The Republican Party is unequivocally split in supporting former President Trump in 2024, four weeks after announcing a third bid for the presidency.
Before Trump’s announcement, long-time Trump critic Gov. Larry Hogan, R-Md., revealed he was not supportive of the 2024 run. “It’s basically the third election in a row that Donald Trump has cost us the race, and it’s like, three strikes, you’re out,” Hogan said while appearing on CNN’s “State of the Union” with Dana Bash.
Lt. Gov. Winsome Sears, R-Va., also told Fox Business’ Neil Cavuto that despite some great results of the Trump presidency, she would not be supporting him in another run because “a house divided against itself cannot stand.”
“His administration, when it came to the economy, had helped us because Black unemployment was the lowest it had ever been,” Sears said, but added that, “the voters have spoken and said that they want a different leader.”
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“I could not support him. I just couldn’t,” the lieutenant governor told Cavuto.
When asked about Trump’s decision to run for president, retiring Sen. Richard Burr, R-N.C., told TIME magazine that he “could care less.”
The list goes on, with retiring GOP Sen. Pat Toomey of Pennsylvania, whose open seat was picked up by Democrat Lt. Gov. John Fetterman, said he believes a Trump nomination would not end well for the GOP. “It’s just one more data point in an overwhelming body of data that the Trump obsession is very bad for Republicans, but normal Republicans are doing extremely well,” Toomey told CNN.
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“And if there’s someone not named Trump, my guess is we win the White House,” former Speaker of the House Paul Ryan told Jonathan Karl on ABC’s “This Week.”
While there appears to be a growing disconnect with Trump within the Republican Party, there are several elected Republicans that remain loyal to the former president. Rep. Elise Stefanik, R-N.Y., was one of the first Republicans to announced that she will be backing Trump next cycle.
“I am proud to endorse Donald J. Trump for President in 2024,” Stefanik said. “It is time for Republicans to unite around the most popular Republican in America, who has a proven track record of conservative governance.”
Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick, R-Texas, Richard Hudson, R-N.C., and Rep. Madison Cawthorn also joined Stefanik in supporting Trump.
“I will follow this man to the day I die, barring some terrible information,” said Cawthorn in an Instagram video posted the night of Trump’s announcement. “I want a president who people are terrified of, who’s gonna push people out of the way when he’s walking up because he’s the United States of freakin’ America, and he represents every single one of us.”
“President Trump is the candidate the Democrats fear the most in 2024,” Patrick wrote in a Facebook post.
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“The difference between President Donald Trump and Joe Biden could not be more stark, which is why I look forward to enthusiastically supporting Donald Trump’s bid for the White House,” said Wesley Hunt, the incoming House Republican who recently won the race in Texas’ 38th Congressional District, said in a statement.
Texas’ Attorney General Ken Paxton also announced his endorsement on Twitter. “I am proud to endorse his campaign for President so that he can once again put America First & heal our nation,” Paxton wrote.
Among those who openly voiced their stance on the controversial run, there are a few Republicans who are not dreading, nor ruling out Trump as the potential 2024 nominee.
While speaking to Fox News, just hours before Trump launched his 2024 campaign, Sen. Ted Crux, R-Texas., suggested the GOP primary will have several notable contenders, but that he would ultimately endorse Trump if he won the Republican nomination.
“We’re going to have a process, we’re going to have a primary, we’re going to have a debate,” Cruz said, also adding that if he were the GOP nominee, the senator would “enthusiastically support him.”
“If we narrow our focus there, then we’re not talking to every single American. Our job is not just to talk to people who love Trump or hate Trump. Our job is to talk to every single American,” Noem told The New York Times when asked about Trump’s 2024 run.
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