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Trump-appointed former ambassador Lynda Blanchard first to enter Alabama’s U.S. Senate race

MONTGOMERY — Lynda Blanchard, the businesswoman who was appointed by President Donald Trump to serve as the U.S. ambassador to Slovenia, officially announced her candidacy for the U.S. Senate seat being vacated following the 2022 election by Senator Richard Shelby (R-AL).

A Montgomery native and first-time candidate, Blanchard made her announcement in a video released online.

To open the nearly three-minute spot, she described herself as a “Christian conservative and business builder,” as well as “a mother of eight wonderful children.”

“I’m a proud member of the MAGA movement,” she said. “Like you, I am grateful for the leadership and courage of our 45th president, Donald Trump.”

“Today, I begin a new journey: a bid to earn your trust and your vote to serve as the next United States senator from our great state, Alabama,” Blanchard continued. “I’d never thought about serving in public office until President Trump asked me to, when he offered me the chance to serve as our ambassador to Slovenia.”

She then noted that this post had added importance due to Slovenia being the birthplace of then-First Lady Melania Trump.

“I leapt at the opportunity to fight for the America First agenda,” Blanchard emphasized, “to successfully promote President Trump’s vision to keep the United States strong and respected. It was an honor. That calling lit a fire in me to continue the cause as a champion for the values we hold near and dear: free speech, the right to bear arms, religious freedom, the sanctity of life for all of God’s children — born and unborn, lower taxes, a secure border, the belief that America is the greatest nation that the world has ever known. Those ideas seem like commonsense to me and you.”

Blanchard, 61, comes from a business background. The lifelong Yellowhammer State resident co-founded B&M Management, a Montgomery-based real estate investment management company currently valued at more than $1 billion, in 1993.

And, much like Trump largely self-funded his successful 2016 presidential candidacy, Blanchard on Thursday announced she is making an initial $5 million deposit in her Senate campaign coffers to ensure she has the resources necessary to be competitive in what should shape up to be an intriguing Republican field.

Her campaign is being led by Jeff Roe and Ethan Zorfas of Axiom Strategies, who served as the lead consultants on now-Senator Tommy Tuberville’s (R-AL) successful campaign in the 2020 cycle.

Like Tuberville, Blanchard came right out of the gates in her announcement video positioning herself as an outsider and staunch supporter of Trump and Trump’s agenda.

She also warned that Democrats in Washington, D.C. are already hard at work “trying to erase triumphs of the Trump administration from our history.”

“If you’re sick of career politicians, insiders and swamp creatures that stand for socialism or cheerlead censorship, then I’m asking for your vote to stand strong for Alabama by sending a true outsider to the Senate,” Blanchard remarked. “My pledge to you is simple: together, guided by God’s blessings and your support, we will give the swamp a heckuva dose of the common sense and conservative principle that it needs to truly ‘Make America Great Again’ – just like Trump.”

A release from Blanchard’s campaign advised that as an ambassador during the Trump administration, she pressured Slovenia to maintain its NATO obligations, which was a major foreign policy initiative promoted by the president, and shepherded several bilateral agreements.

The campaign also pointed to Blanchard, guided by her Christian faith and a calling to aid children both domestically and internationally, co-founding and serving as CEO of the 100X Development Foundation beginning in 2004. The foundation reportedly seeks innovative ways to combat child poverty and is responsible for establishing orphanages, creating sustainable food production programs and funding on-going charitable efforts that have impacted the lives of thousands of families in 16 countries around the globe. It also supports multiple charities and programs serving children and vulnerable populations throughout Alabama.

Blanchard has four grown biological children and four adopted children. She is a board member of several charities and education programs, earned a degree in Mathematics and Computer Science from Auburn University, and is fluent in five computer programming languages.

Her campaign website has launched and can be accessed here.

Sean Ross is the editor of Yellowhammer News. You can follow him on Twitter @sean_yhn