After months of hinting at it, U.S. Rep. Matt Rosendale, R-Mont., has announced his long-predicted run for Senate, challenging incumbent Democratic Sen. Jon Tester, assuming he can beat his primary opponent Montana veteran and businessman Tim Sheehy.
In his announcement, Rosendale criticized conservative voices that have urged him not to run or are supporting his opponent, seemingly equating them to liberal and left-wing forces in Congress.
"For decades, (Senate Minority Leader) Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.), and the Washington establishment have sold the American people short," said Rosendale. "They've been the architects of a $34 trillion debt, the invasion taking place at the southern border, allowing China to spy on Americans and emerge as the global superpower, all while enriching their friends with the Green New Deal, at the taxpayer's expense."
Rosendale repeatedly criticized McConnell, accusing him of collaborating with Democrats and supporting wasteful government spending while presuming to chose Montana's next senator.
"While it has truly been an honor and a privilege to represent Montana in the U.S. House of Representatives, it is difficult for me to stand by and allow Mitch McConnell to select our next senator who would be another voice for the uniparty and another vote for every pork-filled omnibus that comes through the Senate."
McConnell and Montana Republican Sen. Steve Daines have been vocally supportive of Rosendale's primary opponent Tim Sheehy, which has caused a fair amount of tension within the party over the race.
In response to Rosendale's announcement a Sheehy spokesperson touted Sheehy's business and military background, his unwavering loyalty to former president Donald Trump, and his commitment to beating Tester.
"Trump and Tim Sheehy cannot be bought and are the conservative warriors we need to put the people of Montana first, drain the swamp, and save our country from the mess Joe Biden and Jon Tester created."
Daines also commented on the announcement expressing doubt that Rosendale can defeat Tester after losing to him in 2018.
"It's unfortunate that rather than building seniority for our great state in the House, Matt is choosing to abandon his seat and create a divisive primary," Daines said in a press release.
Daines reiterated his support for Sheehy saying he is the best candidate to take on Tester, who Rosendale has already lost to.
"Republicans cannot risk nominating a candidate who gave Jon Tester the biggest victory of his career," Daines said.
Tester had not publicly reacted to the announcement by print deadline this morning.