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In video in front of Trump Tower in Manhattan, Nancy Mace says her Trump-backed primary opponent is ‘more than qualified’ to lose the seat to Democrats

Republican Rep. Nancy Mace of South Carolina speaks at a news conference on Capitol Hill on November 15, 2021.

Jacquelyn Martin/AP Photo

  • Nancy Mace posted a video of herself in front of Trump Tower in Manhattan after Trump endorsed an opponent.
  • She said Katie Arrington, who Trump endorsed, is “more than qualified” to lose the seat to Democrats.
  • Trump said Mace was an “absolutely terrible candidate,” taking aim at her “remarks and attitude.”

Republican Rep. Nancy Mace of South Carolina posted a video of herself outside Trump Tower in Manhattan on Thursday the day after former President Donald Trump endorsed her Republican primary opponent.

“Hey everyone, Congresswoman Nancy Mace here,” she said, looking into the camera. “I’m in front of Trump Tower today.”

On Wednesday, Trump formally endorsed Katie Arrington, a former South Carolina state representative who successfully defeated former Republican Rep. Mark Sanford in 2018 in a campaign that focused on Sanford’s lack of loyalty to Trump.

“Katie Arrington is running against an absolutely terrible candidate, Congresswoman Nancy Mace, whose remarks and attitude have been devastating for her community, and not at all representative of the Republican Party to which she has been very disloyal,” Trump said in a statement that also referred to Sanford as “another terrible candidate” and “Mr. Argentina.” Sanford famously traveled to Argentina as part of an extramarital affair when he served as governor of the state.

In the video, Mace touted her prior support for Trump, noting that she was worked for his campaign in 2016 and travelled to “seven different states across the country to help get him elected.”

“Nancy Pelosi would love nothing more than to win this seat back in a midterm election cycle,” said Mace in the video. “She did it in [2018] and she can do it again this cycle.”

Arrington went on to lose to Democrat Joe Cunningham in 2018.

“I won this seat back for Republicans in 2020,” she said. “If you want to lose this seat once again in a midterm election cycle to Democrats, then my opponent is more than qualified to do just that.”

—Nancy Mace (@NancyMace) February 10, 2022

 

Mace, like other House Republicans, has struggled to strike a balance on when to criticize Trump.

Her outspoken nature at times has been even more notable given that she is only a freshman lawmaker. While she did not support impeaching Trump for inciting the insurrection, Mace told a local newspaper at the time that Trump and the GOP’s policy legacy over his time in office was “wiped out in just a few short hours.” 

She was one of just nine Republicans to vote to hold Trump-ally Steve Bannon in contempt after he defied the January 6 Committee’s subpoenas. Mace has also tangled with her more pro-Trump colleagues, most notably Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene of Georgia.

“She was all about President Trump, until Jan. 6. She basically stabbed him in the back and her voters in the back, and I think that’s terrible,” Greene told Politico last October.

Like other incumbents, Mace does have one major advantage: money. According to their latest FEC filings, Mace had more than $1.5 million on hand to start off the year. Arrington had less than $700.

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