President Donald Trump can breathe a sigh of relief! Ardent anti-Trump former Sen. Jeff Flake (R-AZ) has ruled out a 2020 primary challenge against the sitting president, opting for a contributor position with CBS News instead.
The former senator announced the move on CBS "This Morning."
"I've always said that I do hope there is a Republican who challenges President Trump," said Flake. "That will not be me."
Flake admitted that "there really isn’t a path" for a Trump challenger on the Republican side, but added that he’s still hopeful for one.
"The RNC (Republican National Committee) and the president's campaign are now melded. They’re trying to do anything they can to squelch any opposition. I still hope that some, and some are still talking about, do run. I think that’s healthy, and I’m not a fan of this president. But that won’t be me."
Flake will be working on a new series for the network called "Common Ground."
"Common ground may be hard to find in Washington, but it is found everywhere else in the country. I look forward to working with CBS on this new series," wrote Flake in a Tuesday morning tweet.
Donald Trump Jr. was quick to react to the news, taking a jab at Flake on Twitter. "Shocked that Jeff flake who wouldn't have come close to winning his home district isn't going to run for president," wrote the eldest Trump son. "I thought he was a real contender. Maybe try for dog catcher!"
Flake was praised by the Left when he announced his retirement on the Senate floor in 2017 and ripped the president and the Republican Party.
"It is often said that children are watching. Well, they are. And what are we going to do about that? When the next generation asks us, Why didn't you do something? Why didn't you speak up? — what are we going to say?" he said.
"Mr. President, I rise today to say: Enough," Flake continued. "We must dedicate ourselves to making sure that the anomalous never becomes normal. With respect and humility, I must say that we have fooled ourselves for long enough that a pivot to governing is right around the corner, a return to civility and stability right behind it. We know better than that. By now, we all know better than that."
Flake's apparently standing up to mean ol' Trump with his new CBS position, a move which no one saw coming ...