During a meeting of the Huntsville Republican Women Tuesday, Republican U.S. Senate candidate Jessica Taylor dropped out of the Senate race and announced that she was endorsing Mike Durant. 

On Thursday, the Durant campaign began running a radio ad promoting the Taylor endorsement.

In the commercial, Taylor says:

“Hey, y’all this is Jessica Taylor your full-throttle conservative fighter. I got in the U.S. Senate race because all I saw running were career politicians, but then I met Blackhawk helicopter pilot and Army veteran Mike Durant, and I’ve decided Mike Durant is the political outsider we need to beat those career politicians, so I am endorsing him.”

“Mike Durant is a fighter, literally, a decorated combat veteran and American hero who will put Alabama first, who will drain the swamp of the corrupt career politicians who hate President Trump and his America First agenda, and I know Mike’s values. He is a pro-life Christian who will stand up for the rights of the unborn.”

“We don’t need another career politician in Washington. We need a pro-Trump conservative with the guts to take on the Establishment. This is Jessica Taylor asking y’all to vote for Mike Durant for U.S. Senate.” 

Durant is a decorated helicopter pilot who is best known for having been shot down, wounded, and taken captive in Mogadishu, Somalia during the “Blackhawk Down” incident in Oct. 1993, part of Operation Gothic Serpent. Durant later wrote a book about the incident that was used as the basis for the movie.

Durant, age 60, was born in Berlin, New Hampshire. He is married to former Army helicopter pilot Lisa. They have one child together and he has two children from his first marriage as well as three stepchildren.

After leaving the armed forces, Durant relocated to the Huntsville area and started an aerospace company. Durant has transferred ownership of his company, which has contracts with the Department of Defense, to his employees in order to run for Senate.

Taylor owns a business that assists individuals, businesses, local governments, and nonprofit groups write and apply for grants. Taylor ran for Congress in 2020 in Alabama’s Second Congressional District finishing third in the GOP primary. She is a mother of three and was formerly married to former State Sen. Bryan Taylor (R).

Even after Taylor’s exit, Durant faces stiff competition from former Business Council of Alabama President and CEO Katie Boyd Britt and Congressman Mo Brooks (R-AL05). Karla Dupriest, Jack Schafer and Mike Dunn have also announced their candidacies in the race. Republican qualifying will continue through Jan. 28 at 5:00 p.m. At this point, former Brighton Mayor Brandaun Dean is the only announced Democratic candidate for the U.S. Senate.

The Republican primary will be on May 24.