Liz Cheney Ends Senate Bid (UPDATE)

Liz Cheney released a statement early Monday confirming plans to end her Senate bid, Politico reported.

The announcement was first reported by CNN on Sunday evening after the cable network learned from sources that Cheney had told staff members of her intent to drop out of the primary.

The elder daughter to former Vice President Dick Cheney, Liz Cheney announced her challenge to incumbent Sen. Mike Enzi (R-Wyo.) in July. Early Monday morning, she issued a statement confirming her plans to discontinue the campaign, and cited "serious health issues" in her family, Politico reported.

"As a mother and a patriot, I know that the work of defending freedom and protecting liberty must continue for each generation," Cheney stated. "Though this campaign stops today, my commitment to keep fighting with you and your families for the fundamental values that have made this nation and Wyoming great will never stop."

Cheney faced an uphill battle throughout her brief campaign, fighting off criticism for running in a state in which she hadn't lived very long and faring poorly in the few public polls conducted after her announcement.

The campaign also sparked a notable family feud when Cheney asserted she was "not pro-gay marriage." The comment offended her sister, Mary Cheney, who wed her longtime partner in Washington, D.C., last year.

"For the record, I love my sister, but she is dead wrong on the issue of marriage," Mary Cheney wrote in a Facebook post in September.

"Freedom means freedom for everyone," Mary Cheney continued. "That means that all families -- regardless of how they look or how they are made -- all families are entitled to the same rights, privileges and protections as every other."

Although he endorsed same-sex marriage in 2009, the former vice president took Liz Cheney's side, saying he was "surprised" that Mary Cheney and her partner had taken to Facebook to "attack" the senatorial candidate.

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