The lawmaker representing northern Alabama announced his campaign to fill the seat occupied by longtime Senator Richard Shelby, who is retiring.
(CN) — Congressman Mo Brooks, one of the first Republican lawmakers who said they would vote to overturn the results of the 2020 presidential election, announced Monday he is running for one of Alabama’s Senate seats in the midterm elections.
In an announcement the lawmaker noted in the outset wouldn’t be a “rah rah locker room-type speech,” Brooks said he was giving up a secure House seat to hazard a run for the Senate because the status of the nation is “at risk from those within our country who are adopting policies that in the long haul will hurt America and reduce us to a second-rate country.”
Brooks said he has experience that will give voters peace of mind that he will do what he campaigns to do. He championed his long record as congressman, a county commissioner and a lawmaker twice endorsed by former President Donald Trump.
Running through a list of policy platforms, he criticized House Democrats’ move to strip Representative Marjorie Taylor Greene, R-Georgia, from her committee assignments and stressed the benefits of strong border security.
He also touted his involvement in the Republican effort to overturn the 2020 elections, which began when he was one of the first member of Congress who said at the beginning of December he planned to challenge the electoral count.
“Your Alabama congressman led that fight and no other Alabama candidate for the United States Senate can say that,” Brooks said.
Brooks spoke at the beginning of Trump’s Jan. 6 rally to protest the certification of the results of the presidential election, and he urged rallygoers to go up to the Capitol.
“Our ancestors sacrificed their blood, their sweat, their tears, their fortunes and sometimes their lives to give us, their descendants, an America that is the greatest nation in world history. So I have a question for you: Are you willing to do the same?” Brooks asked the Jan. 6 crowd to cheers.
As Congress reconvened after a mob overwhelmed police officers and forced themselves inside the U.S. Capitol, Brooks continued to object to the tabulation of the 2020 presidential election.
Representative Eric Swalwell, D-Calif., later sued Brooks, accusing him of inciting the crowd that stormed the Capitol.
Brooks made his announcement Monday evening from an indoor shooting range in Huntsville, Alabama.
At the beginning of February, Alabama’s longtime statesman Senator Richard Shelby, a Republican who is credited for helping to increase the state’s involvement in the nation’s space and defense programs, announced he would not seek reelection.
Brooks is one of the many politicians who is expected to seek the seat. During the 2017 special election to fill the seat of Jeff Sessions, who left the chamber to become President Donald Trump’s attorney general, Brooks came up third in the race.
Brooks once worked as a special assistant attorney general under then-Alabama Attorney General Jeff Sessions in the mid-1990s.
Appearing onstage to endorse Brooks’ run, close advisor to Trump Stephen Miller — Sessions’ former director of communications — said people around the country would rally around Brooks if Alabama sent him to the Senate. Miller was instrumental in the Trump administration’s immigration policies.
“The America First movement is counting on you,” Miller said.
Brooks is facing one opponent so far in the Republican Primary: Lynda Blanchard, Trump’s ambassador to Slovenia, who said in her mid-February announcement video that she was “a proud member of the MAGA movement.”