According to former White House press secretary Jen Psaki, Democrats and Republicans should not undervalue the influence of Donald Trump’s “evil charisma,” which might help him secure the Republican presidential nomination.
Why it’s important Republicans are reevaluating Trump’s position as the face of the party in the wake of the midterm elections’ failures and ongoing scandals. Trump, who has been twice impeached and is currently the subject of a criminal investigation, officially launched his 2024 presidential campaign in November.
Who is the alternative, according to Psaki, is the crucial query to pose during the primaries.
“Democrats and sane Republicans underestimate Trump at their own peril because in order for Trump not to win the nomination, there has to be a better alternative,” she said adding, “That’s how primaries work.”
Psaki drew analogies to Mike Pence, who “didn’t exactly light the world on fire politically” until he aligned with Trump and Ron DeSantis, a foe of Trump’s who is considered as “either the savior or he’s currently at his peak”
Yes, but there may be a softening in President Trump’s core GOP support. According to recent polls, his support among Republicans is at its lowest level since he initially ran for president in 2016, according to Josh Kraushaar of Axios.
The big picture: The former president recently invited white nationalists and anti-Semites to his Mar-a-Lago residence and made a bogus claim about election fraud the day before Psaki’s remarks.
Trump, 76, is reportedly still the overwhelming favorite to win the Republican nomination in 2024, according to strategists and party officials.
However, the former president had a dubious track record with the candidates he backed in the midterm elections, and some attribute this to the fact that the Republicans were unable to take over both chambers of Congress.
Trump’s decision to run for president comes as legal disputes surrounding his alleged participation in the Capitol Hill attack on January 6, 2021, as well as his economic transactions, continue to rage.
Other than DeSantis and Pence there are a handful of other Republicans that could announce they are running for president in 2024.
Texas Governor Greg Abbott
In the midterm elections, Republican Texas Governor Greg Abbott defeated Democratic former U.S. Representative Beto O’Rourke with Trump’s support in his bid for a third four-year term.
During his second tenure, 65-year-old Abbott has adopted increasingly conservative policies and opposed COVID-19 vaccine and mask mandates. He is erecting a new barrier on the border with Mexico and enacted into law the most stringent abortion restriction of any state in the United States.
Despite persistent rumors to the contrary, Abbott has not officially addressed his alleged intention to run
Rep. Liz Cheney
The 56-year-old Republican U.S. Representative Liz Cheney has vowed to do all in her power to prevent Donald Trump from winning the presidency again and said she will soon decide whether to run for office herself.
She is the daughter of former vice president Dick Cheney and has been actively involved in the congressional investigation of the attack on the Capitol on January 6, 2021.
In August, a Trump-backed candidate defeated Cheney for the Republican Party’s nomination for Wyoming’s lone congressional seat because Cheney refused to “go along with President Trump’s lie about the 2020 election.”
Former U.N. Ambassador Nikki Haley
Haley, a former governor of South Carolina and the daughter of immigrants from India, held the position of ambassador to the UN, making her the most prominent woman in Trump’s Cabinet.
Haley, 50, a rising Republican star, has alternately kept Trump at a distance and in close proximity.
She publicly denounced him both during and after his 2016 campaign for president, stating his behavior following the election in 2020 will be “judged harshly by history.”
Later, when she referred to him as a friend who still had a part to play in the celebration, her tone softened. Haley hinted at a 2024 run in June, saying, “If there is a space for me,” then in October she stated she would think about it at the beginning of the following year.