Thu. Jul 18th, 2024

Trump focused on Doug Burgum, JD Vance and Marco Rubio as VP search enters home stretch

By 37ci3 Jun21,2024

As former President Donald Trump zeroed in on at one point running mate of the vice presidenttwo top finalists emerge: North Dakota Gov. Doug Burgum and Sen. JD Vance Ohio State.

In interviews with NBC News, more than a dozen sources involved in the process described the intensifying debate over the strengths and weaknesses each candidate would bring to the ticket.

A third perspective, Sen. Marco Rubio The dispute with Florida State is ongoing, sources said. But doubts about his enthusiasm for the job and concerns about a constitutional suspension requiring Trump or Rubio to establish residency in another state continue to threaten his chances.

Trump has publicly said he expects to announce his choice on or near the Republican National Convention, which begins on July 15 in Milwaukee. However, three sources familiar with the discussions said timing remains a topic of discussion.

One option is for Trump to announce days earlier – right after the July 11 verdict 34 felonies — to quickly bypass the harmful news cycle.

However, one source said the choice could come either before Trump’s sentencing or in an effort to raise money divorced from the convention, both of which expect significant donations from allies. Another source said the script didn’t fear her legal troubles would quickly drown out news of her running mate’s revelation.

The campaign’s vice presidential debates have been heavily guarded and, given Trump’s love of the element of surprise, could suddenly veer in other directions.

“As President Trump himself has said, the primary criterion for selecting a vice president is a strong leader who will be a great president for eight years after the end of the next four-year term,” Brian Hughes, Trump’s senior campaign adviser, said in a statement. “But anyone who tells you they know who or when President Trump will pick for vice president is lying, unless that person’s name is Donald J. Trump.”

A source familiar with the search said the internal tension and indecision was about balancing the desire for a man who could be considered the future of Trump’s movement with the desire for a non-threatening running mate. The source added that the tension has continued throughout the campaign, including with Trump.

Burgum, Vance and Rubio have also been there It’s at the top of Trump’s short list It’s been weeks, as first reported by NBC News. But with the convention now less than a month away, speculation — some idle, some informed — has run rampant among those anxiously awaiting Trump’s decision, from public hearings to behind-the-scenes maneuvering.

Other candidates previously viewed as prospects, including Sen. Tim Scott of South Carolina and Rep. Elise Stefanik of New York, may remain on the periphery of contention but are not discussed with the same intensity as Burgum, Vance or Rubio, sources said.

On Thursday, Burgum campaigned on behalf of Trump in battleground Michigan, while Vance appeared with Trump at a fundraiser in Cleveland. A source in the room said the audience applauded when Trump asked if he should choose Vance as his running mate.

Rubio spoke at Trump’s birthday party in West Palm Beach, Florida, last week. His rocky past with Trump has also resurfaced since they ran against each other for the GOP presidential nomination in 2016, with a person close to Trump reinforcing Rubio’s history of negative comments to him in recent weeks, according to a person familiar with the matter.

Steve Bannon, Trump’s former chief White House strategist and a popular podcast host among GOP voters, listed Burgum, Vance and Stefanik among the “top-level people working hard” to get elected.

“Unlike 2016 [there is a] deep bench of talent,” Bannon said. “Looks like the Cabinet is shaping up. There’s going to be a lot of consolation prizes for these killers.”

Burgum was largely unknown outside of North Dakota a year ago began his long-term presidential campaignproving himself in everything, he partially rose to the top.

He appeared with increasing frequency on right-leaning talk shows At Trump’s rallies and GOP chicken dinners. He went to New York twice for Trump’s trial on charges of falsifying documents, which ended with convictions on all counts last month. Next week, Burgum will headline a “video conference” for Trump, where the cost is $25,000 to participate in a question-and-answer session via Zoom, according to an invitation obtained by NBC News.

Burgum impressed Trump with his loyalty, looks and money. He was the first of Trump’s most reliable primary rivals to endorse him, and he has central casting as the dashing businessman-turned-governor who once sold his software company in a billion-dollar stock deal.

The arguments about Burgum are mostly about Trump: The former president enjoys spending time with the governor, Burgum is unlikely to ever overtake him, and Burgum’s struggles to get through the primaries suggest he won’t be a compelling successor. Trump in the last years of the second administration.

With few cues coming directly from Trump, Republicans are reading the tea leaves from his allies. Roger Stone, a longtime Trump adviser, posed for Burgum last week — a short break efforts to promote his first choiceFormer Hawaii Democratic Representative Tulsi Gabbard.

“I … really like @GovDougBurgum,” Stone Posted in X after he and Burgum spoke at a GOP event in Florida.

Burgum tells colleagues he “just hopes there’s room for him” in the Trump administration, a person who spoke to him recently said. But, the person added, Burgum’s behavior “thinks he has a big shot” at the VP slot.

Vance, who has also litigated and maintained a steady TV presence and chaired several Trump fundraisers, has something no other candidate has: a member of the Trump family publicly defending him.

Donald Trump Jr., the former president’s eldest son, nominated Vance for the position on his podcast last month and in New York Post interview in March (whose editorial board this week He approved my drill).

“I defended you for all the reasons you talked about,” Trump Jr. said in a podcast interview with Vance. “I really want to see a JD Vance-Kamala Harris vice presidential debate. “I think there are other wonderful people who can be vice president.”

Trump Jr., who is close to Vance, regularly retweets her on social media. While other family members, notably former first lady Melania Trump, may have had an equal or greater influence on the selection, Vance drew attention to another of Trump’s sons, Eric, and his wife, Lara, who co-chairs the Republican National Committee. There are both reposted it or shared his television appearances with their social media following in recent weeks — something they haven’t done for Burgum or Rubio.

There is Rubio, an attractive and perhaps more traditional option because of his potential appeal to Hispanic voters, suburban women and the older conservative Republicans who ran the party 12 years ago when he was a finalist to be Mitt Romney’s running mate.

But Rubio, unlike Burgum and Vance, never appeared in court for Trump’s criminal trial. (His team did not respond to a request for comment about why he didn’t go.) The residency issue Given the nuances of the Electoral College, which does not allow electors to vote for a presidential and vice presidential candidate from the same state, it may be more difficult than it appears on paper. And a thought-provoking comment about Rubio Trump’s “small hands” It’s the kind of schoolyard jester who doesn’t want to reward Trump with such a plum offer during the 2016 presidential election.

Rubio’s case could be helped by his relationships with Susie Wiles, Trump’s top campaign strategist, and other Florida GOP politicians who worked on or worked closely with Trump’s campaign. Rubio still has champions in Trump’s orbit.

“Marco is 100% in the game,” said a Republican operative in Florida. “Right now, I’d have to call JD Vance the favorite, but if residency wasn’t an issue, I’m pretty sure Marco would be the guy.”

A source who spoke with Trump about the search for a running mate described the residency factor as an issue that would be easy to resolve while Rubio moved. The source added that Rubio was effective in defending Trump on television during the trial, which was as valuable to Trump as attending in person.

“Trump saw him on TV night after night, including the night of his conviction,” the source said. “If he sees you on TV, he doesn’t need to see you in court.”

The source added that Burgum would be better suited to the Cabinet. Vance, 39, has a “big future,” but “Trump needs fighters in the Senate.”

These and other considerations are part of the calculation in Burgum and Vance’s evaluation. Both have a record of criticizing Trump.

Burgum has in recent weeks walked back comments he made in an interview last year NBC News’ “Meet the Press” he said he wouldn’t do business with Trump because “it’s important that you’re judged by the company you keep.” one Interview on Fox News this weekBurgum said, “I just really got to know [Trump] as a person” after spending more time with him on the campaign trail this year.

Vance on record vote for independent Evan McMullin 2016 has a particularly long term for the presidency The history of Trump’s beating. But he has since said Trump has proven him wrong, and that much of the criticism has been aired by opponents during his 2022 Senate campaign — a race in which Trump backed him in a crowded GOP primary. Many ardent followers of Trump’s Make America Great Again movement have embraced Vance as one of their own.

“JD is the only person in the final three — Rubio, Burgum, JD Vance — who is a popular elected official on that blue wall, and he’s also under 40,” noted Trump supporter Charlie Kirk of Vance’s Midwest. primary and potential appeal to young voters, he said in an interview with NBC News last week. “So I’m on Team Vance.”

Others see fundraising as Vance’s weakness. National Republicans have poured tens of millions of dollars into his 2022 Senate race, trailing Vance was struggling to adapt his Democratic opponent’s fundraising. Two sources questioned whether Vance’s far-right politics could be a turnoff for more establishment-minded donors.

“A lot of donors who resisted everything but now generally support Trump don’t understand Vance’s logic,” said a source close to donors.

Vance tried to demonstrate a stronger fundraising ability. The Silicon Valley event, which recently launched with a $5 million goal, raised $12 million, a source familiar with the fundraiser said.

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By 37ci3

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