ELLISVILLE, Miss. (AP) — A Republican state lawmaker who came close to unseating one of Mississippi's U.S. senators during a bitter 2014 race says he will run against the state's other U.S. senator this year.
Chris McDaniel announced Wednesday that he will challenge Sen. Roger Wicker in the June 5 GOP primary.
— Craig Ford (@cfordwtva) February 28, 2018
Wicker has been in the Senate a decade, and President Donald Trump had tweeted his support for Wicker on Tuesday.
McDaniel was backed by tea party groups when he tried to defeat Mississippi's senior senator, Thad Cochran, in 2014. At the time, McDaniel positioned himself as the outsider trying to topple the political establishment. The same dynamic would be in play in any race against Wicker.
Following McDaniel's announcement, Wicker released the following statement:
"Gayle and I are looking forward to this campaign and sharing my record of successfully fighting to reduce job-killing regulations, confirm conservative judges, enact historic tax cuts, rebuild our military, and honor our veterans. We will work hard to once again earn the votes and support of all Mississippians."