There was a time when former Attorney General Jeff Sessions and President Donald Trump were friends, with Sessions being among Trump’s staunchest surrogates.
Times have changed considerably, though, and now, as the former lawmaker attempts to reignite his political career and reclaim his former U.S. Senate seat from Alabama, Trump has slammed Sessions and urged him to drop out of the race, Breitbart reports.
Serious rift emerges
During the 2016 presidential election, then-Sen. Jeff Sessions (R-AL) was among the first high-profile Republicans to openly support Trump.
After Trump was elected, Sessions was appointed to serve as the attorney general of the United States, and while this was not an overly popular decision at the time, it was Trump’s way of thanking Sessions for his loyalty.
However, when Robert Mueller’s investigation into alleged Trump–Russia collusion was launched, and Sessions recused himself from the matter, the line was drawn in the sand — and the relationship between Sessions and Trump was never the same.
Senate campaign reopens wound
After leaving the Trump administration, Sessions ultimately announced that he was going to run for the Senate seat he left to serve as attorney general. But while he has reached out numerous times to make peace with Trump, the president has not been receptive to the overtures.
The former attorney general’s opponent for the Alabama Republican nomination to run against incumbent Sen. Doug Jones (D-AL) is Tommy Tuberville, an Arkansas native and former college football coach.
Tuberville has spoken out against some of the president’s policies in the past, but today, the “issues” page on his campaign website mentions President Trump six different times, painting a picture of a candidate who will fully support the Trump agenda if elected.
The former football coach also has the vocal backing of Trump, as USA Today notes, something Sessions clearly does not possess.
Sessions trails Tuberville
With the latest polling numbers painting a grim picture for Sessions — he is currently down by 20 points — President Trump is now calling for Sessions to suspend his campaign and “pray” that Jones is soundly defeated in the race.
Jeff, you had your chance & you blew it. Recused yourself ON DAY ONE (you never told me of a problem), and ran for the hills. You had no courage, & ruined many lives. The dirty cops, & others, got caught by better & stronger people than you. Hopefully this slime will pay a big… https://t.co/AJPUBTPCnT
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) May 23, 2020
Sessions seems unlikely to grant Trump’s wish, however, so the election will go on as planned in July, with the winner set to face off against Jones in November.