Trump blasts GOP Sen. Pat Toomey
Former President Trump hammered Sen. Pat Toomey (R-Pa.) on Tuesday, calling him a “terrible representative for both Pennsylvania and the United States” while doubling down on his support for Republican Sean Parnell in the race to replace Toomey next year.
Toomey is one of seven Senate Republicans who voted to convict Trump in his second impeachment trial earlier this year for inciting a mob to attack the Capitol.
Trump has repeatedly gone after Republicans who broke with him on impeachment, and earlier Tuesday endorsed a primary opponent of Rep. Fred Upton, a Michigan Republican who voted to impeach Trump.
In a statement, Trump blasted Toomey, who announced his retirement plans nearly a year ago, claiming that the outgoing Pennsylvania Republican had decided not to run for reelection because Trump “would not give him an endorsement.”
He also criticized the Republican senator’s stances on tariffs and trade — Toomey has been vocally anti-tax and anti-regulation — calling his views “archaic.”
“He ran with me in 2016 and wasn’t expected to win, but because of my victory he did,” Trump said. “He still doesn’t realize what happened, and why – not the sharpest tool in the shed.”
In fact, Toomey outperformed Trump the last time the two were on the ballot together in 2016, winning reelection by about 1.5 percentage points. Trump carried Pennsylvania the same year by about half that margin.
In announcing his retirement plans last year, Toomey said his reasons were “personal, not political,” and noted that he had often mentioned serving only two terms in the Senate. The Pennsylvania Republican was first elected to Congress in 1998, serving three terms in the House. He won his Senate seat in 2010.
Trump’s latest attack on Toomey came days after the former president endorsed Parnell in the GOP primary to replace the Pennsylvania senator next year. He doubled down on that endorsement on Tuesday, saying that Parnell “will do all of the things that Toomey is incapable of doing.”
“Sean Parnell will represent the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania the way it should be represented – and it’s about time!” Trump said.
The Pennsylvania Senate race is shaping up to be among the most competitive of the 2022 election cycle, giving Democrats an opportunity to flip a key GOP-held Senate seat at a time when they’re hoping to expand their ultra-narrow majority in the upper chamber.
Trump lost Pennsylvania in the 2020 presidential election after carrying it in 2016. Despite that loss, Republicans like Parnell are counting on the former president to maintain control of Toomey’s seat next year.
–Updated at 7:41 p.m.