In his ongoing campaign to handpick candidates and endorse them for office in the hope of creating a field of officials who will back his hoped-for presidency, Donald Trump has picked Tim Sheehy for the U.S. Senate from Montana. But the pick is troubling many of Trump’s own MAGA supporters, and may cause dissension in the Big Sky State.
Trump announced his endorsement of Sheehy for Montana on Feb. 9 in a post to his Truth Social account.
“I LOVE MONTANA!” Trump wrote to kick off his endorsement. “Tim Sheehy is an American Hero and highly successful Businessman from the Great State of Montana. He is strongly supported by our incredible Chairman of the NRSC, Steve Daines, and many other patriotic Senators and Republicans who have endorsed our Campaign to, MAKE AMERICA GREAT AGAIN!
“I also respect Matt Rosendale and was very happy to Endorse him in the past — and will Endorse him again in the future should he decide to change course and run for his Congressional Seat,” Trump added.
“But in this instance, Tim is the candidate who is currently best-positioned to DEFEAT Lazy Jon Tester, and Regain the Republican Majority in the United States Senate. Tim is a Political Outsider, Strong on the Border, the Military/Vets, and our constantly under siege Second Amendment. He will stand tall in the fight against the Radical Left Democrats, who are Destroying our Country. Also, he is far more likely to Defeat Lazy Jon,” Trump wrote.
“America First Patriot Tim Sheehy has my Complete and Total Endorsement!”
However, immediately after making the endorsement, many of Trump’s biggest supporters and many in Montana noted how disappointed they were with the pick. Republicans Congressman Matt Gaetz and Sen. Mike Lee were both discouraged by the endorsement.
For his part, Matt Rosendale, who is now a sitting congressman, posted the many endorsements he has received on X, and they are from some serious MAGA figures:
It is true that Sheehy seems to have a lot of things that would give a MAGA voter pause.
Last July, for instance, he quietly deleted all the support for environmental, social, and corporate governance, as well as climate change, from the website of Bridger Aerospace, the aerial firefighting company he owns, as ABC News reported last July.
The deletion came just as he was announcing his candidacy, and smacked of an attempt to obscure the fact that he was a supporter of these far-left ideas right up until the moment he launched his campaign for the Senate.
He has also suggested that American troops should be sent to fight against the Russians in Ukraine.
Indeed, he made a major flip-flop on his troops-to-Ukraine position. Once he was well into his race for the Senate, Sheehy floated a statement saying that the U.S. should stop financially supporting Ukraine and call for a cease-fire and peace talks between Russia and Ukraine. But this call stands in stark contrast to the social media posts he made a year before, where he suggested that he supported sending U.S. troops to Ukraine to stop Russian expansion, Jewish Insider reported.
Sheehy reportedly spent a lot of time deleting past social media posts that would imperil his run for Senate.
Finally, Sheehy also has one more very concerning thing about his candidacy; he is backed by Sen. Mitch McConnell and the GOP establishment in Washington, D.C. This fact also puts Trump’s endorsement at odds with his own MAGA base.
On the other hand, Matt Rosendale has been a thorn in the side of the GOP establishment since day one, and he is exactly the sort of man MAGA voters can trust.
Some recent polling also seems to show that Rosendale leads Sheehy in a head-to-head race against Democrat Jon Tester, so Trump’s endorsement might seem to be an odd choice to make. Still, it is early in Montana and many are only just starting to pay attention to the race for 2024.
Regardless, Trump’s choice seems a bit out of character for the MAGA movement.
A Note from Our Deputy Managing Editor: