Republican Who Lied About Military Record Drops 2024 Bid

JR Majewski exits race for Ohio's 9th Congressional District to be with ailing mom
By Arden Dier,  Newser Staff
Posted May 31, 2023 7:58 AM CDT
Republican Who Lied About Military Record Drops 2024 Bid
JR Majewski, Republican candidate for Ohio's 9th Congressional District, speaks at a campaign rally in Youngstown, Ohio, Sept. 17, 2022.   (AP Photo/Tom E. Puskar, File)

A Republican congressional candidate accused of misrepresenting his military record has dropped out of the race for Ohio's 9th Congressional District. Pro-Trump Republican JR Majewski cited his mother's ailing health in a statement that also revealed his father died during the last election cycle, when Majewski lost the district Republicans were favored in to Democratic Rep. Marcy Kaptur by 13 points, per Politico. The Air Force veteran who was at the US Capitol during the Jan. 6, 2021 insurrection, had been among Republican candidates who "put Trump's false claims of a stolen election front and center in their campaigns, helping them get through contested primaries but putting them at a disadvantage with independents in the general election," per NBC News.

His 2022 campaign was hit with an AP report revealing Majewski was barred from reenlisting in the Air Force after four years following a drunk driving incident on a US air base in Japan in 2001. The AP also found Majewski had repeatedly lied about being a "combat veteran" who served in Afghanistan. According to the report, Majewski never deployed to Afghanistan but spent six months loading and unloading aircraft in Qatar, a US ally. Majewski continued to claim that he served in Afghanistan and that his flights to the country were "classified." But "there's no junior enlisted air transportation specialist who was doing something so secret that 20 years later it still needs to be classified," countered a former Air Force master sergeant who investigates "stolen valor" cases.

The reports hurt Majewski's chances. But "others on the ground in the district complained about what they saw as a lazy and undisciplined campaign that failed to activate grassroots voters and take advantage of Kaptur's weaknesses," per NBC. Majewski launched his second attempt at the congressional seat in April, though House Republicans "were not eager to see Majewski try again," per Politico. "This is one of the hardest decisions I've ever had to make," the 42-year-old wrote in an email to supporters on Tuesday, announcing his decision to withdraw. He said his mother was due to undergo triple bypass surgery and he planned to help in her recovery. "But don't fret, I love this country too much to stay idle," he added, per the Daily Beast. (Read more Republican candidates stories.)

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