Former Sen. Alan Simpson (R-WY) blamed Republican Senate candidate Liz Cheney’s desire to win the Wyoming Senate race for the increasingly visible feuding between Cheney and her sister Mary over same-sex marriage.
“You’re not even destroying friendships —you’re destroying family relationships because of this race,” Simpson said in an interview with NBCNews.com. “It’s hard for all of us who know the Cheneys to see the things she’s doing to win this race. It’s almost like she’ll do anything to win this race, because I cannot ever believe that there would be a breach between she and Mary.”
Simpson’s comments are in response to Liz Cheney reiterating her opposition to same-sex marriage during a television appearance on Sunday. In response, Cheney’s sister Mary, who is a lesbian, said her sister was “dead wrong” on the issue. Mary Cheney also later told The New York Times that she did not plan on seeing her sister at Christmas. The Cheney family is scheduled to go to Jackson Hole, Wyoming to celebrate the holiday.
Simpson himself has scuffled with the Cheney’s over Liz Cheney’s campaign. The former senator got into a heated confrontation with Lynne Cheney, Liz and Mary Cheney’s mother, over Simpson’s support of Sen. Mike Enzi’s (R-WY) re-election. Liz Cheney is challenging Enzi.
On Monday, former Vice President Dick Cheney weighed in saying that he and his wife felt “pained” that the disagreement between their two daughters had become public.
“This is an issue we have dealt with privately for many years, and we are pained to see it become public. Since it has, one thing should be clear. Liz has always believed in the traditional definition of marriage,” Cheney and Lynne said in a joint statement. “She has also always treated her sister and her sister’s family with love and respect, exactly as she should have done. Compassion is called for, even when there is disagreement about such a fundamental matter and Liz’s many kindnesses shouldn’t be used to distort her position.”