Republican Congressional Candidate Under Fire for ‘Deceptive’ Messaging Implying Trump Endorsement 

new Nick Langworthy
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Republican congressional candidate Nick Langworthy is under fire from his primary opponent after sending out “deceptive” mailers that suggest former President Donald Trump endorses him.

The New York State Conservative Party sent Langworthy supporters a mailer that featured a photo of Langworthy and Trump with the caption “CHOSEN BY PRESIDENT TRUMP.”

“Chosen by President Trump to lead Republicans in the fight against New York’s radical liberals, Nick Langworthy has a proven record of defeating Democrats and advancing our America First agenda,” the mailer continued.

In addition to the New York State Conservative Party mailer, Langworhty’s campaign has sent fundraising messages and aired television ads that also alluded to a Trump endorsement.

“President Trump called on Nick Langworthy to lead Republicans in the fight against New York’s radical liberals,” one fundraising text message read.

“When the New York Republican Party needed new leadership, President Trump called on me,” Langworthy said in a campaign TV ad.

Despite Langworthy’s messaging, Trump has not made an endorsement in his primary battle against businessman Carl Paladino.

Langworthy once had a Trump endorsement, but that came in a previous election cycle when he ran for New York Republican Party chairman.

Michael Caputo, one of Paladino’s close friends, called Langworthy’s wording “deceptive” and argued it would confuse voters.

“I find Nick’s flirtations with all the synonyms for ‘endorsed’ to be offensive. Because it’s clearly meant to confuse voters and that frankly is just not how we do things in Trump world,” said Caputo, who served in Trump’s administration as a Department of Health and Human Services spokesperson.

“When you use different synonyms for ‘endorsed’ and bend the rules so much, it offends anyone who tries to be in line with the president’s wishes. The president doesn’t like people doing this,” Caputo added.

However, Langworthy campaign consultant Chris Grant claimed the campaign’s language is “very accurate and specific.”

“Nick never implied that the president has endorsed him for Congress, he has way too much respect for him to do that,” Grant told Politico. “I think for the Paladino campaign, who gets ‘tricked’ into praising Hitler and ‘tricked’ into hiring essentially child porn smugglers, they could easily get tricked about it. But I think normal intelligent voters know how to read.”

As Politico explained:

Grant’s reference was to revelations earlier this month that Paladino had previously said Hitler was “the kind of leader we need today,” and once had a convicted sex offender on his company payroll who was employed as assistant treasurer for the campaign before being removed from the campaign and FEC filings.

This is not the first time Trump’s image has been used in a campaign this cycle to imply an endorsement.

For example, Trump recently issued a cease and desist letter to Arizona Attorney General Mark Brnovich over his use of Trump’s name and likeness in his run for U.S. Senate.

“Your use of President Trump’s name, image, and/or likeness is likely to deceive individuals into believing President Trump supports, endorses, or otherwise promotes your candidacy for U.S. Senate in Arizona — he does not,” Trump’s attorney wrote.

It is unclear whether Trump will make an endorsement in New York’s 23rd congressional district GOP primary before the election occurs on August 23. Still, he is aware of the Langworthy campaign’s use of his name and image, according to a Republican operative close to the former president.

“It has not gone unnoticed in Trump world where nothing gets him angrier than falsely using Trump’s name to claim an endorsement,” the GOP operative told Politico.

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