In the wake of Republican Rep. Anthony Gonzalez's decision to retire, former president Donald Trump is doubling down in support of a former aide with a dark criminal past who's running for the Ohio congressional seat in 2022.
In a statement Friday morning, Trump attacked Gonzalez, who called the former president a "cancer for the country" after opting not to seek re-election.
"RINO Congressman Anthony Gonzalez, who has poorly represented his district in the Great State of Ohio, has decided to quit after enduring a tremendous loss of popularity, of which he had little, since his ill-informed and otherwise very stupid impeachment vote against the sitting President of the United States, me," Trump said in the statement from his Save America PAC.
Trump then proceeded to reiterate his endorsement of GOP candidate Max Miller, who has been described as a "poster child" for the former president's impeachment revenge tour, and has a dark history marred by allegations of anger problems, assaulting women, drunken driving, and other offenses.
"This is no loss for Ohio or our Country and, most importantly, we have a great candidate who was substantially leading Gonzalez in the polls, Max Miller, who I have given my Complete and Total Endorsement," Trump said in his statement. "Max is a tremendous person who will represent Ohio well."
Politico reported in July that Miller's romantic relationship with former White House press secretary Stephanie Grisham ended last year after he "pushed her against a wall and slapped her in the face in his Washington apartment after she accused him of cheating on her," according to people familiar with the incident.
Through an attorney, Miller denied the allegations, but it wasn't the first time he's been accused of assaulting someone of the opposite sex.
"Ranging from people who grew up with Miller in the affluent Cleveland inner suburb of Shaker Heights to those he worked with and for in the White House and on Trump's campaigns—some of whom were granted anonymity because they fear retaliation from Miller, Trump or both—these people told me Miller can be a cocky bully with a quick-trigger temper," Politico reported. "He has a record of speeding, underage drinking and disorderly conduct—documented charges from multiple jurisdictions that include a previously unreported charge in 2011 for driving under the influence that he subsequently pleaded down to a more minor offense."
In high school, "Miller pushed a girl out the door of his room and she fell down some stairs after he became enraged when she resisted his attempts to touch her, according to three people who were there and many more who heard about the incident in the aftermath," according to Politico.
In 2010, Miller needed surgery — with a tourniquet applied to his arm by a responding officer — after he punched through a glass door during an argument outside a hookah bar. In 2011, he was arrested on suspicion of drunken driving after he crashed his car into a light pole at Miami University — at 8:55 in the morning. Miller told a responding officer he'd had "two to three beers and several shots" the night before and "woke up in urine-soaked pants," according to a report.