Former Attorney General Jeff Sessions plans to run for his old Senate seat in Alabama, The Hill reports.
A source told The Hill that Sessions would “come out forcefully in support of [President] Trump’s agenda while denouncing Democrats’ impeachment efforts. And steps have already begun to hire campaign staff.”
Sessions is expected to formally announce his candidacy on Thursday in an appearance on Fox News.
The deadline to file for Senate in Alabama is on Friday.
Sessions held the seat from 1997 to 2017, when he was tapped as Trump’s attorney general. Sessions, the first senator to endorse Trump, ultimately fell out of favor with Trump after recusing himself from the Russia probe and was forced out of the administration.
Trump threatens to derail Sessions:
Trump is already threatening to derail Sessions’ campaign after publicly criticizing him repeatedly.
“Over the last week, Mr. Trump sent word to Mr. Sessions through allies that he would publicly attack him if he ran,” The New York Times reported. “And Mr. McConnell recently approached Mr. Trump, asking him whether his feelings about Mr. Sessions might have improved. The president said he was very much still opposed to Mr. Sessions and would make that clear if he had to, according to a person briefed on the discussions.”
Republicans thought that the message was clear but Sessions ultimately decided to run anyway.
Republicans not happy about Sessions’ run:
Sessions’ decision “startled and dismayed national Republicans,” The Times reported, noting that they worried his candidacy would draw Trump’s ire.
Republicans nominated Roy Moore in the last election and he became the first Republican to lose the state in decades after he was accused of being a serial child predator.
Moore is running again in 2020, as are Rep. Bradley Byrne, former Auburn football coach Tommy Tuberville, Alabama Secretary of State John Merrill, businessman Stanley Adair, and state Rep. Arnold Mooney.
“I think it would be a mistake for him and really bad for the state given the president’s extreme displeasure with him. Alabama is very pro-Trump,” Byrne told The Hill.