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Blankenship: I’m Trumpier than Trump

Blankenship: I’m Trumpier than Trump
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Don Blankenship said on Monday that he is “Trumpier than Trump” in response to a tweet from the president urging West Virginians to support the GOP Senate candidate's primary opponents.

"As some have said I am Trumpier than Trump, and this morning proves it,” Blankenship, a former mining CEO, said in a statement responding to a tweet from Trump.

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"The President is a very busy man and he doesn’t know me, and he doesn’t know how flawed my two main opponents are in this primary," Blankenship said. "The establishment is misinforming him because they do not want me to be in the U.S. Senate and promote the President’s agenda." 

Blankenship also said he had resurrected the GOP in West Virginia.

"West Virginia voters should remember that my enemies are Barack ObamaBarack Hussein ObamaBiden-Harris team unveils inauguration playlist Can the GOP break its addiction to show biz? The challenge of Biden's first days: staying focused and on message MORE and Hillary ClintonHillary Diane Rodham ClintonRep. John Katko: Why I became the first Republican lawmaker to support impeachment Can we protect our country — from our rulers, and ourselves? For Joe Biden, an experienced foreign policy team MORE and my opponents would not even be running as Republicans had I not resurrected the Republican Party in West Virginia," he said.

Trump tweeted on Monday that West Virginians should support either West Virginia Attorney General Patrick Morrisey or Rep. Evan JenkinsEvan Hollin JenkinsWest Virginia New Members 2019 Republican Carol Miller holds off Democrat in West Virginia House race Trump to fundraise for 3 Republicans running for open seats: report MORE in the GOP primary over Blankenship, a former coal executive who was convicted of violating mine safety and health standards. 

Republicans fear that if Blankenship won the primary, he would almost certainly lose to Sen. Joe ManchinJoseph (Joe) ManchinBiden tax-hike proposals face bumpy road ahead Senate Democrats leery of nixing filibuster Manchin: Removing Hawley, Cruz with 14th Amendment 'should be a consideration' MORE (D-W.Va.) in November. They also think he could cause collateral damage on other GOP candidates.

Blankenship, who was in prison for a year after his conviction, has been surging in recent polling.

The Republican establishment has responded by fiercely pushing against his nomination. 

Republicans fear that Blankenship’s nomination could be a repeat of last year’s Alabama special election where Roy MooreRoy Stewart MooreAlabama zeroes in on Richard Shelby's future Long-shot Espy campaign sees national boost in weeks before election Ocasio-Cortez slams Tulsi Gabbard for amplifying ballot harvesting video MORE beat the more moderate Luther StrangeLuther Johnson StrangeAlabama zeroes in on Richard Shelby's future Sessions hits back at Trump days ahead of Alabama Senate runoff The biggest political upsets of the decade MORE for the Republican nomination only to be beaten by the Democratic candidate Doug Jones after allegations broke that Moore had engaged in sexual encounters with underage women.

The West Virginia primary will take place on Tuesday.