Republicans can mess up the Alabama Senate race in one easy step: Trump

According to a report from Politico, Republican office-seekers going hat in hand to Donald Trump for his endorsement need to watch how they bandy about his name as they seek higher office lest they blow a chance for his support.

Case in point, one Alabama Republican looks to have blown her chance to get the nod from Trump for a U.S. Senate run because she overstated her closeness to the ex-president and was telling friends she already had his endorsement in the bag.

As Politico's Gabby Orr and Meredith McGraw report, "Lynda Blanchard's fledgling campaign to succeed retiring Alabama GOP Sen. Richard Shelby seemed to be progressing smoothly as she mingled with donors inside Mar-a-Lago's gilded ballroom last Saturday," but then things changed rapidly even though Trump made an appearance.

"But within days, Blanchard's effort to position herself as the Trump-approved candidate in the race was thrown into jeopardy as it became clear that the 45th president was leaning toward supporting Rep. Mo Brooks (R-Ala.) in the GOP primary for Shelby's seat," the report continues with Brooks expected to soon announce his candidacy for the seat with a Trump endorsement to follow.

So what happened?

According to the report, "What likely sealed Blanchard's fate, according to four people familiar with the matter, was the moment they said her team broke a cardinal rule in Trump World: they exaggerated just how much of a Trump insider she truly is."

According to one Trump confidant, "The president doesn't know Lynda all that well and it had gotten back to him and his team that people on her team had been overstating how close they supposedly are. One of her aides was telling any donor who would listen that Trump was going to endorse her and that left him annoyed."

"They were totally overstating the relationship between Lynda and him," another Trump insider chimed in.

According to the report, Blanchard is not the only candidate having to tip-toe through a minefield for a coveted Trump endorsement, with every comment they have previously made scrutinized for signs of disloyalty to the ex-president or even some of his close allies.

"Two of the sources familiar with Trump's thinking said he was urged to slow down his Senate endorsements after throwing his weight behind Kansas Sen. Jerry Moran, a frequent critic of Trump's trade policies and one of a handful of Republican senators who voted against his attempt to use emergency presidential powers in the spring of 2019 to construct his new long-promised border wall," the rerport states. "One of those sources said that when he was walked through the contradictions of the Moran endorsement, Trump's revulsion to even minor instances of disloyalty only intensified. As an example, they noted that Trump is currently withholding an endorsement of Indiana Sen. Todd Young after Young called Georgia Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene 'an embarrassment to the Republican party last month."

You can read more here.