I’d like to agree with Gene Healy on this, but it seems a bit far-fetched:
Still, I’d like to see Cheney fight for that Senate seat — and I do mean fight. This race could be the hill (or valley, whatever) that neoconservatism dies on.
It’s a nice thought, but I imagine Healy knows that it wouldn’t work this way. If the Iraq war and the 2006, 2008, and 2012 elections didn’t kill off neoconservatism in the GOP, it is difficult to imagine what could. Compared to ten years ago, neoconservatives have noticeably less influence on the right than they once did, but most Republicans in Washington still follow their lead on foreign policy with depressing regularity. Considering how unpopular military interventions are, it is a bit surprising how rare it is for primary challengers to attack incumbents over their support for hyper-activist and aggressive foreign policy, but if there is going to be a significant change in the party on these issues that is what will have to start happening.
A failed Cheney primary challenge would be amusing to watch, but unfortunately that’s the only value that it would have. This is another reason why the idea of a challenge against Enzi makes no sense: there’s no evidence that I’m aware of that he and Cheney disagree on any major issues. If Enzi were relatively moderate on some domestic issues, or if he were known to be a realist or a skeptic of military intervention, it might make a certain ideological sense for a hard-liner to challenge him, but he is neither of these.