Republican congressman rejects calls to drop Senate bid in wake of polling numbers

Mark Walker, North Carolina’s Republican congressman, has vowed to continue his bid for the U.S. Senate, calling the poll results — in which he is trailing Rep. Richard Shelby, R-Ala., by 10 points — a “wake-up call” for voters.

In an interview with The Hill, Mr. Walker called the “shock” of the results the result of what he called “a media run.”

“The spotlight on the race shows there’s a tremendous amount of discontent and a tremendous amount of dissatisfaction with Congress in general,” he told The Hill. “The idea that you would call it a race is a shock. But the idea that you would even question it is even more of a shock.”

This comes after a weekend report that the Republican National Committee had called on Mr. Walker to drop out of the Senate race because of unfavorable polling data. The report sparked a war of words with the Republican incumbent. Mr. Walker denied any knowledge of the conversation that the report claimed he had had with the RNC, and the Senate race has since continued to swirl.

“I talked to him about a number of things in there, but he never told me that he was urging me to get out of the race,” Mr. Walker told The Hill. “And I don’t know where they got that information, that’s for them to figure out.”

The Republican congressman did concede that part of his campaign had been taken over by other Republicans — including former New York Mayor Rudy Giuliani and Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas — while also accusing other Republican members of sending recorded messages to the media.

Mr. Walker told The Hill that he would continue to speak with Alabama Republican Sen. Richard Shelby “about the runoff.”

“I think that’s the right way to do it. I’m just going to wait for him,” he said. “I know how he feels about it. I think he feels the same way I do.”

Read more from The Hill.

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