Donald Trump is leaning toward a strong endorsement of conservative TV commentator Tudor Dixon in the Republican primary for governor of Michigan, several GOP sources in Michigan told Newsmax on Monday.
Reportedly pushing hard for the former president to come out for Dixon are two of his major supporters in the Wolverine State: Betsy DeVos, who was Trump's secretary of education, and John Rakolta, Jr., an Oakland County businessman who served as Trump's ambassador to the United Arab Emirates (and is the uncle of Republican National Chair Ronna McDaniel).
With the stunning news Friday that five of the ten Republican gubernatorial hopefuls were thrown off the August primary ballot by the Michigan Board of Canvassers, Dixon's stock immediately shot up in "Trumpworld."
Even before the surprise winnowing of the primary field, Dixon, 44 and a mother of four, was getting some surprising momentum. Richard DeVos, husband of Betsy and heir to the Amway fortune, announced on WJR (Detroit) Radio last week that the entire DeVos family was not only supporting Dixon but would be getting very heavily financially involved in the campaign.
"President Trump has on two occasions mentioned Tudor Dixon as a great candidate," noted Steve Mitchell, widely considered Michigan's premier pollster, "But he has not endorsed her because she's not doing well in the polling because of a lack of funding. This situation may be in the process of changing."
Dixon, who often spoke at Trump rallies in 2016 and 2020, made clear to Newsmax Monday night she wants and would pursue his support.
"Some of our key Republican opponents failed to qualify for the ballot," she told Newsmax. "I am grateful to President Trump for the encouragement and as I told him [in April], I won't let him down as we continue to pursue his complete and total endorsement soon."
Among those bounced from the GOP ballot for faulty signatures on petitions — all gathered by paid canvassers — were the two Republicans who are widely-considered front-runners in the primary: former Detroit Police Chief James Craig and multi-millionaire businessman Perry Johnson. Both had major financial backing and big-name endorsements.
But the failure to secure the required number of legitimate signatures almost surely dooms access to the primary ballot by Craig, Johnson, businesswoman Donna Brandenburg, financial adviser Michael Markey, and Michigan Police Captain Mike Brown (who had already withdrawn from the race a week ago). Although Craig and Johnson have vowed to challenge their disqualifications in court, most Michigan sources agree that it is unlikely they will be restored. Ballots for the August primary have to be printed by June 3.
The remaining candidates on the ballot are Dixon, millionaire chiropractor Garrett Soldano, car dealer Kevin Rinke, Oakland County Pastor Ralph Rebandt, and state lockdown opponent Ryan Kelley.
John Gizzi is chief political columnist and White House correspondent for Newsmax. For more of his reports, Go Here Now.
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