Former conservative Sen. Jim DeMint (R-S.C.), who has promised to assist Rosendale, stated that he is running.
Despite his public skepticism about running for the Senate, Rosendale’s actions may create obstacles for his party in their bid to defeat Sen. Jon Tester, who is considered one of the most vulnerable Democrats in the chamber.
Rosendale was the target of a campaign effort by GOP members to block his path and create room for Sheehy, despite his previous involvement in the Senate race. The party was worried that Rosendall would emerge victorious in securing reelection even though he was well-known locally and would still face Tester in an upcoming general election, following his narrow loss in Montana this year.
Despite the circumstances, Rosendale remains unfazed and has recruited Caroline Wren, an ex-Trump campaign adviser who funds conservative candidates such as Kari Lake in Arizona. Additionally, he has been present at events in Kalispell and Polson this summer, all of which are represented by Rep. Ryan Zinke (R-Mont.), who has shown support for Sheehy.
Over the past few weeks, he has been encouraged to participate by Sens. Rand Paul (R-Ky.) and Mike Lee (Michael Moore), members of the House Freedom Caucus, and DeMint and other allied groups, such as Heritage Action and Turning Point Action, all have pledged their support for him. According to two sources familiar with the matter, Rosendale is also expected to receive financial backing from Senate Conservatives Fund, an independent PAC established by DeMINt.
The spokesperson for Heritage Action confirmed that the group is not participating in GOP primaries and has no intentions to endorse any candidate.
Several prominent conservatives tweeted about the congressman’s achievements over the last two weeks, including Reps. Matt Gaetz (R-Fla.) and Eli Crane (D-Ariz.).
According to DeMint, the presence of individuals like Matt on the Senate floor is necessary for the country’s direction. He urged him to run and support his efforts to change the culture.
At a fundraiser in Kalispell, there was speculation about statewide politics. A source revealed that Rosendale had been involved in rumors by local GOP supporters who placed duct tape over his campaign sign to obscure inscriptions that read “U.S. Congress,” which may have inspired him to run for the Senate.
Montana voters are unwavering in their support for Rep. Rosendale, according to Aashka Varma, a top aide to the congressman.
Varma aimed to attack Sheehy by suggesting potential attacks on diversity, equity and inclusion programs, and environmental, social, or governing investing, which are hot topics with the party’s right flank. She stated that Montana voters will not support Leftist ESG and DEI provisions and send American troops into Ukraine.
The two men have been friends at times. Over the years, Sheehy held several campaign events for Rosendale at his home, as per a source with knowledge of them.
Sheehy, a wealthy aerial firefighter, has garnered varying backing from various sources since his run for office. Sen. Steve Daines, the chairman of the National Senatorial Campaign Committee, chose to publicly support him and strongly urge Rosendale to remain in the House. A number of senators, including Minority Whip John Thune (R-S.D.), followed his lead in an unambiguous but well-informed effort to caution Rosendell to stay out.
In June, Daines informed POLITICO that he supports Matt Rosendale and urges him to enhance seniority for the state of Montana in the House.
The consequences of any potential primary will be felt far beyond Montana. To regain control of the Senate, Republicans must secure at least two and possibly one seat. West Virginia and Montana are their primary targets.
The Club for Growth’s president, David McIntosh, revealed that despite supporting Rosendale in the 2018 Senate race, the group was not confident about backing him.
Despite the Club president’s claim of being “misquoted,” the congressman has not publicly acknowledged his involvement with McIntosh during their conversation. A source close to the meeting stated that McIntoshe did not reveal himself behind the microphone when they spoke, according to an insider.
Late last month, the Club began to question whether it was in their interest for Rosendale. McIntosh praised Sheehy as an exceptional candidate and stated that his group had not yet made a decision regarding Rosenthal’s potential candidacy.
McIntosh stated that if he succeeds, they will scrutinize the race closely and determine the most suitable solution.
During a similar dinner in February, McIntosh took on opportune positions and expressed his desire to support Rosendale if he were to run.
The Club has a remarkable group of wealthy donors and is capable of allocating funds to crucial races. Its plans to support Rep. Alex Mooney in the West Virginia Senate race are part of its efforts to gather $13 million, which it hopes to use for another contest.