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Budd to run for Senate in NC

Budd to run for Senate in NC
© Greg Nash

Rep. Ted BuddTheodore (Ted) Paul BuddThe Hill's Morning Report - Biden to country: 'Turning peril into possibility' Budd to run for Senate in NC GOP senator introduces bill to make DC part of Maryland MORE (N.C.) is the latest Republican to enter the race to replace retiring Sen. Richard BurrRichard Mauze BurrGOP senator urges Biden to withdraw support for COVID vaccine patent waiver Utah county GOP censures Romney over Trump impeachment vote Battle lines drawn over Biden's support for vaccine waivers MORE (R) in an increasingly crowded Republican primary that could determine which party controls the next United States Senate.

In a video released Wednesday morning, Budd cast himself as an ally of former President TrumpDonald TrumpWarren says Republican party 'eating itself and it is discovering that the meal is poisonous' More than 75 Asian, LGBTQ groups oppose anti-Asian crime bill McConnell says he's 'great admirer' of Liz Cheney but mum on her removal MORE and against the Democratic agenda in Washington. 

“I’m a political outsider who can’t be bought by the swamp, and I don’t give a rip about their Washington games,” said Budd, who first won a seat in Congress in 2016. “I’ve shoveled a lot of manure on my family’s farm, and it’s not the dirtiest job I’ve ever had, now that I’ve been to Congress.”

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Budd’s video shows clips of praise from various Trump rallies in recent years, echoing other Republican Senate candidates who have sought to tie themselves to a defeated former president who remains broadly popular among the Republican primary electorate.

Budd’s campaign will be guided by Jonathan Felts and Michael Luethy, two North Carolina political strategists with decades of experience between them.

Budd won office in 2016 with the help of the Club for Growth, which spent almost $300,000 to help him through another crowded primary electorate. A member of the conservative House Freedom Caucus, Budd is likely to position himself to the right of former Gov. Pat McCrory (R), who entered the race last month.

Budd and McCrory also face former Rep. Mark WalkerBradley (Mark) Mark WalkerThe Hill's Morning Report - Biden to country: 'Turning peril into possibility' Budd to run for Senate in NC Former North Carolina chief justice launches Senate campaign MORE (R), who entered the race late last year. Lara TrumpLara TrumpThe Hill's Morning Report - Biden to country: 'Turning peril into possibility' Budd to run for Senate in NC Former North Carolina chief justice launches Senate campaign MORE, the former president’s daughter-in-law, is also said to be exploring a campaign. 

The winner will face the victor of an equally crowded Democratic primary field that grew on Tuesday when former state Supreme Court Chief Justice Cheri Beasley entered the race. Beasley will face state Sen. Jeff Jackson (D), former state Sen. Erica Smith (D) and a handful of lesser known candidates who have already said they will run.