By Daniel Strauss - 07/17/13 01:50 PM EDT
Liz Cheney picked the "wrong race at the wrong time" in her challenge to Sen. Mike Enzi (R-Wyo.), a member of Senate GOP leadership said Wednesday.
"I have a great respect for the Cheney family, for the vice president, for Lynn and for Liz," Sen. John Barrasso (R-Wyo.) said on MSNBC's "Daily Rundown."
Cheney on Tuesday announced she would run against Enzi in the Republican Senate primary in Wyoming. Barrasso is supporting Enzi over Cheney, who is the daughter of former Vice President Dick Cheney.
"Mike has a very strong, solid conservative record of getting things done for the people of Wyoming," Barrasso said. "He is my friend; he is my mentor. I think he does a great job representing Wyoming in the United States Senate, and I'm going to support him for reelection."
Liz Cheney, a former Fox News commentator and former State Department official, announced her candidacy in a six-minute video clip released Tuesday.
"I am running for the United States Senate because I believe deeply in the values that have made our state and our nation great," Cheney said in the announcement. "I'm running because I believe it is necessary for a new generation of leaders to step up to the plate."
Cheney made the announcement shortly after Enzi said he would run for reelection. Enzi said he was surprised she jumped in the race.
"She said that if I ran, she wasn't going to run, but obviously that wasn't correct," Enzi told reporters on Tuesday. "I thought we were friends."
- This story was updated to reflect that Cheney is no longer a commentator for Fox News.