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Liz Cheney, targeting Ted Cruz as an ‘election denier,’ has edge on him in new GOP presidential poll

Houston Chronicle 11/23/2022 Benjamin Wermund, Washington Bureau

WASHINGTON — A new poll of possible 2024 GOP presidential contenders has U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz trailing U.S. Rep. Liz Cheney, a prominent Republican critic of former President Donald Trump who has slammed the Texas Republican as an “election denier.”

RELATED: Liz Cheney says her PAC will target Ted Cruz and other GOP ‘election deniers’

The Emerson College poll released this week asked voters who they would pick in a GOP primary in 2024. Cruz drew 3.4 percent, just behind Cheney’s 3.6 percent. Trump, with 24.5 percent, and Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis, with 11 percent, were the top choices. 

Cruz’s Senate term runs through 2024, and the Texas Republican has said he would run again for president “in a heartbeat” after coming in second to Trump in the 2016 GOP primary. Cheney, meanwhile, has said she will do “whatever it takes” to make sure Trump is not the nominee in 2024, and she hasn't ruled out a presidential bid of her own to stop him.

Cruz and Cheney have been feuding since the summer, when Cheney launched a political action committee she said would target Cruz and other Republicans who “made themselves unfit for future office” by going along with Trump’s false claims about the 2020 presidential election.

Cruz responded that Trump “shattered” Cheney’s mind and that she has “just become a liberal Democrat” because of her role on the House committee investigating the Jan. 6 Capitol riots.

Cruz led an effort in the Senate to delay certifying President Joe Biden’s election win and objected to Arizona’s electoral votes less than an hour before demonstrators breached the Capitol on Jan. 6, 2021, pointing to “unprecedented” — and unproven — allegations of voter fraud. Cruz at the time was pushing for an “emergency audit,” which he has argued could have provided the final say Trump supporters needed to accept the results.

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