The Daily Item, Sunbury, PA

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November 18, 2013

Cheney sisters trade barbs over same-sex marriage

The public war of words over same-sex marriage between former Vice President Dick Cheney's daughters escalated Sunday when Mary Cheney and her wife sharply criticized Liz Cheney for expressing clear opposition to gay marriage during a national television interview.

The back-and-forth was the latest round of a public split that has intensified in recent months. It comes as Liz Cheney is immersed in a heated campaign for the U.S. Senate in Wyoming, where her views on same-sex marriage have come under great scrutiny. It is also yet another instance of the Cheney family's views on marriage becoming enmeshed in politics.

In an appearance on "Fox News Sunday," Liz Cheney reiterated her opposition to same-sex marriage, telling host Chris Wallace that she disagrees with her younger sister, Mary, a lesbian who married her longtime partner, Heather Poe, in 2012.

"I love Mary very much. I love her family very much. This is just an issue on which we disagree," Liz Cheney said.

That prompted a swift rebuke from Mary Cheney and Poe, who took to Facebook to voice their disapproval in strikingly personal terms.

"Liz has been a guest in our home, has spent time and shared holidays with our children, and when Mary and I got married in 2012 — she didn't hesitate to tell us how happy she was for us," wrote Poe. "To have her now say she doesn't support our right to marry is offensive to say the least." Mary Cheney shared Poe's message on the social-networking website, adding: "Liz — this isn't just an issue on which we disagree — you're just wrong — and on the wrong side of history."

In August, the spat spilled into public view after Liz Cheney said she is "strongly pro-life" and "not pro-gay marriage." In response, Mary Cheney wrote on Facebook that while she loves her sister, she is "dead wrong on the issue of marriage."

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