Donald Trump has not officially announced a 2024 presidential run, but it appears that he may be building a “campaign in waiting.”
According to Politico, Trump insiders have said he’s started the process of considering possible running mates.
“A lot of times, a presidential candidate will pick a running mate to balance out wings of the party. But with Trump, that’s not the issue. He is the party, basically. It’s so united behind him,” said John McLaughlin, one of Trump’s campaign pollsters. “So his choice, if he runs, will come down to what he wants. It would be a much more personal decision this time.”
“They’re all begging me. They all come here,” One adviser, who spoke anonymously with Politico, said Trump told them.
“Once you get past those two issues — loyalty and Trump going more with his gut — Trump has a lot of leeway in who he would pick,” said Tony Fabrizio, Trump’s lead pollster in 2016 and 2020.
“He’s not necessarily looking to balance the ticket geographically, but what he can do is pick to balance gender, race, ethnicity — a lot of different lanes there,” said Fabrizio, who is polling for a Trump-affiliated super PAC. “It could be everything from a Tim Scott in South Carolina to an Asian American in California, somebody Hispanic in Texas. There are so many choices and paths. And there’s lots of time to go.”
The report from Politico, which is based on information from Trump insiders, suggests a few names are high on the list:
According to the new Politico Article, the following people are high on Trump’s VP Shortlist:— Bush41Fan (@Patton41Fan) November 29, 2021
– Mike Pompeo
– Tim Scott
– Marsha Blackburn
– Kim Reynolds
– Kristi Noem
– Mark Meadows
Those familiar with Trump’s thinking say his prospective vice president selection would likely draw from three general lanes of candidates: women, conservatives of color or a trusted adviser — or a “consigliere,” as one adviser described it.
Scott, the first elected Black senator from the South since the Reconstruction era, recently met with Trump in Palm Beach.
Within Trump’s orbit, there is a belief that a Black running mate could eat into Democratic margins in key swing states, and that Hispanic voters are showing more signs of being up for grabs — especially in crucial battlegrounds like Arizona, Nevada, Florida, and Texas.
“It was a really warm interaction,” said one Republican observer in the room. “Scott was appropriately deferential without being gross, like some people are. What he said was thoughtful, and it was appreciated by the president. There was definitely chemistry there.”
The source also told Politico that Trump may choose a woman running mate, such as Iowa Gov. Kim Reynolds or Tennessee Sen. Marsha Blackburn.
“Reynolds and Blackburn are definitely in the hunt,” the source added.