Why are Republicans worried about Donald Trump’s plan to announce his 2024 campaign next week?
A poor showing by Trump-endorsed candidates has Republicans and the former president’s inner circle calling for him to delay third White House bid.
Former President Trump may make his announcement that he is making a third run for the White House as soon as Tuesday. He is unwavering in his plans despite the failure of the “Red Wave” for the Republican party to materialize, in part due to the lackluster performance of Trump-backed candidates.
The setback at the ballot box along with the timing of the planned announcement has members of the GOP and Trump’s inner circle calling for him to put off doing so, or even at all. The reasons are several fold, not least because control of the Senate could come down to just one race not yet decided.
Why Republicans are worried about a Trump 2024 campaign announcement
The main reason Republicans are worried about Trump jumping into the presidential race next week is that voters have to return to the polls in Georgia to decide the runoff race for the state’s Senate seat. Neither Democratic incumbent Raphael Warnock nor his challenger Republican candidate Herschel Walker managed to get over 50 percent of the vote on 8 November triggering a second round of voting.
The tight race between the Trump-backed one-time football star and Warnock, who won his seat in a runoff two years ago against then place holder Senator Kelly Loeffler to finish out the term of Senator Johnny Isakson, will be decided 6 December. While the former president can rally crowds his polarization also brings out in force those opposed to him which could lead to a repeat of 2020.
“He stands to potentially muck up the opportunity for Walker to win in Georgia in his runoff,” New Hampshire Governor Chris Sununu said in a SiriusXM interview on Friday.
“Everything is about Herschel. I’ll be advising him to put it off until after the runoff,” said Jason Miller, a top adviser to Trump, the day after the Midterm elections. However, on Friday on Stephen Bannon’s radio show Miller said “President Trump is going to announce on Tuesday that he’s running for president. And it’s going to be a very professional, very buttoned-up announcement.”
Lengthy two-year campaign will bring Trump complications
While tossing his hat into the ring could bring some advantages like scaring off potential competitors and creating a situation where Republicans pledge loyalty to the de facto leader of the party or risk alienation by the MAGA wing of the party, it also brings risks and complications for the former president.
Trump is facing numerous legal battles including a civil suit in New York against his business, interfering with the 2020 election in Georgia and perhaps his greatest liability allegedly keeping White House documents, some of them classified, in his possession and failing to return them when asked. The latter resulted in the FBI raiding his Mar a Lago resort in Florida where agents recovered thousands of government documents, over 300 of them marked classified.
Currently, the Republican National Committee is covering Trump’s legal bills, but RNC Chairwoman Ronna McDaniel said that if he’s a declared candidate that will have to end. An announcement so early would also place campaign finance law restrictions on his Save America PAC. The amount of donations he could accumulate would be capped and Trump would be limited in how he could use that money.
Why the urgency for Trump to announce a 2024 presidential run?
Announcing almost two full years before the 2024 presidential election probably wouldn’t deter any of Trump’s most likely challengers. It could actually give them an opportunity to see where they could find an opening to challenge the one-term former president according to a former Trump campaign adviser.
So what’s the rush? Most likely his legal jeopardy with the Justice Department in order to get ahead of any indictment that he may be facing over his mishandling of classified information. If he were actively running for president, it would add a further layer of complication for DOJ when deciding on the indictment fearing that it would look politically motivated.
Not that having his hat in the ring would matter all that much though. Everything for the man who got mobs of supporters to chant “lock her up”, in reference to Hillary Clinton during and after the 2016 presidential race, along with his allies is called politically motivated when it suits them.
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