On Wednesday, in the aftermath of an election in which Republicans underperformed, winning the House but wondering if they could still eke out a victory in the Senate, former President Trump boasted on Truth Social, “While in certain ways yesterday’s election was somewhat disappointing, from my personal standpoint it was a very big victory — 219 WINS and 16 Losses in the General — Who has ever done better than that?”
What Trump did not elucidate was that the bulk of the winners in the races he endorsed came from safely Republican districts, with 16 of the candidates actually having run uncontested. Election results also show that 13 Trump-endorsed candidates lost in highly competitive or closely watched races. Of the 219 wins referenced by Trump, only around a dozen of those races were extremely competitive.
On Election Day, Trump told Markie Martin on NewsNation that if the candidates he endorsed won, he “should get all the credit,” adding, “And if they lose, I should not be blamed at all, okay?”
“But it’ll probably be just the opposite,” he continued. “When they win, I think they’re going to do very well, I’ll probably be given very little credit even though in many cases I told people to run and they ran and they turned out to be very good candidates. You know, they’ve turned out to be very good candidates.”
Last April, Trump endorsed Dr. Mehmet Oz over David McCormick, the former Under Secretary of the Treasury for International Affairs, saying, “I have known Dr. Oz for many years, as have many others, even if only through his very successful television show. He has lived with us through the screen and has always been popular, respected, and smart.” Trump reportedly said of Oz, “He’s been on TV in people’s bedrooms and living rooms for years.”
At the time of Trump’s endorsement, McCormick had a six-point lead in the polls; within days Oz caught up to McCormick. Oz wound up losing to Democrat John Fetterman in the general election.
Trump was instrumental in Herschel Walker’s entry as a senatorial candidate to oppose incumbent Georgia Democrat Senator Raphael Warnock; USA Today noted in March 2021, “Trump is pushing a Georgia celebrity, former football star Herschel Walker, to run against Warnock.”
Despite having the coattails of Georgia GOP Governor Brian Kemp’s smashing victory on Tuesday, Walker finished behind Warnock and must face him in a run-off election.
Trump backed GOP senatorial candidate Blake Masters in June before the GOP primary, in which Masters faced state Attorney General Mark Brnovich, businessman Jim Lamon, and retired National Guard major general Michael McGuire.
Trump backed GOP senatorial J.D. Vance in Ohio, who wound up winning but underperforming, winning only by a margin of 6.6% while GOP Governor Mike DeWine won his race by a staggering 25 points.