Trump in a statement issued hours earlier called Sanders a “warrior” who will “always fight for the people of Arkansas.” He added that Sanders is willing to do “what is right, not what is politically correct.”
“Sarah is strong on borders, tough on crime and fully supports the second amendment and our great law enforcement officers,” Trump said. “She loves our military and veterans — and her home state of Arkansas. She will be a GREAT Governor and she has my complete and total endorsement.”
Sanders, a Republican, formally announced her intention to run for governor in a video message Monday morning, promising to mirror Trump’s policies and take on “the radical left.”
“I took on the media, the radical left and their cancel culture, and I won,” the former press secretary said. “As governor, I will be your voice and never let them silence you.”
Some critics took exception with a dig at the media, including CNN’s Jim Acosta, who covered the White House while Sanders was press secretary and said
her campaign for governor would be “gaslit.”
Sanders, whose father, Mike Huckabee, served as governor of Arkansas, joins an increasingly crowded Republican primary field in a deeply red state that includes the state’s lieutenant governor and attorney general. The state’s current Republican governor, Asa Hutchinson, has reached his term limit of eight years in office.
“Today @SarahHuckabee just announced she’s running to be 1st woman Governor of AR,” Mike Huckabee said in a tweet of his own on Monday. “But it’s not about her gender, but a lifetime of preparation. She’s smart & compassionate, but fearless for what’s right.”
Trump has not spoken about any definite plans for his own political future, saying only “we’ll be back in some form” in his last public remarks as president.