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Trump rescinds Brooks endorsement in Alabama US Senate race

Mo Brooks, as US Representative of Alabama, speaking during a Pro-Trump rally on January 6, 2021, Washington, DC. (Provided Photo/AP)

MONTGOMERY, Ala. (AP) — Former President Donald Trump on Wednesday rescinded his endorsement of Rep. Mo Brooks in Alabama’s U.S. Senate race in a major blow to the congressman’s campaign.

In a statement, Trump cited Brooks’ performance in the race, poor campaign staffing and what Trump perceived as a softening of Brooks’ stance on the former president’s false 2020 election fraud claims. Trump said he will be making another endorsement announcement in the “near future.”

“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 said in a statement.

Trump has backed Brooks since last April, more than a year ahead of the upcoming May 24 primary, rewarding the conservative firebrand and ally who whipped up a crowd of Trump supporters at the Jan. 6, 2021, rally that preceded the Capitol insurrection.

Brooks has since found himself in a primary battle with two formidable opponents: Katie Britt, the former head of a state business group, and Mike Durant, a businessman best known as the helicopter pilot shot down and held prisoner in the 1993 “Black Hawk Down” incident.

The Alabama Senate race will decide who replaces retiring U.S. Sen. Richard Shelby, a fellow Republican. Britt previously served as Shelby’s chief of staff.