Republicans React to Trump’s Announcement to Run for President in 2024


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By Vanessa Hudson, Editor in Chief


Former President Donald Trump formally announced last month he would be running for president in 2024 after being impeached twice and losing the 2020 election. But some Republicans are ready for a new nominee.

Amid recent controversies such as dining with known white supremacist Nick Fuentes and rapper Ye, formerly known as Kanye West, and calling for the termination of the Constitution, Trump announced his 2024 presidential run on Nov. 15 saying, “In order to make America great and glorious again, I am tonight announcing my candidacy for president of the United States.”

A day before the anticipated announcement, nearly 100 Utah Republicans, including state senators Daniel McCay, Mike McKell and Todd Weiler, signed and released a statement encouraging Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis to run for president.

“We need a leader who will strengthen and unify the nation. Gov. Ron DeSantis serves his country and state well and skillfully navigated the many challenges Florida faced during his first term,” the statement read.

Republicans seem torn on whether Trump should continue to lead the GOP, or someone like DeSantis should take the nomination in 2024. 

University of Utah political science professor James Curry said Trump’s presence in the Republican party has not been great for the GOP and has become a liability for the party.

“Now, there are significant elements of the Republican Party who see Trump as an electoral liability,” he said. 

According to Curry, Trump-backed candidates have lost in races they were expected to win in the previous three election cycles. “There was a huge referendum on Trump in 2018 that saw Democrats sweep into control in the House of Representatives,” he said.

In the 2022 midterms, Republicans underperformed despite claims of a “red-wave.” “Trump hand-picked and endorsed many of the candidates who underperformed on the Republican side in 2022 races, including folks like Herschel Walker in Georgia, or Mehmet Oz in Pennsylvania,” said Curry.

Apart from being an electoral or political liability, Trump’s recent actions don’t help his case, according to Curry.

“​​These recent actions of stating that the Constitution should be scrapped or having dinner with white supremacists just further feeds and fuels this narrative that Trump may be more of a liability and more trouble than he’s worth,” Curry said. 

Some Republicans like U student Alexander Carhart are ready for a new party leader.

“I think a big thing that the Republican Party needs is unity, and right now, I don’t believe that we would get that with Trump,” he said. 

Carhart said, apart from Trump’s controversial rhetoric, he thinks most Americans could agree that Trump did a good job making America great. “I don’t think that there’s a divide in what the Republican [party] believes, but there is [a divide] about what they say and what they want,” he said. 

Recent polls have seen DeSantis polling evenly or ahead of Trump. “In Utah, there seems to be a groundswell of opposition to Trump as the nominee among both the public and elected officials and a lot of support for someone like DeSantis,” Curry said.

Curry said if there is one thing people have learned, it is not to underestimate certain candidates. “It’s really hard to forecast where this is headed until we see who the contenders are and who’s going to run and who isn’t,” he said. 

Curry said it’s important to remember that Trump’s win in 2016 was largely unexpected.

“I think early on when he first won the presidency in 2016, there was a sense that maybe Trump was an electoral boon,” Curry said. “And I think that grew primarily out of the fact that most people did not expect him to win.”


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