Sessions fired back at Trump, arguing his recusal was justified and characterizing Trump as having been "damn fortunate" for the recusal. "I protected the rule of law & resulted in your exoneration". Sessions was a former Alabama senator who became the us attorney general in 2017. Doug Jones (D-AL), who defeated former Alabama Supreme Court Chief Justice Roy Moore in a special election in 2017 to fill Sessions' old seat.
The victor of the Sessions-Tuberville runoff will face Democratic incumbent Sen.
Trump tweeted, "Alabama, do not trust Jeff Sessions". "He let our Country down", the President tweeted.
Trump - once a close ally of Sessions - soured on the courtly Alabaman after he recused himself from the Russian Federation probe, which consumed several years of Trump's presidency. Sessions and Tuberville are vying for the Republican nomination to a Senate seat the Sessions held for 20 years before he left to become attorney general in 2017. "I won't ever run from a fight in the U.S. Senate", Tuberville, a political neophyte, said in a social media statement. When faced with supporting POTUS or running scared, Jeff Sessions chose the easy way out and recused himself.
But even as Sessions pushed back against the president's criticism Friday, he also tried to argue that his policy positions are more in tune with Trump than Tuberville's.
Trump erupted angrily when he learned of the recusal and never forgave Sessions, blaming that decision for the long-running investigation by Mueller that ended a year ago. Sessions was the first US senator to endorse Trump, donning a Make America Great Again hat at an Alabama rally.
Sessions was sacked after the midterm elections in 2018 and replaced by William Barr, an attorney general who has proved much more to Trump's liking, working to protect the president and to reject the findings and premise of the justice department investigation into Russian election interference.
Tommy Tuberville speaks to his supporters at Auburn Oaks Farm in Notasulga, Ala., March 3, 2020. But because Tuberville did not attract support from an outright majority, he will face Sessions - the No. 2 finisher in March - in the July runoff.
Sessions went on to attack his opponent, Tuberville.
Sessions later alleged Tuberville is "too afraid to debate me". Tuberville said that voters knew where senators - like Tom Cotton of Arkansas and Josh Hawley of Missouri - stood on issues "before they got into the U.S. Senate".