Ah yes, the coveted Donald Trump endorsement. Several years ago, no one could have ever dreamed that a U.S. president who lost a reelection campaign (and spurred on an insurrection) would inspire such a far-right frenzy to nab his approval, but we’ve never seen anything quite like MAGA devotion. However, all Trump touches does not turn to (gaudy) gold. The streak (a 55-0 one) is finally broken with the loss of a Kentucky gubernatorial candidate who Trump persisted in supporting despite sexual harassment allegations from several women.
This news does not bode well for Dr. Oz (whose Trump endorsement actually inspired a MAGA mutiny) or J.D. Vance (who Trump reportedly endorsed after Tucker Carlson passed on word of a rival’s “disgusting” sex life) or Lauren Boebert (who Trump endorsed the day after her House rebuke for a string of Islamophobic remarks). What happened in Kentucky, though? The Trump-endorsed Charles Herbster got defeated in the GOP primary by Jim Pillen (a vet and “hog producer”), even after Trump decided to keep endorsing Herbster despite the red flags of eight women who alleged that Herbster either groped or forcibly kissed them at political events. Via Mediaite, Trump addressed those accusations and defended his guy:
Trump endorsed Herbster last year, before the allegations surfaced. Nevertheless, Trump held a rally for the businessman earlier this month and defended his pick.
“He’s been maligned, he’s been maligned, he’s been badly maligned and that’s a shame,” Trump said. “That’s why I came out here it would have been easier for me to say I’m not coming out but I defend people when I know they’re good. He’s a good man.”
And thus, an endorsement streak is no more, even after Herbster demonstrated the ultimate loyalty (as revealed in the above campaign billboard) of adding a “Trump won” (obviously, he did not win) to his campaign paraphernalia. So watch out, Dr. Oz. And the same may even go for the Trump-endorsed Marco Rubio, who must be sweating like crazy against a real contender of a Senate rival, Val Demings in Florida.