageman is as Wyoming as Wyoming can be. So on one side, accusations of Liz Cheney being a carpetbagger that go all the way to her very short Senate campaign less than 10 years ago. Harriet Hagan can say I was born in Wyoming. I went to undergraduate in Wyoming. I got my law degree here in Wyoming. I practice law in Wyoming. I will go to every county, meet with every voter, shake every hand while Liz Cheney is busy in DC. And that is a message that is really resonating and, frankly, pissing a lot of Republican voters off because they feel abandoned. And fear and abandonment will really push people to the polls. They already have during the early voting process, and it's sure to do today as well. And I think the funniest part-- the most interesting wrinkle of all of this is that Harriet Hageman used to be a Liz Cheney supporter. In fact, she was an advisor to that very short Senate campaign. And now since Trump's endorsement has come into play, that love has been lost. - Yeah, election denier or not, Liz Cheney's opponent definitely has a better ground game there. And I never thought I'd be saying these words, Brittany, but Cheney's beliefs-- yes, Republican Cheney appears to be appealing more to Democrats. Could they potentially save her during today's primaries? - Yeah, it's stunning, Kenneth. 95% conservative vote Liz Cheney might be helped by Democrats and independents. But the math is really not on her side. I spoke to experts and folks at 538 who told me if every single Democrat and independent in the state reregistered as Republican, something that you can do here right at your polling place, that they would still need some kind of Republicans to carry Liz Cheney. And even though those odds are tough, that's not stopping some Democrats from trying. I spoke to several Democrats last week who told me even though they couldn't agree on Cheney pretty much about anything-- one even told me that she got a rash changing her party identification from Democrat to Republican-- that there's too much at stake for democracy to not show up tonight. - She got a rash. There's a cream for that. Brittany, as you put it, voters in this least populous state in the country are poised to have a huge impact on the fate of the Republican Party. What will today's results tell us about the GOP as we head into the midterms? - I think, principally, it's going to answer two questions. One-- is the Republican political legacy dead? If the Chaney name can't carry you in a state like Wyoming, what is there left for a Republican political legacy? And two, perhaps more principally, is there space for anti-Trump Republicans in this version of the Republican Party? There's a lot of chatter on both sides of the aisle to say there might be or there isn't, and there's lots of opining on how much of an influence Donald Trump has on the party. But if Liz Cheney goes down like we think, perhaps by double digits, 10 to 20 points, you're going to have to call into the question how much stepping out of line from Trump will cost you your job if you're a Republican in Congress. - All right. And we will be watching Wyoming throughout the day and this evening. Brittany Shepard, good to talk with you, friend. Thank you.

This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.

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