Former Attorney General Jeff Sessions has launched his U.S. Senate bid in Alabama with a new campaign ad centered around sucking up to Donald Trump and his followers.
Says Sessions in the ad: “When I left President Trump’s cabinet, did I write a tell all book? No. Did I go on CNN and attack the President? Nope. Have I said a cross word about President Trump? Not one time. And I’ll tell you why: First, that would be dishonorable. I was there to serve his agenda, not mine. Second, the President is doing a great job for America and Alabama, and he has my strong support.”
A statement put out by Sessions on his campaign website adds more: “As everyone knows, President Trump and I have had our ups and downs. But here’s the important part: the President is doing great work for America. When President Trump took on Washington, only one Senator out of a hundred had the courage to stand with him: me. I was the first to support President Trump. I was his strongest advocate. I still am. We must make America great again. Our freedoms have never been under attack like they are today. We have major party candidates for President campaigning on socialism, confiscating firearms, and closing down churches they disagree with. I’ve battled these forces my entire life, and I’m not about to surrender now. Let’s go!”
“Ups and downs” could not be more understated, as the NYT notes: ‘Mr. Trump relentlessly attacked Mr. Sessions both in public and in private, calling him “scared stiff” and his leadership “a total joke,” among other insults, ultimately forcing him to resign. By choosing to run for office now, Mr. Sessions risks reigniting attacks from his former boss, who could undermine his standing among the Republican voters he needs to win next year’s crowded primary election on March 3. Mr. Trump, for his part, continues to blame Mr. Sessions for the two-year Russia probe, and last weekend he repeatedly denounced Mr. Sessions, saying he was a “jerk” and making it clear Mr. Sessions would not have his support, according to a person briefed on the discussions.’
MSNBC’s Chris Hayes offered some remarks on Sessions’ move: “Now, that is probably, I’m just guessing, not going to appease the president. NBC News reports it has been made clear to Sessions that Trump intends to campaign against him. According to the Washington Post, Trump has even joked to senators and White House aides that he would move to Alabama and compete against Sessions himself in the primary, which would be weird and, I guess, interesting. So now the question is, will the president go to war against perhaps the person most likely to carry the state for Republicans?”