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Photo: Joe Raedle/Getty Images

The National Republican Senatorial Committee named former President Trump as the inaugural recipient of its "Champion for Freedom" award on Monday.

Why it matters: The award from Senate Republicans' campaign arm was presented the same weekend that Trump tore into Minority Leader Mitch McConnell at a Republican event at Mar-a-Lago, calling him a "dumb son of a b*tch" and "stone cold loser."

  • Trump owes McConnell for many of his legislative victories and historic rate of judicial appointments, but the two Republican leaders have not spoken since McConnell condemned the former president for inciting the Jan. 6 Capitol insurrection.
  • Trump has also vowed to campaign against some incumbent Senate Republicans, including GOP whip John Thune (S.D.) and Sen. Lisa Murkowski (Alaska).

The big picture: Trump remains the most popular figure in the GOP, despite clear divisions with McConnell and other establishment Republicans. He's been actively releasing 2022 endorsements and will likely play a major role in GOP primaries for years to come.

  • The NRSC said the award is for "conservative leaders who have worked tirelessly to create good jobs, protect the values that make our country great, and stop the Democrats' socialist agenda."
  • It was presented to Trump by NRSC chairman Rick Scott, a Florida senator and possible 2024 presidential candidate who has straddled a line between loyalty to both Trump and McConnell.

What they're saying: "Throughout his administration, [Trump] made clear his commitment to getting government out of the way of people's success, paving the way for American families and job creators to reach new heights," Scott said in a statement.

  • "President Trump fought for American workers, secured the border, and protected our constitutional rights. We are grateful for his service to our country and are honored to present him with the NRSC's first Champion for Freedom award."

Go deeper

Hutchinson says GOP should go "back to our principles" after reports of Trump tirade

Arkansas Gov. Asa Hutchinson said Sunday that the GOP should get "back to our principles," following reports that Former President Trump bashed Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell as a “dumb son of a bitch” at a Republican National Committee retreat on Saturday.

Between the lines: Trump went after a slew of Republicans, including McConnell and his wife, former Transportation Secretary Elaine Chao, for not backing him during his impeachment trial in February, per Politico.

Apr 10, 2021 - Politics & Policy

Scoop: Ohio Senate candidate Josh Mandel escorted out of RNC retreat

Ohio Republican Senate candidate Josh Mandel. Photo: Chris Maddaloni / Getty Images

During this weekend’s highly anticipated donor retreat hosted by the Republican National Committee in Palm Beach, Ohio Senate candidate Josh Mandel was escorted off the premises while his primary opponent, Jane Timken, was allowed to stay, two sources with direct knowledge of the situation tell Axios.

What we’re hearing: The invitation-only event is taking place at the Four Seasons Resort, and the RNC reserved the entire hotel. While Timken, former Ohio GOP chair, was invited to the event “because she is a major donor” — Mandel was not, so he was asked to leave, according to one of the sources.

Scoop: Trump campaign boosted by unsuspecting state GOPs

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

Federal regulators are probing financial reporting discrepancies stemming from an effort to funnel $75 million through state Republican parties to the national GOP effort to reelect Donald Trump, Axios has learned.

Why it matters: In comments to Axios and filings with the Federal Election Commission, some state party officials seemed unaware of their roles.