President Donald Trump on Thursday afternoon exuberantly tweeted his affection for the state of Alabama, however the image he sent out along with the tweet has political observers in the Yellowhammer State collectively scratching their heads.
Along with his caption of “I LOVE ALABAMA!” Trump tweeted out a graph depicting the topline results of an Alabama Farmers Federation poll that was conducted in early December on the Republican U.S. Senate primary.
To be clear, this polling data is at least somewhat outdated. Almost two full months have passed since the survey was conducted, and Congressman Bradley Byrne (AL-01) has since started advertising on television.
You can read about that poll from Yellowhammer News’ original reporting here.
While people not-named Donald Trump may speculate as to why the president tweeted out the poll now — and exactly what he likes about it — only Trump really knows at this point.
Ultimately, all of the top GOP Senate campaigns right now are just as confused as the general public about the tweet.
However, it is noteworthy in and of itself that Trump tweeted anything at all about the primary. He has remained silent on the race since initially answering questions after his former U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions entered the primary in early November.
In a statement to Yellowhammer News on Thursday, Sessions campaign manager Jon Jones reacted to the tweet by saying, “President Trump loves Alabama — and Alabama loves our president. Alabama gave President Trump one of his biggest margins of victory in 2016, and as this and other polls have shown, Republican voters in Alabama solidly back Jeff Sessions in the U.S. Senate race.”
“It’s easy for politicians to talk big now, but when the chips were down in 2016, Senator Jeff Sessions was President Trump’s strongest ally. Jeff Sessions is the conservative fighter Alabama needs in Washington, helping to advance the Trump agenda in the U.S. Senate,” he concluded.
Lenze Morris, press secretary for Byrne’s campaign, also reacted in a statement.
“We’re excited the president is watching this race. That polling is over two months old, and we know this is a close race. Bradley Byrne is going to win,” she said.
Former State Rep. Perry O. Hooper, Jr. (R-Montgomery) on Thursday afternoon told Yellowhammer News that the one thing above speculation is that Trump is looking forward to Alabama sending a second Republican senator to support his agenda in Washington, D.C. All of the top three Republican Senate contenders, Hooper said, would handily defeat Senator Doug Jones (D-AL) in November, which is the ultimate goal.
Trump’s Alabama approval rating has consistently been among the nation’s highest — if not the highest.
Sean Ross is the editor of Yellowhammer News. You can follow him on Twitter @sean_yhn