Former Alabama GOP Senate candidate Mike Durant says he won't vote for runoff contenders Mo Brooks or Katie Britt: 'Bad people won'

Former Alabama GOP Senate candidate Mike Durant says he won't vote for runoff contenders Mo Brooks or Katie Britt: 'Bad people won'
Mike Durant.Richard Shotwell/Invision/AP
  • Mike Durant says he won't back either of his ex-GOP opponents in Alabama's Senate runoff election.
  • Durant, who placed third in the May primary, criticized ads that questioned his pro-gun stance.

When Mike Durant entered the GOP primary for the open Alabama Senate race last year, the businessman and former Army pilot known for being held prisoner in the 1993 "Black Hawk Down" incident touted himself as a political outsider in the mold of former President Donald Trump.

However, after a bruising campaign in which allies of his two main primary opponents — former Senate chief of staff Katie Britt and Rep. Mo Brookshammered him on his commitment to gun rights in one of the most conservative states in the country, his once-stellar poll numbers began to crater.

In last month's primary election, Durant won 23 percent of the vote, coming in third place behind Britt and Brooks, who both advanced to a June 21 runoff, as they were the top two vote-getters in a field where no one candidate received over 50 percent of the vote.

But Durant — who at one time was seen as the frontrunner in the race and now calls the political process "broken" — recently told 1819 News that he would not vote for Britt or Brooks in the upcoming runoff.

"I'm not going to vote," Durant told the outlet. "Katie Britt doesn't deserve to be a senator. Mo Brooks has been in politics for 40 years, and all he does is run his mouth. If that is the best we have, we're in trouble."


He added: "When the bad guys win, that's a problem. That is what bothers me the most. I wasn't that thrilled about going to Washington anyway, but I wanted to make a difference. What bothers me most is, bad people won."

Durant expressed frustration that his opponents used a 2011 speech in which he spoke of maintaining security for US troops in Somalia and Afghanistan — along with gun violence in major American cities — to frame him as weak on the Second Amendment, an allegation that he firmly rejected.

While on the Rightside Radio program in April, Durant hit back at the political attacks over his speech.

"It's mischaracterized," Durant said. "I'm absolutely pro-2nd Amendment. I've been a hunter my whole life. I've got my own collection of weapons."

He continued: "I shoot more rounds every month than most people shoot in their lives. ... If this is the best you can do, (my opponents) dig up something from 10 years ago that wasn't really what I was saying, I guess it's part of the game."


The Alabama race was largely seen as a relative slam-dunk for Brooks — the conservative lawmaker who had been endorsed by former President Donald Trump — but stagnant poll numbers, middling fundraising totals, and an accusation of going "woke" led to the former president pulling his support from his longtime ally.

Durant and Britt used the opening to make the case for their candidacies among conservatives, but negative ads targeting the military veteran flooded the state, which hurt his campaign and led many voters to migrate to Brooks.

While speaking with 1819 News, Durant expressed further disappointment at what he said was the current state of Republican politics.

"This was a Republican primary. The [Ronald] Reagan years were the glory days of the Republican Party. There is a reason we're not there anymore. Everybody has their own agenda," he said.

He added: "Nobody cares what is right for the Conservatives of this country, the backbone of this country. Reagan's 11th Commandment ['Thou shalt not speak ill of any fellow Republican'] – we're a long way from that."