(Gray News) - Republican Joe Walsh announced Friday on Twitter he is suspending his GOP presidential challenge to President Donald Trump, saying in part “our fight against the Cult of Trump is just getting started.”
The former congressman from Illinois denounced the Republican Party as a cult. “No one, no matter his or her profile, can defeat Donald Trump in a Republican Primary. This was confirmed for me firsthand last week in Iowa when I was booed off the stage by primary voters, when I said we should expect decency and honesty from our president. This is not my party,” he said.
Walsh said he’s going to work to elect Democrats who come closest to sharing his values and urged other Republicans to do the same.
“This may not be comfortable. It may not be our most natural environment. But it is our only chance at taking our party back. It is our only chance at taking our country back,” he said.
Walsh joined the U.S. House of Representatives in 2010 on a Tea Party surge, only to lose to Tammy Duckworth in the next election.
He became a conservative radio talk show host in 2013 and supported Trump’s campaign for president in 2016, going as far as saying he’d “grab his musket” if Trump lost.
Walsh explained to New York Magazine that Trump “lost” him with his Helsinki press conference alongside Russian President Vladimir Putin in 2018, in which he accepted the Russian leader’s assertion that his country did not meddle in the 2016 elections.