Former President Donald Trump told New York magazine he had made his decision about whether to run again for the nation’s highest office in 2024.
Trump did not give the verdict, but told the magazine the only remaining question concerned the timing of an announcement. Indications have been that he plans to run.
“Well, in my own mind, I’ve already made that decision, so nothing factors in anymore,” Trump said. “In my own mind, I’ve already made that decision.
“I would say my big decision will be whether I go before or after [the midterms] … do I go before or after? That will be my big decision.”
Two Trump advisers told The Washington Post that the former president was eyeing a September announcement, with one saying odds were “70-30 he announces before the midterms.”
The Post added that Trump had begun talking with advisers about who should run a campaign. Also, team members have been told to prepare an online campaign site should he announce soon.
Trump told New York’s Olivia Nuzzi that there are “certain assets” to making an announcement sooner than later.
“Let people know. I think a lot of people would not even run if I did that because, if you look at the polls, they don’t even register,” Trump told Nuzzi of other potential GOP candidates. “And I think that you would actually have a backlash against them if they ran. People want me to run.”
One source told Nuzzi that Trump “100 percent [was] going to announce on the Fourth of July,” until some supporters, including Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-S.C., and House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy, R-Calif., said they “were against it because he would be blamed for the midterms” if Republicans don’t fare as well as expected.
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Trump, who spoke with Nuzzi via phone from Alaska on Saturday and at his Bedminster, New Jersey, golf club on Monday, insisted that a July 4 announcement would have been amateurish.
“I don’t think I have to compete with that,” he said. “First of all, a lot of people aren’t around on the Fourth of July. It’s not a great time to do an announcement … I never said I was going to. That was just fake news. Somebody said that I was going to. I don’t think it was any of our people.”
Trump expressed confidence that, no matter when he announces, “if I decide to run, I’ll win.”
“Nothing compares to getting things done that you can’t do from any other position other than president,” he told Nuzzi. “I made America great again, and I may have to do it again.”
As often the case these days, Trump was asked about Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis and whether the two men were rivals.
“I don’t feel that,” Trump said. “I endorsed Ron [for governor], he was at 3 [percent], and as soon as I endorsed him, he went to first place, he was not gonna win.
“I think Ron knows that better than anybody. We have a good relationship.”
New York magazine added that Trump’s current small circle of advisers included Susie Wiles, a Florida operative who had worked to elect DeSantis to the governorship; Bill Stepien, manager of the 2020 campaign in its late stages; Justin Clark, an attorney who served as Stepien’s deputy; and David Bossie, Citizens United president and 2016 deputy campaign manager.