(UnitedVoice.com) – Former President Donald Trump announced his fourth bid for the White House from the ballroom of his Mar-a-Lago retreat shortly after the 2022 midterm elections, unofficially kicking off the 2024 presidential primary contest. “This is not just a campaign,” he told the cheering crowd, “this is a quest to save our country.” However, he remained relatively quiet for the remainder of the year.
On Saturday, January 28, the former president hit the campaign trail for the first time since his announcement, visiting the early primary states of New Hampshire and South Carolina.
Trump leads his closest rival, Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis (R), by double digits in three recent polls asking about a hypothetical Republican primary. Nevertheless, he’s gathering the troops for the 2024 race.
Trump Gathers Supporters for His 2024 Primary Campaign
Although Trump didn’t campaign in 2022, he did pick up key backers before the end of the year. For instance, Veterans for America First proudly announced its endorsement “of the greatest president in history, Donald J. Trump,” on November 15, 2022. Likewise, Sen. Tommy Tuberville (R-AL) posted a statement on his Twitter page on November 17, announcing his endorsement of the former president.
He’s the leader America needs in 2024. That’s why I’m proud to endorse Donald J. Trump for President of the United States! pic.twitter.com/9EkSgIF680
— Tommy Tuberville (@TTuberville) November 18, 2022
Sen. J.D. Vance (R-OH) announced his support for Trump’s campaign without using the word “endorse” in an op-ed piece published by The Wall Street Journal on January 31. Vance wrote that he was “supporting [Trump] for president… because he’s the only person” who can disrupt the “failed consensus” surrounding America’s foreign and economic policies.
Likewise, POLITICO recently published an article discussing Sen. Eric Schmitt’s (R-MO) backing of the former president’s campaign. “He’s very popular in Missouri… He has my support,” Schmitt stated.
On February 1, Newsweek reported that Trump picked up endorsements over the weekend from Senator Lindsey Graham (R-SC) and Governor Henry McMaster (R-SC)
Former Arizona gubernatorial Kari Lake (R) also appeared to join the growing list of endorsees with a February 1 tweet that succinctly read, “Trump 2024.”
— Kari Lake (@KariLake) February 1, 2023
The former president and his team are actively working to secure future endorsements by backing Republican candidates like Rep. Jim Banks (R-IN), who recently announced his 2024 campaign for US Senate. He posted a screenshot of Trump’s endorsement on his Twitter account, calling him the “greatest president in [his] lifetime.”
Addressing Potential Challengers
At the same time he’s gathering support, Trump is speaking out against his potential rivals. Conservative radio host Hugh Hewitt aired an interview with Trump on February 2.
Hewitt asked Trump about former South Carolina governor and United Nations Ambassador Nikki Haley (R), who recently indicated she plans to announce her 2024 campaign on February 15. Trump said she recently called him, and he told Haley to follow her heart. However, later in the interview, he called her “overly ambitious.”
Trump also indicated that he considers Gov. Glenn Youngkin (R-VA) and former Secretary of State and CIA Director Mike Pompeo (R) ungrateful. He made similar remarks about DeSantis and Haley as well.
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