Eric Schmitt defeats former Governor Greitens in the Missouri GOP primary for the Senate.

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According to NBC News, Eric Schmitt has defeated Eric Greitens’ comeback attempt to become the state’s disgraced former governor by winning the Republican primary for the Senate in Missouri.

According to preliminary statistics, Rep. Vicky Hartzler was in second place behind Schmitt, the state’s attorney general, while Greitens was in third place. Trudy Busch Valentine, a nurse and the heir to the Anheuser-Busch brewing fortune, who won the Democratic primary on Tuesday, will be his opponent. According to NBC News, Valentine defeated ten other Democrats, including Lucas Kunce, a Marine veteran who enjoys widespread support among progressives and who received a last-minute endorsement from Vermont senator Bernie Sanders.

Compared to the GOP primary, which attracted unusually high interest for a primary in a solidly red state, the Democratic primary was lethargic.

In the general election to succeed Republican Sen. Roy Blunt, who is not running for re-election this fall, a Greitens victory probably would have increased the likelihood of a close race. A fear over a Greitens nomination led John Wood, a former investigator for the House Jan. 6 committee, to establish an independent campaign. Longtime Republican John Danforth, R-Mo., who is funding a pro-Wood super PAC, gave Wood a lot of support.

National Republican groups opted not to invest money defending a seat in Missouri because control of the 50-50 Senate was up for grabs.

Greitens had hoped for a last-minute lift from former president Donald Trump, who had disqualified himself from endorsing Hartzler but promised on Monday to do so. Trump has previously lauded Greitens, and Greitens’ campaign was led by Kimberly Guilfoyle, the spouse of his eldest son. But in the end, Trump gave a weak endorsement to Eric, presumably Schmitt or Greitens, and claimed he trusted Missouri voters to make their own decisions.

Greitens, who was once a rising figure in national politics, resigned from his position as governor in 2018 after inquiries into allegations of sexual misconduct and irregularities with campaign financing. Greitens has acknowledged having an extramarital relationship with a woman who accused him of taking an unauthorized nude photo of her, but he has refuted the more severe allegations. Later, a felony breach of privacy allegation was dismissed. It was also investigated how his campaign was funded.

the subject of an advertising blitz by Show Me Values, an anti-Greitens super PAC that spent more than $6 million on ads in the race, according to the ad-tracking company AdImpact, focused on more recent claims made by his ex-wife that Greitens abused her and their young son. Greitens has denied these claims. A pro-Schmitt PAC came in second place in terms of primary spending after Show Me Values. Greitens only invested $137,000 in advertisements, while a super PAC that supported him contributed more than $2 million in airtime.

Greitens, a former Navy SEAL, also came under fire for a campaign video in which he was seen wearing tactical gear, carrying a shotgun, and going “RINO hunting”—a play on the term “Republicans in name only.” Due to the video’s violation of Facebook’s rules against promoting violence, it was removed. But in the last few weeks, Schmitt, Hartzler, and Greitens were basically locked in a three-way contest.

Rep. Billy Long and Mark McCloskey, a St. Louis attorney who won a speaking spot at the 2020 Republican National Convention after being detained in connection with brandishing a firearm at Black Lives Matter protesters outside his home, were among the other 21 candidates in Schmitt’s field.

Schmitt, who has been the state’s attorney general since 2019, portrayed himself as President Joe Biden’s fiercest rival, citing litigation his agency brought against the government.

Schmitt likes to say, “I wake up, I go to work, I sue Joe Biden, and then I go home.”

Hartzler, who received Josh Hawley’s support as the state’s other Republican senator, sought to set herself apart by disparaging her main competitors as “two Erics,” who were identical in decency.

Eric Schmitt plays with a blowtorch while this Eric advertises weapons, Hartzler said in one recent ad. I therefore brought my chainsaw. I’m joking.

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