'Not something I particularly want': Trump's previous GOP rivals want nothing to do with him in 2024
Ted Cruz, Donald Trump, Marco Rbio in 2016 (Photo by Jim Watson for AFP)

With Gov. Ron DeSantis (R-FL) still sitting on the sidelines and teasing a run for the Republican Party's 2024 presidential nomination, the only credible threat to Donald Trump's coronation is former U.N. Ambassador Nikki Haley's announced run.

That is because Republicans who took their shot in 2016 seem to have no desire to tangle with the former president again.

As the New York Times notes, key Republicans like Sens. Marco Rubio (R-FL), Ted Cruz (R-TX) and former Gov. Jeb Bush (R-FL) aren't even hinting at jumping into the race, possibly because they are still licking their wounds over how Trump trampled their hopes and dreams seven years ago during the GOP's primary season.

According to the Times, "For all of the chatter about how the former president has grown weak politically and is ripe for overthrowing as the Republican Party’s dominant figure, and for all the polling that shows large numbers of Republican voters would prefer that Mr. Trump not run again, the will to challenge him is small, and the few contenders brave enough so far are inexperienced on the national stage."

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However, as weak as the former president has grown, none of his formal rivals seem like they relish round two in what is shaping up to be a bruising battle for the Republican Party's future.

"The relatively small size of the prospective 2024 field of Trump challengers, with several potential candidates dragging their feet on entering the race, may have something to do with the debasing experience of the Republicans who battled him in 2016 and came away with nothing to show for it but insulting sobriquets like Low-Energy Jeb, Lyin’ Ted and Liddle Marco," wrote the Times's Maggie Haberman and Reid j. Epstein.

Former surgeon Ben Carson, who went on to work in the Trump administration as housing secretary that only lasted four years, begged off and suggested it would take divine intervention to convince him to take another stab -- and even then he would balk.

“I will always do what God wants me to do, but I hope that’s not it,” he explained. “It’s not something I particularly want.”

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Carson also admitted his heart wasn't in it in 2016, telling the Times, "I didn’t particularly want to do it then. There were so many pushing me to do it. I said, ‘If people really want me to, I will,’ but it was never anything that I wanted to do. I certainly don’t want to do it now.”

The report adds that most possible challengers from 2016 --many of them way younger than the 76-year-old Trump -- may be biding their time until 2028 when he likely will not be running and therefore see no reason to go up against him next year and be subject to his abuse.

"Republicans eyeing 2024 appear to see less to gain. They are well aware of Mr. Trump’s cutthroat political approach and his impulse to tear down in personal terms anyone he sees as a threat — even if those traits helped win him the undying loyalty of many Republican voters and created a cult of personality that has at times consumed his party," the Times is reporting.

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