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Trump takes revenge on Rep. Bob Good after he endorsed Ron DeSantis

Trump on Tuesday endorsed Virginia state Sen. John McGuire, who is running in the June 18 primary against Good, chair of the House Freedom Caucus and a Ron DeSantis endorser.

Former President Donald Trump endorsed the primary challenger taking on House Freedom Caucus Chairman Bob Good, R-Va., saying the congressman “turned his back on our incredible movement.”

Trump posted on his social media platform Truth Social on Tuesday morning that he is endorsing state Sen. John McGuire, who is challenging Good in a June 18 primary. Trump made a veiled reference to Good’s being one of the few members of Congress who endorsed Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis in the presidential primary, writing that Good “was constantly attacking and fighting me until recently.”

Good endorsed Trump back in January, but the former president wrote that it was “too late.”

“The damage had been done!” Trump added. “I just want to MAKE AMERICA GREAT AGAIN, and the person that can most help me do that is Navy Seal and highly respected State Legislator, John McGuire, a true American Hero.”

State Sen. John McGuire attends a rally on Jan. 16, 2023, at Capitol Square in Richmond, Va.
State Sen. John McGuire attends a rally at Capitol Square in Richmond, Va., on Jan. 16, 2023.John C. Clark / AP file

Good’s campaign website currently suggests Trump is backing him, with Trump included in a section titled, “Who’s supporting Bob” — but listing Trump’s endorsement from 2022.

McGuire welcomed Trump’s endorsement, thanking the former president in a post on X and writing, “We can do better than Good.”

Both McGuire and Good appeared to be angling for Trump’s backing in recent days, with both men traveling to New York City earlier this month to support Trump amid his ongoing trial in a hush money case.

Trump’s endorsement is coveted in GOP primaries, with the Republican base fiercely loyal to the former president. But some lawmakers have overcome Trump challengers in the past, including Rep. Dan Newhouse of Washington state, who is once again facing a Trump-backed challenger, and Rep. Nancy Mace of South Carolina, who has Trump’s support this year. Good himself ousted former GOP Rep. Denver Riggleman in 2020, even though Riggleman had Trump’s backing in the race.

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Riggleman went on to work as an adviser to the House committee investigating the Jan. 6, 2021, Capitol riot and Trump’s role in the event.

The primary in Virginia’s 5th Congressional District, a deep-red seat that includes Charlottesville and stretches to the state’s southern border, has attracted plenty of outside spending. Republican groups have spent nearly $10.7 million on ads in the race, according to the ad tracking firm AdImpact. Good has also drawn the ire of fellow Republicans after voting to oust former House Speaker Kevin McCarthy last year.

In a statement to NBC News on Tuesday night, Good defended his record and took a swipe at McGuire.

“I have never been the choice of political power brokers in Washington,” Good said, adding that his constituents “understand and appreciate that I have fought for them during my 3 years in Washington.”

“My opponent does not have an America-first conservative record in the General Assembly. That is why he is supported by the RINO moderate establishment wing of the Republican Party. And it is why he is funded by allies of the former Speaker who is directing the dark super PAC money in support of his campaign,” Good added.

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