With the first step in the Republican primary presidential nomination process just two weeks away, Minnesota’s top-ranking GOP member of Congress announced Wednesday he has endorsed frontrunner Donald Trump for president.
“Democrats have made clear they will use every tool in their arsenal to try and keep Joe Biden and his failed policies in power,” wrote Rep. Tom Emmer in an early morning social media post to X, formerly known as Twitter. “We cannot let them.”
“It’s time for Republicans to unite behind our party’s clear frontrunner, which is why I am proud to endorse Donald J. Trump for President,” said Emmer, who is seeking a sixth term this November representing Minnesota’s Sixth District in the U.S. House of Representatives. He has served since 2022 as majority whip.
Just an hour later, Emmer tweeted out another statement announcing all four Republicans in Minnesota’s congressional delegation are throwing their weight behind Trump:
“Joe Biden’s failed policies have left Minnesotans to grapple with double digit inflation, higher taxes, and a border crisis that has turned every community into a border community,” a joint statement from Emmer and congressional colleagues Michelle Fischbach, Pete Stauber and Brad Finstad begins. “It’s time for Republicans to come together in support of a leader who has what it takes to get our country back on track. We stand together to endorse Donald J. Trump for president.”
— Tom Emmer (@tomemmer) January 3, 2024
In her own words endorsing Trump, Fischbach, who represents Minnesota’s Seventh Congressional District, said, “Republicans are strongest when we stand together.”
Stauber took to social media to individually endorse Trump, who he said “will get our country back on track!”
Jan. 15 Iowa caucus will kick off GOP primary race
While Trump continues to show he has a large lead over his primary opponents in recently conducted national primary polls and in an Iowa GOP caucus poll released last month by the Des Moines Register and NBC News, those trailing the former president continue to campaign vigorously across the state, which will hold its caucus on Monday, Jan. 15.
Next Thursday, Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis and former South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley are expected to debate in Iowa before a live national audience on CNN. At the same time, instead of debating his opponents on the same stage, Trump has said he will hold a “town hall”-style program on Fox News. Trump has declined to participate in any of the GOP primary debates held over the last five months.
DeSantis has the support of Iowa Gov. Kim Reynolds, considered to be an unprecedented move by a Republican governor in Iowa ahead of the first-in-the-nation caucus. And the two-term Florida governor also boasts the endorsement of more than three dozen Republican Iowa legislators, which he says he has earned during his tour of Iowa’s 99 counties. Republicans in Iowa currently hold a “trifecta” in state government, where they control both the Senate and House and the executive branch.
Trump called Emmer a ‘RINO’ just two months ago
Emmer’s endorsement of Trump on Wednesday came just two months after his short-lived bid for House Speaker went belly up following a statement by Trump calling Emmer a “RINO” and saying it would be a “tragic mistake” for the GOP majority in the House to elect him to its top post.
“I believe [Emmer] has now learned his lesson, because he is saying that he is Pro-Trump all the way, but who can ever be sure?” Trump wrote. “Has he only changed because that’s what it takes to win? The Republican Party cannot take that chance, because that’s not where the America First Voters are. Voting for a Globalist RINO like Tom Emmer would be a tragic mistake!”
After it became clear Emmer would not be able to garner enough votes from among his caucus, Emmer withdrew his nomination.
The next day Republicans in the House elected Mike Johnson as their speaker, following Trump’s “strong suggestion” to support Johnson’s candidacy.
Hank Long is a journalism and communications professional whose writing career includes coverage of the Minnesota legislature, city and county governments and the commercial real estate industry. Hank received his undergraduate degree at the University of Minnesota, where he studied journalism, and his law degree at the University of St. Thomas. The Minnesota native lives in the Twin Cities with his wife and four children. His dream is to be around when the Vikings win the Super Bowl.