Former President Donald Trump has yanked his endorsement from Alabama Senate hopeful Mo Brooks, promising to make a new endorsement in the race before the May 24 primary.
“Mo Brooks of Alabama made a horrible mistake recently when he went ‘woke’ and stated, referring to the 2020 Presidential Election Scam, ‘Put that behind you, put that behind you,’” Trump said in a statement on Wednesday.
Trump’s stunning decision to untether himself from a candidate who became the first Republican congressman to vote against certifying the 2020 election results on January 6, 2021, comes amid several dismissive comments that Brooks recently made about the election. Brooks was booed at a rally last August upon telling the crowd they should look beyond the last presidential contest. And in the last two weeks, he has publicly accused Trump of asking him to break the law by exploring ways to reinstall him as commander in chief.
“President Trump asked me to rescind the 2020 elections, immediately remove Joe Biden from the White House, immediately put President Trump back in the White House, and hold a new special election for the presidency. As a lawyer, I’ve repeatedly advised President Trump that January 6 was the final election contest verdict and neither the U.S. Constitution nor the U.S. Code permit what President Trump asks. Period,” Brooks continued.
Brooks later Wednesday told CNN that the former President had asked him to be a part of an effort to rescind the 2020 election in conversations that happened after September 1, 2021, “and multiple times.”
When asked if he would be willing to cooperate with the House select committee investigating the January 6, 2021, insurrection at the US Capitol he responded, “Have given it no thought.”
The committee has not asked Brooks for an interview or to hand over documents related to its investigation. A committee spokesperson declined to comment.
In his response to Trump’s reversal, Brooks accused Trump of letting “Mitch McConnell manipulate him,” claiming the Senate Minority Leader and his allies have been plotting against him since the outset of his campaign.
“Every single negative TV ad against our campaign has come from McConnell and his allies. I wish President Trump wouldn’t fall for McConnell’s ploys, but, once again, he has,” Brooks said.
Further defending himself after Trump claimed that he had gone “woke” on the 2020 election, Brooks trumpeted himself as “the only proven America First candidate” in the race for retiring Sen. Richard Shelby’s seat and “the only candidate who fought voter fraud and election theft when it counted, between November 3 and January 6.”
Though Trump has vowed to issue a different endorsement before the May 24 primary, Brooks does not seem inclined to exit the race. A source close to the congressman said he will stay despite Trump’s decision.
“There’s only one conservative option in this race, and I am confident that the people of Alabama will see that on Election Day,” he said.
The group Club for Growth PAC, a major ally of Brooks, also refused to join Trump in withdrawing its support. In its own statement, the group’s president David McIntosh said Brooks “is the only principled, pro-growth conservative in the race.”
Trump met with Army veteran Mike Durant at Mar-a-Lago on Monday to discuss the race and get a better feel for the candidate, according to a person familiar with the meeting. He had previously told aides he is skeptical of Durant, who received a major boost in the race in the form of spending by More Perfect Union, an outside group that has committed to supporting moderate candidates in red and blue races.
Trump also met with former Alabama Business Council president Katie Britt earlier this year amid his frustrations over Brooks’ lackluster performance. As CNN has previously reported, Trump has told allies he’s impressed with Britt’s fundraising and has taken a liking to her husband, Wesley Britt, who played for the New England Patriots.
Britt served as chief of staff to retiring Shelby.
CNN’s Ryan Nobles, Melanie Zanona, David Wright and Alex Rogers contributed to this story.