GOP strategist Ed Rollins accused Liz Cheney of moving to Wyoming simply to run for office following her Tuesday bid to challenge Wyoming’s senior Sen. Mike Enzi for his seat.
Her candidacy will be portrayed as “a housewife who’s kind of bored who moved back to Wyoming after a long time to run for the Senate,” Rollins told The Hill. “Unfortunately for Liz, that’s not a state like California or New York where you can carpetbag very easily, and even though she was born there she hasn’t been there for a long time.”
Carpetbagging is a term for opportunists who moved to the South following the Civil War—the word is derived from Northerners’ carpet-material luggage. Rollins has worked as a FOX analyst as well as a longtime campaign strategist and adviser. He lead President Ronald Reagan’s re-election campaign in 1984. More recently, he ran Mike Huckabee’s failed campaign for president in 2008.
Cheney, who is the daughter of former Vice President Dick Cheney, responded affirming her Wyoming history.
“I am a fourth-generation Wyomingite. My family first came here in 1825, walking the Mormon Trail in search of religious freedom. My great-grandfather settled here in 1907. Wyoming has always been home,” Cheney said. “In my experience, people who launch the carpetbagger charge do so to avoid talking about issues and substance. I intend to run a campaign worthy of the people of Wyoming, focused on policy and how we can defend the values that have made this state and nation great.”
On Friday’s Morning Joe, former Republican National Committee chairman joked that Cheney’s race was garnering inappropriate remarks on both sides. Earlier this week, Cheney said her opponent was “confused” about earlier conversations where Enzi said she promised not to run if he sought reelection.
“It’s amazing that 24 hours over the gate, both sides have stepped in it—Liz Cheney with her agist comment and Ed Rollings with his sexist comment about Liz.”
Watch the full Morning Joe discussion below.