Here’s an amazing stat: In the last 14 contested Republican primaries where President Donald Trump has endorsed a candidate, his pick has won — or is leading — all 14 times.
That’s remarkable. (Hat tip to WaPo’s James Hohmann for doing the math!) And it speaks to the fact that despite Trump’s weak numbers among the general populace, he remains a massively powerful force within the GOP — someone who can make and break candidacies with a single tweet.
Take Tuesday night. Trump endorsed John James in Michigan’s Republican Senate primary, Bill Schuette in the Michigan governor’s race and Kris Kobach in the Kansas gubernatorial primary.
James, who had been considered an underdog prior to the Trump endorsement, won the right to face Democratic Sen. Debbie Stabenow. Schuette, the sitting attorney general, crushed the state’s lieutenant governor and several other challengers for the right to take on Democratic former state Senate Majority Leader Gretchen Whitmer in the fall.
But Trump’s biggest coup appears to be his endorsement of Kobach, the controversial secretary of state who currently holds a lead of fewer than 200 votes over appointed Gov. Jeff Colyer.who led Trump’s short-lived commission to investigate electoral fraud, is a favorite of the state’s Trump conservatives but viewed very, very suspiciously by the party’s establishment. His victory, if it holds, would make the Kansas governor’s race competitive.