- Trump is asking advisors about how he can attack ex-Cabinet members who might run for president in 2024, per the WaPo.
- While Trump has not yet launched a candidacy, he continues to eye Republicans who may run against him.
- Trump could potentially face former VP Mike Pence and ex-Secretary of State Mike Pompeo in a GOP primary.
President Donald Trump has been teasing a 2024 presidential campaign since he left the White House last year, but despite nothing being set in stone, he has still been looking intently at fellow GOP politicians who are laying the groundwork for candidacies of their own.
According to The Washington Post, Trump and his circle of political allies are preparing themselves for Republicans who would be most likely to compete against him for the party nomination — including GOP figures who were once part of his administration.
Several Trump advisors have pleaded with him to hold off on announcing a possible campaign until after the 2022 midterm elections, as they feel Democrats will tie GOP candidates to the polarizing former president in a cycle where the party hopes to regain one or both chambers of Congress.
While it may have been inconceivable in the past that any Republican would challenge Trump, several GOP candidates are likely to make the argument that a new generation of leadership should build on what the former president accomplished in office.
But the former president is already thinking of how to counter any arguments against his candidacy.
Per The Post, Trump has been asking his advisors about how he can go after former Cabinet members and political allies who may decide to run — as well as Republican figures that he has backed in the past — in assessing ways to handle his potential competitors if he launched a White House bid.
Two advisors told The Post that a candidacy by Gov. Ron DeSantis of Florida would be an issue, given his high level of popularity with a vast segment of Trump’s Make America Great Again political base.
Former Vice President Mike Pence, who was Trump’s No. 2, declined to rule out running against Trump for the GOP nomination in a recent New York Times interview.
“We’ll go where we’re called,” he told the newspaper, saying he would rely on his faith to help guide him toward a decision. “That’s the way Karen and I have always approached these things.”
Former Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, who served under Trump and is mulling a presidential bid, told several people he was willing to run against the former president but his decision was not set in stone, per The Post.