Trump endorses House primary challenger actively pushing 2020 election lies

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Washington state congressional candidate Joe Kent says he will work to impeach Joe Biden and Kamala Harris if elected.

Former President Donald Trump has endorsed the congressional campaign of Joe Kent, who has falsely claimed that a "cabal" of unnamed figures "manipulated" the results of the 2020 presidential election in favor of President Joe Biden.

Kent is challenging incumbent Rep. Jaime Herrera Beutler in the Republican primary in Washington's 3rd Congressional District. Herrera Beutler was one of only 10 House Republicans who voted with the majority in January to impeach Trump on charges of inciting the Jan. 6 attack by his supporters on the U.S. Capitol.

Herrera Beutler won reelection in 2020 by 13 percentage points. In 2020, the Cook Political Report rated the seat "lean Republican." There are three other Republicans running for the party's nomination, while two Democrats have officially declared their candidacy for the seat.

A June 5-7 poll conducted by the Trafalgar Group, a Republican pollster, found Kent polling in second place to Herrera Beutler in the primary race. The incumbent received 30% support to Kent's 23%. Kent is 10 points ahead of the next closest challenger.

On Wednesday Trump endorsed Kent's campaign, stating that Kent is "running against RINO and incompetent Congresswoman Jaime Herrera Beutler. ... In Congress, Joe will be a warrior for the America First agenda, unlike Jaime Herrera Beutler who voted, despite the facts, against the Republican Party and for the Democrats' Impeachment Scam."

"Thank you very much President Trump! I'm honored & ready to take our country back!" Kent wrote in a tweet sharing the endorsement.

Kent has also been endorsed by Donald Trump Jr. and by Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-FL), with whom he is scheduled to hold a fundraiser on Sept. 6.

Since launching his congressional campaign, Kent has repeatedly endorsed and promoted false election conspiracy theories and cited them as a key factor motivating his campaign.

In the launch video for his congressional campaign, posted to YouTube on Mar. 25, Kent invoked falsehoods about the election and the second impeachment of Trump: "The events of 2020, including the lockdowns, riots, and a presidential election manipulated by a cabal of technocrats and bureaucrats followed by a sham impeachment, a sham impeachment that our congresswoman voted for, made it clear to me that I had to go forward and fight once more."

 

Kent made similar false claims in a July 10 interview with the conservative Right Side Broadcasting Network as he described what he would do if elected to Congress:

First thing I want to do is take all the information, all the data that's being gathered from these audits, when we get into Congress in '22, lay it out for the American people, subpoena witnesses, subpoena evidences, have a full accounting for the presidential election of 2020 so that we can give the states enough information to pass their own voter integrity laws. And from there, when we lay all that evidence out, we submit impeachment papers for Joe Biden and Kamala Harris and we take our country back that way, because we can't just let this election be stolen from the American people.

 

In a Feb. 17 post on Facebook announcing his candidacy, Kent complained that conservatives and Trump supporters were being "labeled as terrorists and targeted by social media, corporate America, and the mainstream media for the alleged crime of supporting President Trump and asking fair questions about widespread election irregularities."

Trump lost the election to Biden both in the popular vote and in the Electoral College. Official recounts and audits of the vote conducted in several states have failed to change that fact.

Published with permission of The American Independent Foundation.