Rep. Dan Crenshaw faced the wrath of fellow conservatives including Newsmax host Michelle Malkin for calling out a Georgia lawyer who recommended Republican voters skip next month’s Senate contests.
Mr. Crenshaw, a Texas Republican and former Navy SEAL, shared a video on social media Thursday showing the attorney, L. Lin Wood, suggesting fellow Georgians boycott the upcoming special elections.
“They have not earned your vote. Don’t you give it to them. Why would you go back and vote in another rigged election, for God’s sake?” Mr. Wood said in the video Mr. Crenshaw shared on Twitter.
“Lin Wood is a Democrat that wants Republicans to self-destruct,” Mr. Crenshaw said in the Twitter post. “He just wants your donations for his legal fees. He’s a grifter.”
Ms. Malkin, a conservative blogger who started the Twitchy website, replied to that post by referring to the eye patch Mr. Crenshaw wears as a result of losing an eye fighting in Afghanistan.
“Dan Crenshaw is a globalist John McCain in an eyepatch who loves to party hardy while our country burns,” Ms. Malkin tweeted. “PROTECT OUR ELECTION SYSTEM & OUR COUNTRY, NOT THE GOP SWAMP!”
Rep. Eric Swalwell, California Democrat, was quick to come to his Republican colleague’s defense on Twitter afterward.
“You’re sick,” Mr. Swalwell said about Ms. Malkin. “@DanCrenshawTX served our country in war and now public office. What have you done?”
Ms. Malkin was hardly the only conservative to rip Mr. Crenshaw for suggesting Republicans ignore Mr. Wood’s suggestion they refrain from voting in the upcoming Senate runoffs.
“Lin Wood is doing more to defend America now than you have ever done in elected office,” Lauren Witzke, a Maine Republican who formerly ran for the U.S. Senate, said to Mr. Crenshaw on Twitter.
“I think we all know who the real Democrat is,” gun-rights activist Kaitlin Bennett said to Mr. Crenshaw in another tweet subsequently shared, or retweeted, several hundred times.
Georgia’s two U.S. Senate seats are up for grabs on Jan. 5. Republican incumbents Kelly Loeffler and David Perdue face Democratic challengers Raphael Warnock and Jon Ossoff, respectively.
Mr. Wood is among President Trump’s supporters who allege his race for reelection was marred by purported fraud and is suing to stop Democratic challenger Joseph R. Biden from becoming president.
He made the remarks about the Georgia race Wednesday in Atlanta. Mr. Trump’s campaign attacked him on Twitter hours later by sharing a Breitbart article touting his past donations to Democrats.
Mr. Wood responded to the Breitbart article by calling it “dishonest.” He described himself as historically nonpartisan but added he recently gave hundreds of thousands to a pro-Trump super PAC.
He added in another tweet Thursday that he has lost respect for Mr. Crenshaw, citing what he called false personal attacks and his failure to support Mr. Trump against supposed election rigging.
Leaders of federal law enforcement and security agencies have said they found no evidence of fraud in the recent White House race that would have altered its outcome. Inauguration Day is Jan. 20.