Mark McCloskey, the Missouri lawyer who was seen pointing an assault rifle at Black Lives Matter protesters in St. Louis last year, launched a campaign in the Show Me State’s open Senate race on Tuesday.
He is expected to formally announce his campaign on Tucker CarlsonTucker CarlsonStrange bedfellows: UFOs are uniting Trump’s fiercest critics, loyalists Overnight Health Care: Biden announces 1M have enrolled in special ObamaCare sign-up period | Rand Paul clashes with Fauci over coronavirus origins | Biden vows to get ‘more aggressive’ on lifestyle benefits of vaccines McCarthy rental from Luntz violated condo rules: Washington Post MORE’s Fox News show Tuesday evening.
McCloskey and his wife, Patricia, rose to national prominence in 2020 after video of them waving their guns at protesters outside their St. Louis mansion went viral. The two were indicted on charges of unlawful use of a weapon and evidence tampering but became a cause célèbre for Republicans, who have raised them up as an example of what they say is a use of firearms in self-defense.
The couple later spoke at last year’s Republican National Convention and even drew support from then-President TrumpDonald TrumpGOP-led Maricopa County board decries election recount a ‘sham’ Analysis: Arpaio immigration patrol lawsuit to cost Arizona county at least 2 million Conservatives launch ‘anti-cancel culture’ advocacy organization MORE, who said the charges against them were “disgraceful.”
McCloskey’s campaign adds another controversial candidate for the GOP in a race to replace retiring Sen. Roy BluntRoy Dean BluntMissouri Republicans move to block Greitens in key Senate race On The Money: Biden, Senate GOP take step toward infrastructure deal as other plans hit speed bumps Senate GOP to give Biden infrastructure counteroffer next week MORE (R) Republicans cannot afford to lose.
The GOP is already facing a headache over the candidacy of former Gov. Eric Greitens, who resigned in disgrace in 2018 over allegations he had an affair with his hairdresser and blackmailed and sexually assaulted her.
Democrats currently only control the 50-50 Senate due only to Vice President Harris’s tie-breaking vote, meaning that the GOP must net a flip of just one seat next year to retake the upper chamber. However, the party is anxiously trying to avoid putting forward a controversial candidate in Missouri, an increasingly conservative state where Republicans would normally have the advantage in a statewide contest.
Missouri Attorney General Eric Schmitt is expected to rally establishment support to try to win the GOP primary.