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Ad attack calls Liz Cheney soft on gay marriage opposition

The bitter Wyoming GOP Senate primary got a new jolt on Monday from a new ad calling Liz Cheney soft on opposing gay marriage -- even though she's already come out against it. 

Cheney, the daughter of former vice president Dick Cheney, has already ruffled feathers in Republican circles with her primary bid against incumbent GOP Sen. Mike Enzi. But this new attack, being run by an outside conservative Super PAC, looks to paint her as a social liberal -- even after she put out a statement earlier this year reiterating she was "strongly pro-life and I am not pro-gay marriage" even though her sister, Mary, is openly gay and married to her longtime partner with two children.

“I believe the issue of marriage must be decided by the states, and by the people in the states, not by judges and not even by legislators, but by the people themselves," Cheney said. Her father has also said come out in favor of gay marriage, and Liz Cheney's pre-emptive statement drew a rebuke from her sister, who wrote on her Facebook page that, "I love my sister, but she is dead wrong on the issue of marriage," the New York Times reported.

It's the first television ad from either side -- the increasingly bitter primary is more than 10 months away in August 2014 -- and it's from American Principles Fund, headed by Sarah Huckabee Sanders, the daughter of former Arkansas governor and onetime presidential candidate Mike Huckabee.

"The unilateral truce on social issues within the GOP is bad for our party and wrong for our country – our core values are under attack, and we will stand for those who stand for what’s right," Huckabee Sanders said in a release.

The new commercial knocks Cheney for appearing on MSNBC in the past, claiming she "campaigns as a conservative" in Wyoming, but in Washington spoke out "against the marriage amendment."

The ad spotlights a 2009 appearance where Cheney said she "would not like to see a constitutional amendment" banning gay marriage and also supported government benefits for gay couples.

"I applaud for example the State Department decision to extend benefits to same-sex partners around the world," Cheney said in 2009.

The ad's kicker "Liz Cheney: Wrong for Wyoming."