Although the inauguration of President-elect Joe Biden and Vice president-elect Kamala Harris is less than two months away, President Donald Trump is unlikely to have a low profile after he leaves the White House. Perhaps Trump will launch a right-wing media outlet to compete with Fox News, and perhaps he will run for president again in 2024. Journalist Charlotte Klein, in a Vanity Fair article, examines the latter possibility.
Klein explains, "As Donald Trump's efforts to overturn the election he lost to Joe Biden seem increasingly unlikely to succeed, the president and those in his orbit are apparently looking ahead — possibly to 2024…. Given Trump's erratic tendencies, some confidants [have] emphasized that the president has yet to make a final decision on the matter but noted that announcing a 2024 bid would help Trump maintain a presence in Republican politics and ensure loyalty prior to another presidential run."
The Vanity Fair journalist quotes Sam Nunberg, a former Trump adviser, as saying, "It would be a fool's errand to declare you're running for president at the end of this year. But on the other hand, to keep your hold over the party and fight Republican legacy hierarchy so that they can't erase you from history, it's important to remain a front-runner in this process."
Klein notes that the Washington Post reported, "One adviser who recently spoke with the president said that Trump told him he planned to announce a new campaign in three weeks, and that he wanted to act quickly to try to freeze the large field of prospective 2024 Republican presidential candidates."
Republicans who have been mentioned as possible 2024 presidential candidates, according to Klein, range from Vice President Mike Pence to Secretary of State Mike Pompeo to Nikki Haley, former U.S. ambassador to the United Nations and ex-governor of South Carolina. Conservative strategist Rick Wilson, known for his scathing anti-Trump commentary, has speculated that the president's son, Donald Trump, Jr., will be the likely nominee in 2024 if his father doesn't run — and another name that has been mentioned is Fox News' Tucker Carlson.
A senior Trump campaign staffer told the Post, "We could find ourselves deep into a 2024 election cycle, into mid-2023, and (Donald Trump, Sr.) still hasn't definitely said he's not running — and you're just going to see all these 2024 potential contenders uncertain about what to do."