Former Rep. Joe Walsh to Challenge Donald Trump in GOP Primary

August 25, 2019

Former Rep. Joe Walsh announced Sunday that he is running for president.  A Tea Party Republican, Walsh served one term in the House, winning the Illinois 8th district in 2010. The district became more favorable to Democrats after 2011 redistricting and Walsh lost to Tammy Duckworth in 2012. After leaving Congress, Walsh became a conservative talk radio personality.

Walsh is hoping a challenge from the right will appeal to both conservatives and the 'Never Trump' movement. However, he brings his own baggage to the race, which might make it difficult for him to credibly make the case to those looking for an alternativ. He has espoused birtherism and anti-Muslim rhetoric, as well as hate for his political opponents. He did express regret for those statements in a recent New York Times op-ed.

Walsh joins former Massachusetts Gov. William Weld in the primary; both face exceptionally steep odds in their quest for the GOP nomination. For his part, Weld said he welcomes others, telling Chuck Todd on Meet the Press that "we need to assemble rational people".

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