Report: Washington, D.C.-based Club for Growth urging Sessions to run for his old seat
After Yellowhammer News on Monday morning reported that former U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions is seriously considering a bid for his old Alabama Senate seat, Politico later in the day provided some context into one of the groups supporting the potential candidacy.
According to Politico, Washington, D.C.-based Club for Growth is among a group of “high-profile allies pushing [Sessions] to run for his old seat.”
Speaking to Politico, Club for Growth president David McIntosh stated, “The Club for Growth has in the past and would once again encourage him (Sessions) to run for that Senate seat.”
“We were enthusiastic way back early on that Sessions, when he retired from the attorney general spot, might go back to the Senate,” he added. “At that point he didn’t want to think about that because he was just finishing up one job. I’m very encouraged he’s now seriously considering it.”
What many view as Sessions’ biggest liability if he runs for the Senate has also been an issue in recent years with Club for Growth — President Donald Trump.
Trump has been harshly critical of Session’s performance as attorney general, also lobbing personal attacks at the native Alabamian.
On the other hand, Club for Growth spent over $11 million against Trump in the 2016 primary cycle, becoming known as a leader in the “Never Trump” movement. This was the first time in the organization’s history it got involved in a presidential primary.
The Hill in 2016 even published an article headlined, “Club For Growth is Trump enemy No. 1.”
McIntosh was actually quoted in that article, saying, “[Trump’s] not really a conservative. He’ll tell what he wants you to hear, and who knows what he’d do if he got into office.”
Club for Growth’s policy positions center on supporting a free-market economic system, including free trade.
Sessions, in contrast, was actually the first high-profile elected official to back Trump’s campaign early on in the primary race.
However, Trump recently said he wished that endorsement never happened and publicly declared that Sessions’ tenure as AG was “a total disaster.”
“He was an embarrassment to the great state of Alabama,” Trump remarked. “And I put him there because he endorsed me, and he wanted it so badly. And I wish he’d never endorsed me.”
Sessions, for his part, has refused to utter a bad word about the president. In fact, Sessions endorsed Trump’s reelection bid earlier this year and has spoken in staunch support of policy priorities of his administration since Sessions left it.
The deadline for Sessions to qualify as a Republican candidate for Alabama’s 2020 Senate race is Friday, November 8.
He would join a crowded field led by former Auburn University head football coach Tommy Tuberville, Congressman Bradley Byrne (AL-01), former Alabama Supreme Court Chief Justice Roy Moore, Secretary of State John Merrill and State Rep. Arnold Mooney (R-Indian Springs).
Sessions has $2,480,802 left in his federal campaign account from his previous service in the Senate.
Sean Ross is the editor of Yellowhammer News. You can follow him on Twitter @sean_yhn