Republicans are widely believed to be favorites to win at least one chamber of Congress in the fall, between President Joe Biden's struggling approval ratings and the historical trends of the opposition party gaining seats in midterm years weighed against Democrats' already razor-thin margins in the House and Senate.
But on Wednesday, POLITICO Playbook outlined an ongoing risk for Republicans that could lead to them stumbling in the midterm: President Donald Trump jumping back into the ring.
"One of the few ways Republicans could potentially blow this electoral equivalent of a layup is if former President Donald Trump suddenly returns to center court," reported Ryan Lizza, Rachel Bade, and Eugene Daniels. "Trump is not toxic for his party everywhere. Republicans did better than expected in House races in 2020 because of the high MAGA turnout Trump generated. But he’s deadly for the GOP in the decisive suburbs at the heart of 2022 politics. Recall how Virginia’s Glenn Youngkin treated Trump like Voldemort, concerned that even uttering his name would repel potential supporters in NoVa."
Trump has already made a series of endorsements in Republican primary races around the country, although some of those candidates are struggling to raise money.
All of this comes as Trump appears likely to try to run a rematch with Biden, which has Republican officials worried about their prospects for the next presidential election.