In weekend political news a lot of people outside Alabama probably missed, Donald Trump administered the coup de grace to the Senate aspirations of his old friend and fierce defender of his 2020 election fables Representative Mo Brooks. Having withdrawn his endorsement of Brooks in March, apparently because the old reactionary was running a sluggish campaign, the ex-president has now endorsed runoff foe Katie Britt, widely thought of as the candidate of the Republican Establishment in Washington and in Alabama. This blow was especially cruel since Brooks (who calls himself “MAGA Mo” despite Trump’s disrespect) disproved the loser label by soundly defeating onetime front-runner Mike Durant and making a June 21 runoff opposite Britt without Trump’s help.
In his final betrayal of Brooks, Trump repeated the ludicrous claim he made in de-endorsing him earlier:
Out of nowhere, and for seemingly no reason, Mo backtracked and made a big mistake by going Woke at our massive Cullman, Alabama Rally. Instead of denouncing the Voter Fraud in the Election, Mo lectured the crowd of 63,000 people saying, “Put that behind you, put that behind you,” meaning that, in effect, forget the Rigged Election and go on to the future.
Brooks, who led the fight to decertify Biden’s victory in Congress on January 6, 2021, and spoke at Trump’s wild “Stop the Steal” rally that day, had the temerity to suggest that after Biden’s inauguration there was no constitutional way to remove him from office and reinstall Trump. This annoyed some people, including Trump itself, at the Alabama rally. But Brooks is about as “Woke” as Trump is a modest truth-teller.
The ex-president also defended Britt against Brooks’s charge that she is the stooge of Mitch McConnell, repeating a competing claim that the the Senate minority leader had backed Durant. But it’s indisputable that McConnell’s Senate Leadership PAC has spent millions on Britt’s runoff campaign, likely at the urging of her former boss, retiring Senator Richard Shelby. Britt is also the favorite of Alabama’s corporate sector; she was most recently head of its lobbying association, the Alabama Business Council.
Other than a perverse desire to humiliate Brooks, Trump’s motivation in backing Britt was probably mercenary: He’s protecting a perfect record so far in 2022 Senate primaries. The first big poll of the runoff campaign last week showed Britt leading Brooks by a 55-to-36 margin; she has the financial and organization advantages to win even bigger than that. Count Mo Brooks as just the latest pol to realize that Donald Trump’s sense of loyalty is not reciprocal.