The Daily Caller

The Daily Caller
U.S. Senate candidate Liz Cheney speaks with voters during a Republican and Tea Party gathering in Emblem, Wyoming August 24, 2013. Cheney, the eldest daughter of former Vice President Dick Cheney, received a mostly warm welcome from some 300 conservative Wyoming voters on Saturday despite having committed a political gaffe by mistakenly buying the wrong fishing license. REUTERS/Ruffin Prevost (UNITED STATES - Tags: POLITICS ELECTIONS) - RTX12VN5 U.S. Senate candidate Liz Cheney speaks with voters during a Republican and Tea Party gathering in Emblem, Wyoming August 24, 2013. Cheney, the eldest daughter of former Vice President Dick Cheney, received a mostly warm welcome from some 300 conservative Wyoming voters on Saturday despite having committed a political gaffe by mistakenly buying the wrong fishing license. REUTERS/Ruffin Prevost (UNITED STATES - Tags: POLITICS ELECTIONS) - RTX12VN5  

Let’s not assume Liz Cheney’s excuse is bogus

When a politician says he wants to “spend more time with their family,” we sort of know they are lying. This is especially true for a politician who is either in the midst of a scandal, or in danger of being handed a humiliating defeat. But what about when a politician cites “serious health issues” in her family? Should we cynically assume this is merely a convenient excuse?

Based on the Twitter and blog punditry surrounding Liz Cheney’s decision to drop her bid for U.S. Senate in Wyoming, that’s exactly what a lot of commentators are doing.

In fact, some of the punditry doesn’t even mention the stated health concerns at all – which is to say they assume the statement was so pro forma as to not even deserve mentioning.

Cheney’s statement was more specific than most, meaning that she is either a truly horrible person, or that some pundits may have egg on their face if and when more information surfaces.

“Serious health issues have recently arisen in our family,” she wrote, “and under the circumstances, I have decided to discontinue my campaign. My children and their futures were the motivation for our campaign and their health and well-being will always be my overriding priority.”

If she wanted to quit, why not just cite some trite excuse? Making up a lie about health concerns seems to me like bad karma. There are other reasons to believe she might be shooting straight:

I’m with Allahpundit. Why assume the worst? Any parent worth their salt would move heaven and earth to help their sick child. No political campaign is more important.

This is not to say skepticism is irresponsible. As the Washington Examiner’s Byron York notes,

There are good reasons why political journalists become cynical. But we must all strive to maintain our humanity. That’s a difficult balancing act in a competitive business where cynicism usually pays off.