Former Orioles pitcher Curt Schilling can count on the endorsement of President Donald Trump if he decides to run for Congress in Arizona.
The former major league baseball player-turned conservative talk show host is weighing a congressional run in the Copper State, he told the Arizona Republic this week.
Trump took to Twitter on Tuesday to support that potential development, writing that Schilling, who had his best seasons with the Arizona Diamondbacks and Boston Red Sox, was a “great pitcher and patriot” and that it is “terrific!” he is considering running in Arizona.
Schilling, who is listed as a Massachusetts resident, has long been one of major league baseball’s most politically active former players. In 2016 and 2017, he expressed interest in running to unseat Democratic Sen. Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts before ultimately backing out of the race. He actively campaigned for Republican presidential nominee John McCain in 2008 and supported President George W. Bush’s reelection campaign in 2004.
He endorsed Trump in 2016 and has vehemently defended the Trump administration as a commentator for the conservative media outlet Blaze TV.
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Schilling first publicly speculated about a move to Arizona to run for Congress in 2020 this past Sunday in a radio interview with Armed American Radio’s Mark Walters.
“I haven’t said anything publicly, but I’m considering going back to Arizona and running for a congressional seat, one of the blue ones,” Schilling said. “It’s something that my wife and I have talked about, and she’s now becoming more and more pumped at the potential. Obviously, we’re still quite a few discussions away, but yeah, it’s something we’re absolutely considering.”
Democrats control five of Arizona’s nine congressional seats. Inside Elections with Nathan L. Gonzales rates the 2020 races for the 1st and 2nd District Likely Democratic and the races for the 3rd, 7th, and 9th Districts Solid Democratic.
Before entering political commentary, Schilling was a top MLB analyst for ESPN. He won the World Series three times with the Diamondbacks, Red Sox and Philadelphia Phillies and was voted World Series Most Valuable Player in 2001. He also played for the Orioles and Houston Astros, compiling a 216-146 record and a 3.46 ERA over 20 big league seasons.
ESPN fired Schilling in 2016 after he shared an anti-transgender post on Facebook shortly after the state government in North Carolina passed a law that effectively allowed local governments to ban transgender people from using their preferred public bathrooms.
“I wasn’t fired for speaking my mind. I was fired for being a conservative,” Schilling told CNN at the time, noting that ESPN had not fired personality Jemele Hill for speaking out against Trump.
Griffin Connolly is a reporter for CQ-Roll Call.