AP Photo/Manuel Balce Ceneta, File
- Joe Walsh, a former Tea Party congressman and current conservative radio personality, is planning to challenge President Donald Trump for the 2020 Republican nomination, according to a New York Times report.
- The Republican base, however, may not be receptive to a GOP challenger to Trump. An August Gallup survey found that 88% approve of Trump’s performance.
- Walsh regularly courted controversy during his short tenure in Congress and continues to make waves as a conservative radio host.
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Joe Walsh, a former Tea Party congressman and current conservative radio personality, is planning to challenge President Donald Trump for the 2020 Republican nomination, according to a New York Times report. His announcement may come as soon as this weekend.
Walsh recently emerged as a critic of the president, though he initially tweeted his support for then-candidate Trump during the 2016 election. "On November 8th, I’m voting for Trump," Walsh tweeted in 2016. "On November 9th, if Trump loses, I’m grabbing my musket. You in?"
However, last week he wrote a New York Times op-ed saying, "In Mr. Trump, I see the worst and ugliest iteration of views I expressed for the better part of a decade." He told CNN the next day that Trump was "unfit to be president."
The Republican base, however, may not be receptive to a GOP challenger to Trump. An August Gallup survey found that 88% of Trump’s performance.
The former representative from Illinois is not the only Republican running in 2020. Former Massachusetts Governor Bill Weld announced his candidacy in April of 2019, and others may join him in what Vanity Fair called the "GOP Suicide Squad" in a Wednesday article.
Walsh, who served one term in Congress from 2011 to 2013, rode in on the Tea Party wave in 2010. He was succeeded by now-Sen. Tammy Duckworth, a Democrat and a veteran.
During his short congressional tenure, Walsh was somewhat of a contentious figure. He declined to take congressional health care benefits as a protest to the Affordable Care Act. He was also filmed swearing at a constituent at a 2011 event.
Controversy followed even after he left Congress. Last year he said he was "duped" by comedian Sacha Baron Cohen’s "Who is America?" show into supporting a fake proposal to arm kinder gardeners to stop shootings in schools.
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