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 FlakeAuthorizing military force is necessary, but insufficient Republicans jockey for position on immigration McCain, Flake warn against 'politically-motivated penalties' for Canadian defense firm 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 McCainRubio asks Army to kick out West Point grad with pro-communist posts The VA's woes cannot be pinned on any singular administration Overnight Defense: Mattis offers support for Iran deal | McCain blocks nominees over Afghanistan strategy | Trump, Tillerson spilt raises new questions about N. Korea policy 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 McConnellGun proposal picks up GOP support Children’s health-care bill faces new obstacles Dems see Trump as potential ally on gun reform MORE (R-Ky.).

Hannity also endorsed Rep. Mo BrooksMorris (Mo) Jackson BrooksWhatever you think the Alabama special election means, you’re probably wrong GOP lawmaker pushes to end sports leagues' tax-exempt status Rep. Mo Brooks: We should end federal government support to NFL 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.