Former President Donald Trump weighed in on the GOP Montana Senate primary, endorsing former Navy SEAL Tim Sheehy over Republican Rep. Matt Rosendale.
“I LOVE MONTANA! Tim Sheehy is an American Hero and highly successful Businessman from the Great State of Montana,” Trump wrote on Truth Social. “He is strongly supported by our incredible Chairman of the NRSC, Steve Daines, and many other patriotic Senators and Republicans who have endorsed our Campaign to, MAKE AMERICA GREAT AGAIN!”
Montana GOP Rep Matt Rosendale on Friday announced his official bid to challenge Democrat Sen. John Tester for his seat.
Rosendale failed to unseat Tester in 2018.
A poll released Thursday indicates the Senate GOP campaign arm’s pick to unseat Montana’s incumbent Democratic senator in 2024 is not faring well in a potential primary.
Former Navy SEAL Tim Sheehy, who was recruited by the National Republican Senatorial Committee (NRSC), is losing by double digits to Republican Rep. Matt Rosendale, who’s considering a bid, according to a J.L. Partners survey. Sheehy garnered only 21% support compared to Rosendale’s 52%, with 28% of GOP primary voters remaining undecided as to which Republican should take on Democratic Sen. Jon Tester.
Republican leaders in both chambers of Montana’s state legislature along with 37 other lawmakers are backing U.S. Rep. Matt Rosendale for Senate in 2024, who has yet to launch a bid and is not the favorite of the GOP in Washington, D.C.
Former Navy SEAL Tim Sheehy was recruited to run by the National Republican Senatorial Committee (NRSC) Chairman Steve Daines of Montana and Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell of Kentucky, and has received endorsements from GOP Gov. Greg Gianforte along with numerous other national Republicans. Montana’s Senate President Jason Ellsworth, Speaker of the House Matt Regier and other legislators argued Rosendale is the best candidate to beat Democratic Sen. Jon Tester and challenge the “establishment” in Washington, D.C., according to the letter.
As prominent national Republicans line up behind a political newcomer and decorated veteran as their pick to win back a coveted Senate seat in 2024, grassroots Montana conservatives are frustrated with what they perceive as unwelcome outside influence attempting to sway the primary race.
National Republican Senatorial Committee (NRSC) Chairman Steve Daines of Montana and Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell recruited Tim Sheehy, who quickly secured endorsements from Republican Gov. Greg Gianforte and several other senators since his late June campaign launch. However, Montana Republicans and grassroots activists who spoke to the Daily Caller News Foundation view Sheehy as the D.C. establishment’s candidate and would rather see GOP Rep. Matt Rosendale run for the seat currently held by Democratic Sen. Jon Tester.