Arizona House candidate Blake Masters for years served as a loyal foot soldier to former President Donald Trump, echoing his rampant election denialism and running one of the most Trump-aligned Senate races in recent memory.
This week Trump gave him the boot, endorsing Masters’ opponent Abe Hamadeh in the Republican House primary and promising prospective MAGA voters that Hamadeh “will never let you down.”
The endorsement served as a massive blow to Masters, who had benefited from the full might of Trump’s backing during his narrowly unsuccessful Senate bid in 2022. Now he faces an uphill battle to be competitive in a primary contest for a House seat.
“I am giving Abe Hamadeh my Complete and Total Endorsement in his quest to be the Congressman from District 8, representing the Great State of Arizona,” Trump wrote to Truth Social on Friday. “Abe Hamadeh is a veteran, a former prosecutor and fearless fighter for our elections. He will be a true WARRIOR in Congress, and always put America First!”
Masters initially considered another run at an Arizona Senate seat, only to find himself pitted against failed Arizona gubernatorial candidate and former ally Kari Lake. In September, amid mounting skepticism that Masters would embark on a run, the pair got into it during a heated phone call first reported by The Daily Beast that furthered tensions between the potential rivals.
Ultimately, Masters forwent another Senate run in favor of a campaign for the Arizona House seat held by Republican Debbie Lesko, who announced in October she would not seek re-election. Masters’ House run was built on a slate of Trump-aligned priorities, including building additions to the southern border wall.
Thirty two minutes after Masters made his announcement, Hamadeh announced he’d received Lake’s endorsement—inciting a defacto proxy war between the pair as they jockeyed for seats on Capitol Hill. Trump’s fawning over Masters’ opponent on Friday made it abundantly clear what side he’s on.