Former Rep. Jim Renacci (R-OH), who was one of former President Donald Trump's first GOP backers in his 2016 run for president, is telling The New Yorker's Isaac Chotiner that he's taking a wait-and-see approach to making an endorsement in the 2024 race.
During their conversation, Renacci said he believed Trump had become too polarizing, while also claiming that the former president demanded loyalty without offering any in return.
As evidence of this, he noted that Trump didn't help him in his unsuccessful effort to run a primary challenge against Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine last year.
"Well, it’s probably one of the problems with former President Trump," he said. "His loyalty doesn’t go two ways. I’ve seen that too often."
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"It was hard to predict that in 2016," Chotiner replied.
"Yeah, I did not realize that his loyalty is really one way," Renacci emphasized.
Chotiner then pressed Renacci about whether he believed there could be a connection between Trump's personal disloyalty to him and his attempt to overthrow the American republic to remain in power after losing the 2020 presidential election.
"Look, you said something very important there," he said. "The person who is so concerned about himself and not about the entire country and the country moving forward is one of the reasons he doesn’t have my support today. So, that’s the personal side. Remember, I a hundred per cent appreciate what he’s done for us. I’m happy that he jumped in the race in 2016. But when any person—it doesn’t have to be former President Donald Trump—when any person puts himself over the entire country, I do think that’s a flaw that makes me sit back and say, 'I want to see what candidates are in the race going forward.'"
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Renacci did say he would enthusiastically support Trump if he were the 2024 nominee, however.