Sam Brown on the campaign trail in 2022. (Photo by Josh Edelson/Getty Images)
In a Republican U.S. Senate primary debate in Nevada last year, Adam Laxalt repeatedly would not answer whether, if elected, he would vote for Mitch McConnell to continue as leader of Senate Republicans.
Laxalt’s opponent in that primary, Sam Brown, didn’t answer the question either, but said he had a “feeling that Mr. Laxalt owes Mitch McConnell his vote because he’s endorsed his campaign.”
Now it appears Brown is counting on McConnell to endorse Brown’s campaign.
As expected, Brown, who lost that primary to Adam Laxalt last year, announced Monday that he will again run for U.S. Senate, this time to challenge Democratic Sen. Jacky Rosen.
And the National Republican Senatorial Committee, the campaign fundraising arm for the still McConnell-led Senate Republicans, immediately signaled a preference for Brown over the other prominent announced candidate, Jim Marchant.
“I am very pleased that Sam is stepping up to run for the U.S. Senate,” said Montana Republican Sen. Steve Daines, the chairman of the NRSC this cycle, in a statement Monday.
The NRSC has been telegraphing its preference for Brown over Marchant for weeks. Marchant campaigned for Nevada secretary of state last year largely on wild conspiracy theories regarding elections.
Brown last year during that debate took Laxalt to task for not doing enough to challenge Joe Biden’s victory of Donald Trump in the 2020 presidential election in Nevada.
The NRSC’s was far from the only reaction to Brown’s candidacy Monday. Declaring “NV GOP primary gets messier,” the Nevada State Democratic Party in a statement said “With the entrance of Mitch McConnell’s handpicked candidate Sam Brown, Republicans are in for a brutal and messy primary that will expose their deeply flawed candidates as out of touch with hardworking Nevadans.”
And the state Democratic Party’s wasn’t the only campaign statement warning of messy primaries Monday.
In a statement separate from the one welcoming Brown to the race, the NRSC cited primaries in Florida, Michigan, Missouri, and Texas, and declared “Democrat Senate primaries across the map just keep getting messier.”
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