Here's who former President Trump wants to replace Rep. Debbie Lesko in Congress

Laura Gersony
Arizona Republic
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Former President Donald Trump has endorsed Abe Hamadeh, the unsuccessful 2022 candidate for Arizona attorney general, in the crowded Republican race to replace the retiring Rep. Debbie Lesko in Congress.

"Abe Hamadeh is Strong on the Border, the Military/Vets, Cutting Taxes, Election Integrity, and Protecting our Great Second Amendment," Trump wrote on social media. "He knows that if the flame of freedom is extinguished, it may never come back again."

Trump previously endorsed Hamadeh in his bid to become attorney general.

Hamadeh, who has promoted Trump's baseless claim that the 2020 presidential election was "stolen" from Republicans, has filed multiple lawsuits contesting his own defeat to Democratic Attorney General Kris Mayes in a tight race that was decided by only 280 votes.

In August, the Arizona Supreme Court ordered Hamadeh to cover some of the legal expenses of his opponents in that race because he had misrepresented information to the court.

No evidence has ever been provided that the Arizona 2020 or 2022 elections were compromised by widespread fraud that could have changed the outcome.

Notably, Trump has chosen Hamadeh over another Trump-aligned candidate running for Lesko’s seat: Blake Masters, a venture capitalist who worked with the billionaire Peter Thiel. Trump endorsed Masters during his 2022 bid for U.S. Senate.

Other candidates in the race include Arizona House Speaker Ben Toma, who Lesko has endorsed, and former U.S. Rep. Trent Franks, who resigned from the seat amid controversy in 2017.

Kari Lake, another election-denying Republican candidate who is running for U.S. Senate, congratulated Hamadeh on the endorsement on Friday.

"I've been fighting alongside @AbrahamHamadeh in Arizona for 2 years & I can't wait to continue our fight together in DC," Lake wrote on social media.

Arizona Republic reporter Ryan Randazzo contributed to this article.

This is a developing story. Check www.azcentral.com for updates.

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