Republican political hopefuls supporting Donald Trump battle for the former president’s endorsement | News

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An endorsement from former President Donald Trump goes a long way, as his power over Republican voters continues to appear strong.

As primary season approaches, Republican candidates, who are eager to hold seats in the Senate and House, are broadcasting their support for the former president, endorsing his campaign for a return to the White House, even if Trump has been hesitant to throw his weight behind candidates in key states.

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An underwhelming 2022 midterm election cycle has been blamed on Trump’s backing of controversial candidates who succeeded in GOP primaries, but failed to win-over voters in the general election. While the new head of the National Republican Senatorial Committee, Sen. Steve Daines (R-MT), has been more outspoken with the panel’s own endorsement power, including supporting Trump’s efforts, the former president has been following Daines’s lead about his campaign’s involvement in contests.

Here are some promising GOP contenders looking to win seats in vulnerable states by supporting Trump, but not relying on his support for them.

Tim Sheehy — Montana

Tim Sheehy is running to replace Sen. Jon Tester (D-MT) in the red state, which was won by Trump in the past two presidential elections.

While Sheehy didn’t vote for Trump in 2016, he’s since committed to supporting the former president this election cycle, saying he’s “100%” backing him.

“I support Trump 100% and his efforts there,” Sheehy said about Trump’s recent legal battles in a Montana Talks interview.

“I support his candidacy, and I support his work to vindicate himself against these charges, which appear to be incredibly politically motivated,” Sheehy added.

Sheehy, a Navy SEAL veteran, has garnered endorsements from several major senators who have also endorsed Trump, including Sens. Bill Hagerty (R-TN), Cindy Hyde-Smith (R-MS), Tom Cotton (R-AR), and Marsha Blackburn (R-TN).

In the same race, Trump informed Rep. Matt Rosendale (R-MT), a member of the House Freedom Caucus, that he would not back him if he chose to cast his bid to replace Tester.

Trump endorsed Rosendale in the 2020 U.S. House race, where the Congressman defeated Democratic challenger Kathleen Williams 56.4% to 43.6%, and has since earned the former president’s endorsement for reelection.

Rosendale has not launched a Senate campaign, but discussions have circulated as the GOP hopes to flip the seat held by a prominent Democratic figure.

Jim Justice — West Virginia

Gov. Jim Justice (R-WV) is facing off against Sen. Joe Manchin (D-WV) for his seat in Congress—possibly the most vulnerable Democrat in the 2024 election cycle. The governor announced his endorsement of Trump earlier this month, who previously endorsed Justice in 2020, but has, so far, not yet said if he will support his Congressional efforts.

As for Trump’s latest White House bid, Justice said he does “firmly believe he will be our nominee and be re-elected as our next President.”

Manchin faces challenges by Justice and Rep. Alex Mooney (R-WV), who is backed by the anti-Trump Club for Growth PAC. Though there’s been a recent split between the Club for Growth and Trump, Mooney backed Trump in previous elections.

However, Justice has received the support of Sen. Daines as his preferred Senatorial candidate.

Mike Bost — Illinois

Rep. Mike Bost (IR-IL) formally announced his reelection campaign last month for Illinois’ 12th Congressional District.

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“I was proud to offer my full endorsement for his 2024 reelection after serving as an Illinois chair for his previous campaigns,” Bost said in February regarding his support for Donald Trump’s presidential run.

Trump endorsed Bost in last year’s election when he beat his Democratic opponent with huge margins, saying he’s “fighting to Secure the Border, Grow the Economy, Protect Life, and Defend the Second Amendment. Mike Bost has my Complete and Total Endorsement!”

Both Bost and his rival, Darren Bailey, were endorsed by the former president in previous races, but Trump has not expressed his endorsement for either this election.

Darren Bailey

Bailey, the former Illinois Republican state senator who lost his gubernatorial bid in 2023, announced his challenge to Bost’s seat earlier in July.

The GOP hopeful praised Trump a day after the former president entered a plea of “not guilty” back in June, when he was indicted on charges of illegally storing classified documents.

“What President Trump went through yesterday could happen to anyone [sic] of us for any reason!” Bailey said. “We must elect and support men and women who will stand firm in their beliefs and not waiver! [sic]”

Trump endorsed Bailey for Illinois governor in 2022, but has yet to comment on the matters of the current race.

Frank LaRose — Ohio

Republicans are hopeful they’ll be able to flip a critical Senate seat in Ohio in 2024, and have thrown support behind Ohio Secretary of State Frank LaRose to replace Sen. Sherrod Brown (D-OH), in a state that supported Trump in 2020.

“President Trump has been one of the most relentless and resilient warriors in American politics,” LaRose said in a statement of support. “We’re in a battle for the heart and soul of our nation, and President Trump is that leader.

While Trump supported LaRose’s reelection in 2022, it is unclear where he stands in the Senate race after praising GOP candidate Bernie Moreno earlier this year.

Bernie Moreno — Ohio

“Word is that Bernie Moreno, the highly respected businessman from the GREAT STATE of OHIO, and the father-in-law of fantastic young Congressman, Max Miller, is thinking of running for the Senate,” Trump posted to Truth Social in April. “He would not be easy to beat, especially against Brown, one of the worst in the Senate!

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LaRose joins fellow GOP contenders state Sen. Matt Dolan and Moreno, however, not all candidates are hoping for Trump’s stamp of approval.

Dolan is considered a rare anti-Trump Republican candidate after launching criticism against the former president for his alleged role in attempting to overturn 2020 election results, which Trump is currently under federal investigation for, and may face a third indictment.

He said Trump showed a “failure of leadership” while referring to the Capitol riots of Jan. 6, 2021, calling the incident an “attack on democracy,” according to Politico.

Original Location: Republican political hopefuls supporting Donald Trump battle for the former president’s endorsement

 

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