Republican Blake Masters is taking a low-key approach to winning an endorsement from former President Donald Trump as he mounts a campaign for his party’s Senate nomination in Democratic-trending Arizona.
Masters, 34, did not mention Trump, or the Republican Party, during a slick, three-minute video issued Monday to launch his Senate bid. Rather, Masters unveiled his candidacy by messaging heavily on Trump’s populist agenda, emphasizing the cultural flashpoints that appeal to the Republican base and voters loyal to the former president.
It was deliberate, designed to position Masters as the authentic, Trump-aligned candidate and paint the other Republican contenders as patronizing posers.
“The president is smarter than that,” a Masters adviser said, referring to Trump and the lengths some candidates have gone to win his endorsement.
Tactically, Masters’s strategy makes some sense. Trump’s agenda has proven popular in public opinion polls, and running on it could appeal to Trump and the Republican base. Minimizing Trump’s personal