Some Republican candidates may not be on the ballot this year, if legal challenges are successful. Both Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-GA) and Madison Cawthorn (R-NC) are facing challenges for their support of the failed insurrection attempt last January. However, one candidate who was hoping to represent Tennesee in the U.S. House is being taken off the ballot by her own party.
Morgan Ortagus served as State Department spokesperson under Donald Trump, and he declared in January that if she ran for Congress, she had his “complete and total endorsement.”
President Donald J. Trump:
"I am told the very strong and impressive Morgan Ortagus is exploring a run for Congress in Tennessee’s 5th Congressional District. I couldn’t be happier because she’s an absolute warrior for America First and MAGA! Morgan was fantastic in her… pic.twitter.com/BMqnFoBess
— Liz Harrington (@realLizUSA) January 26, 2022
Unfortunately for her, other Republican leaders don’t seem to agree.
According to the Tennessean, Ortagus and two other candidates were knocked off the primary ballot after challenges to their eligibility. In Ortagus’ case, it was due to living in the state for too brief a time to make newly-passed residency requirements, after moving in 2021.
However, NBC reported last month that leaders of the Republican Party in Tennessee were not throwing their support behind Ortagus, who they saw as an outsider who didn’t move to the district she hoped to represent, and didn’t seem to have bothered to learn anything about that district. Instead, they see her as someone that Trump is supporting only due to incomplete information from advisors.
Senator Frank Nicely (R-TN) led the effort to remove her, saying, “I’ll vote for Trump as long as he lives. But I don’t want him coming out here to tell me who to vote for.”
While Trump’s endorsement is typically a significant boost for any candidate, it seems that in Ortagus’ case, other Tennessee GOP leadership agrees.
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Steph Bazzle reports on social issues and religion for Hill Reporter. She focuses on stories that speak to everyone's right to practice what they believe in and receive the support of their communities and government officials. You can reach her at Steph@HillReporter.com