By Talia Kaplan
Published January 09, 2020
“This country is at a crossroads,” he continued. “We are either going to go in the direction that the president wants to take us or the direction of AOC [Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez], [Rep. Ilhan] Omar, Colin Kaepernick and the ‘Squad’ [want].
"I want to help the president take the country in the right direction,” he said.
Byrne claims the outspoken ex-NFL player and the four far-left Democratic freshman congresswomen, including Omar and Ocasio-Cortez, all repeatedly make a mockery of veterans and are tearing the U.S. apart.
“We had a great week last week and a real victory going forward. So we need senators who are going to stand with the president, not work against him,” Byrne also said, referencing the killing of Iranian Gen. Qassem Soleimani in a U.S. airstrike.
In a new campaign ad released Monday, Byrne has made his message personal by referencing his brother Dale Byrne, an Army veteran who died in 2013 of a heart attack following a lengthy respiratory illness that family members claim he contracted while deployed in the Middle East.
“It hurts me to hear Ilhan Omar cheapening 9/11. Entitled athletes dishonoring our flag. The ‘Squad’ attacking America,” he said in the video while images of Kaepernick, Omar, Ocasio-Cortez, D-N.Y., Rashida Tlaib, D-Mich., and Ayanna Pressley, D-Mass., appear.
Ocasio-Cortez and Tlaib have accused President Trump of committing “war crimes” for ordering the drone strike that killed Soleimani.
Responding to those who criticized his campaign message, Bradley said on “Fox & Friends” Thursday, “I am so proud of that ad.”
“There is a cultural divide in this country,” Byrne said. “The vast majority of us are on the president's side. But these people like Omar and Colin Kaepernick criticizing the president because he took out the most dangerous man in the Middle East — give me a break.”
“The rest of us have had enough. And we want to stand up with this president and push forward with the country, not criticize him when he [does] something that makes the whole world safer,” he continued.
Kaepernick, who Byrne refers to as an “entitled athlete” in his new ad, responded to Soleimani’s killing by tweeting last week, “There is nothing new about American terrorist attacks against Black and Brown people for the expansion of American imperialism.”
Byrne responded to that tweet on social media writing, “Anyone who doesn’t understand which side is terrorist and which side is fighting the terrorists is either delusional or, worse, anti-America. Which do you think this jerk is?”
He elaborated on “Fox & Friends” on Thursday saying, “This guy Soleimani probably killed more brown and black people than anybody in the Middle East.”
“They’re criticizing the president who took the right decision to protect us and protect people around the world,” he continued. “It's time for us to stand up with the president and push back against people like Kaepernick and Omar.”
Byrne will compete against former Attorney General Jeff Sessions and five others in the Republican primary. They're all vying to take on Jones, considered the most endangered Democrat in the U.S. Senate because he represents a usually reliably red state.
Fox News’ Danielle Wallace contributed to this report.