It's interesting to me that Cheney has (probably) sold out her actual beliefs and feelings toward her sister for the sake of looking like a strong social conservative in Wyoming. Because of this, I grow increasingly sure that Cheney doesn't really understand her audience here in Wyoming (or the fact that Enzi, the senator she's challenging, is in many ways already right of your average Wyoming GOP voter). Supporting LGBT rights isn't a straightforward losing proposition here. Our state legislature has shut down DOMA-type bills on more than one occasion on small-government logic. Also, in the last legislative session, a domestic partnership bill passed out of committee — while it was defeated by nine votes, it was still a big step and opened a conversation that has garnered increasing support for legal recognition of same-sex spouses.

Wyoming Republicanism has, I think, always been a bit different from the mainstream, and so far Cheney's self-presentation has indicated to me that she doesn't have any sense for that. In a larger sense, what it means to be a conservative and a Republican is beginning to evolve — will have to, if the GOP wants to stay relevant. Interesting that these Tea Party types don't see their own waning relevance.