CHICAGO — Joe Walsh, the flame-throwing conservative radio show host and former Illinois congressman, is moving toward challenging President Donald Trump in a Republican primary, calling the president an “unfit divider-in-chief” and claiming that the party is craving an alternative.
Walsh told POLITICO on Wednesday that he was confident he could secure the resources and support to mount a challenge against the president, and that if he ran, he would announce in short order. While Walsh on Wednesday would not yet confirm he would enter the primary, two sources who spoke to him said he was privately confirming he would announce his presidential bid this weekend.
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“If I’m to do it, it’s going to happen soon,” Walsh told POLITICO on Wednesday. “I’ve been really surprised by the amount of anxiousness from people across the spectrum who want this president to have a challenge, because there’s just a real concern that he’s absolutely unfit.”
Walsh has little chance of posing a genuine threat to Trump, who’s light years ahead in fundraising and whose favorability remains strong with Republicans in poll after poll.
He was elected in 2010 as part of the Tea Party movement and served one term. Initially a strong backer of Trump, he became a steady critic of the president and called him “a danger to this country.”
When asked on Wednesday whether he could secure financial resources to go up against Trump’s treasure chest, Walsh responded: “Abso-freaking-lutely. There’s a drumbeat from a lot of people out there for somebody who wants to take this on.”
Walsh contends that based on conversations he’s had, he could win financial support “all over the spectrum.”
“I think if there is an alternative out there,” Walsh said, “the money will follow.”