Former President Trump on Wednesday yanked his endorsement of Rep. Mo Brooks’ (R-AL) bid for an Alabama Senate seat after the GOP senator dared to utter it was time to move on from the 2020 presidential election.
In a statement through his Save America PAC on Wednesday, Trump griped that Brooks recently made a “horrible mistake” when he apparently “went woke” by telling his supporters they should put the 2020 election “behind you.”
Trump also complained about Brooks’ lackluster performance in the polls — which the former president attributed to Brooks supposedly hiring new campaign staff who convinced him to “stop talking about the 2020 election.”
Trump pointed to Brooks’ remarks at a MAGA rally in Alabama last year, when the GOP senator urged voters to stop feeling “despondent” about 2020 and “look forward” to 2022 and 2024 — a remark that reportedly spurred Trump’s doubts about his initial endorsement of Brooks.
“When I heard his statement, I said, ‘Mo, you just blew the Election, and there’s nothing you can do about it,'” Trump said in his statement.
Trump then announced that he is retracting his endorsement of Brooks to replace retiring Sen. Richard Shelby (R-AL).
“Very sad but, since he decided to go in another direction, so have I, and I am hereby withdrawing my endorsement of Mo Brooks for the Senate. I don’t think the great people of Alabama will disagree with me.”
Trump’s retraction of his initial endorsement of Brooks comes a week after the former president told the Washington Examiner that he was considering revoking it. Trump suggested that his support for Brooks was at risk because of the GOP congressman’s remarks at one of his rallies in Alabama last year.
“I’m disappointed that he gave an inarticulate answer, and I’ll have to find out what he means,” Trump told the Examiner last week, referring to Brooks’ remarks at a rally in Alabama last year. “If it meant what he sounded like, I would have no problem changing [my endorsement] because when you endorse somebody, you endorse somebody based on principle. If he changed that principle, I would have no problem doing that.”
The former president, however, told the Examiner last week that he believes Brooks “felt strongly” about the Big Lie and that “he still does.”
It didn’t take long for Brooks to rush out a campaign ad vowing his loyalty to Trump shortly after the former president’s interview with the Examiner was published last week. Brooks’ ad featured his speech at the “Stop the Steal” rally that preceded the deadly Capitol insurrection last year.
In the past week, Brooks also released a campaign ad vowing to “fight” Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY), who has become one of Trump’s favorite punching bags since McConnell condemned the former president for failing to call off the mob of his supporters who stormed the Capitol last year and endangered lawmakers’ lives.
Brooks’ efforts to save his endorsement from Trump have obviously been fruitless. Trump has not indicated whether he would back one of Brooks’ primary rivals instead as the incumbent GOP congressman continues to struggle in the polls. The former president told the Examiner last week that he is “not particularly happy” with the “very tight race” between Brooks and his two primary rivals: Katie Britt, Shelby’s former chief of staff, or Mike Durant, a businessman and military veteran.