Trump Endorses 'Eric' for Senate Hours Before Missouri GOP Primary — There Are 3 Erics on the Ballot

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Eric Schmitt, Eric Greitens, Eric McElroy
Eric Schmitt, Eric Greitens, Eric McElroy

Michael M. Santiago/Getty; Laurie Skrivan/St. Louis Post-Dispatch/Tribune News Service via Getty; Eric Mcelroy For U. S. Senate/Facebook From left: Eric Schmitt, Eric Greitens, Eric McElroy

Former President Donald Trump finally waded in to Tuesday's heated Senate primary in Missouri, offering his coveted endorsement of "Eric" in a Monday night statement. There was only one problem — there are three Erics running for the seat.

"I trust the Great People of Missouri, on this one, to make up their own minds, much as they did when they gave me landslide victories in the 2016 and 2020 Elections, and I am therefore proud to announce that ERIC has my Complete and Total Endorsement!" Trump wrote.

It was unclear if Trump's statement was an endorsement of former Missouri Gov. Eric Greitens, current Missouri Attorney General Eric Schmitt, or Eric McElroy — all of whom are running in the primary — and his spokesperson told NBC News "the endorsement speaks for itself."

RELATED: Missouri's Senate Primary on Tuesday Will Test the Values of the State's Beleaguered Republican Party

Greitens and Schmitt, believed to be the two frontrunners, each claimed the endorsement for himself.

"I'm proud to be endorsed by President Donald J. Trump for the US Senate in Missouri," Greitens wrote.

Schmitt echoed the gratitude, writing, "I'm grateful for President Trump's endorsement."

It remains unclear whether Trump actually wanted to offer a specific endorsement of either man, or if his plan was to offer blanket support so he could say he endorsed the winner all along. But Greitens has been endorsed by others in the MAGA circle, including Donald Trump Jr. and his girlfriend, Kimberly Guilfoyle, who said in a video Greitens is "a true patriot who puts America first."

Schmitt, the state's attorney general, has recently been leading in polls ahead of Greitens. He has seemingly benefitted from the controversy surrounding the former governor, who has in recent years been hit with allegations of blackmail related to an extramarital affair — which he denies — and allegations of domestic abuse by his ex-wife.

RELATED: Missouri Gov. Eric Greitens Accused of Unwanted Sexual Advances, Abuse in Government Report

Greitens, a former Navy SEAL, was also indicted in 2017 on a felony charge of computer tampering, following claims that he improperly took a donor list from his nonprofit veterans group to help his political campaign. Then, in 2018, was indicted on a felony invasion of privacy charge related to allegations that he had tried to blackmail a woman with whom he had the affair (both of those charges were later dropped).

In March 2022, Greitens ex-wife, Sheena Greitens, accused her ex-husband of "unstable and coercive behavior" that included "physical violence" toward their two young children in an affidavit filed in an ongoing child custody dispute.

The former governor released a statement on Twitter at the time, calling his ex-wife's claims "completely fabricated, baseless allegations."

RELATED: Former Missouri Gov. Eric Greitens Slammed for 'RINO Hunting' Senate Campaign Ad: 'This Is Sociopathic'

Schmitt, who has been leading the polls, has faced his own criticism from opponents for filing dozens of lawsuits against Missouri cities and school districts over their pandemic precautions, such as mask mandates.

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McElroy, meanwhile, a comedian and author who has been lagging in the polls, hasn't weighed in on the Trump endorsement — though some other Republicans have.

U.S. Rep. Vicky Hartzler, the third Republican frontrunner in the race, issued a statement to the St. Louis Post-Dispatch saying, "Congrats to Eric McElroy. He's having a big night."