GOP senators to Liz Cheney: We like Mike Enzi

Working in Enzi’s favor is the fact that former Vice President Dick Cheney’s Capitol Hill connections appear to have weakened after nearly five years out of office, according to interviews with more than a dozen Republican senators. Despite claiming long-standing ties and friendships with the former vice president, members said they now rarely speak with him. At this point, they don’t know of anything he has done to promote his daughter’s candidacy.

“I respect Dick Cheney, but Dick Cheney’s not running,” said Sen. Richard Shelby (R-Ala.), who served in the House alongside Cheney.

“I don’t know why in the world she’s doing this,” Sen. Orrin Hatch (R-Utah) said of Liz Cheney.

Hatch calls Dick Cheney one of his best friends, though they speak rarely now. Enzi is “honest and decent, hard-working; he’s got very important positions in the Senate. He’s highly respected. And these are all things that would cause anybody to say: ‘Why would anybody run against him?’”

Liz Cheney “knows how hard this potentially is,” said Sen. Richard Burr of North Carolina. “It may be she’s looking down the road, and this is in preparation for something.”

“[Dick Cheney] has a lot of friends, and I’m one of them,” said Sen. Roy Blunt of Missouri, a member of GOP leadership. “Who knows how this would work if it’s an open seat. But it’s not.”