Her allies said that attempts to punish her were counterproductive at a time when the party should be united in opposition to Democratic control of Washington.
“The beneficiaries of Republican fratricide are Democrats,” said Karl Rove, the former Bush strategist, who is close to the Cheney family. “So the more we have purity tests and everyone has to think and act alike, particularly when it comes to former President Trump, it’s only helping Democrats.”
But many of her constituents see no problem with making an example of her.
A rally outside the State Capitol last week headlined by Matt Gaetz, the Florida congressman and Trump loyalist, drew several hundred people. They chanted “No more Cheney!” and cheered as Mr. Gaetz ripped into “Never Trump” Republicans, calling them relics from a party that Mr. Trump has transformed from its days under the leadership of the Bushes and Ms. Cheney’s father, former Vice President Dick Cheney.
“We control the true spirit and identity of America,” said Mr. Gaetz, who is leading the effort to oust Ms. Cheney from the House leadership.
After his speech, Teresa Kunkel, a retired state employee, said that she had attended the rally because, as a Christian, she did not believe Ms. Cheney was being an honest representative for Wyoming. “She didn’t represent what we voted for,” Ms. Kunkel said. “She betrayed us — big time.”
The second impeachment of Mr. Trump last month, which Ms. Cheney supported, was an injustice, Ms. Kunkel added. “It’s like: ‘I didn’t like what you did, so you’re out. And we’re in the majority, so we can do that.’ That’s cancel culture,” she said.