Hannity backs Kelli Ward in primary against Flake

Hannity backs Kelli Ward in primary against Flake
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Fox News host Sean Hannity has endorsed former Arizona state Sen. Kelli Ward (R) in her primary bid to unseat Sen. Jeff FlakeJeffrey (Jeff) Lane FlakeKelly lobbied Republicans to rebuke Trump after Putin press conference: report Senate weighs new Russia response amid Trump backlash Flake to Trump: 'Fake news' didn't side with Putin, you did MORE (R-Ariz.).

A reporter for U.S. News & World Report first broke the news on Wednesday, saying Ward told the crowd at an event in Sun Lakes that Hannity voiced his support as they were taping a radio interview. 

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"I warmly offer you my endorsement and my support," Hannity reportedly said on his radio program.

Hannity called Ward's challenge to Flake "a race she can win.”

“But I’m throwing my support early behind you,” he added.

Ward, who unsuccessfully ran against Sen. John McCainJohn Sidney McCainPence, Pompeo urged Trump to clarify Russia remarks: report GOP lawmaker renews call for Trump to release tax returns after Putin summit House conservatives criticize media, not Trump, for Putin furor MORE (R-Ariz.) last year, has based her platform on being a staunch ally of President Trump, as Flake has recently ramped up criticism of the commander-in-chief.

Trump has repeatedly ripped both Flake and McCain, tweeting Wednesday that Arizona's junior senator is "weak on crime."

And last week, he offered up praise for Ward:

Trump has yet to explicitly endorse Ward, while Flake has enjoyed the support of the super PAC allied with Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnellAddison (Mitch) Mitchell McConnellOvernight Defense: Trump tries to quell Russia furor | GOP looks to reassure NATO | Mattis open to meeting Russian counterpart Senate weighs new Russia response amid Trump backlash House passes bipartisan bill to boost business investment MORE (R-Ky.).

Hannity also endorsed Rep. Mo BrooksMorris (Mo) Jackson BrooksLatino groups intervene in Alabama census lawsuit Alabama GOP congressman preps possible Senate bid against Doug Jones Loyalty to Donald Trump is new normal for the Republican Party MORE (R-Ala.) in the Alabama Senate special election, though Brooks later failed to advance to the September primary runoff.

—Updated at 4:33 p.m.