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Donald Trump's Re-election Strategy: His Comeback Plan for 2024


Photo "Donald Trump" by Dan Scavino
Photo "Donald Trump" by Dan Scavino

Donald Trump's 2020 Re-election Strategy: His Comeback Plan for 2024

Defeated presidents usually go away — at least for a long while. Not Donald J. Trump.

President Trump returns to the electoral battlefield he plans to follow up with several more rallies in the next few months to keep his unique political base engaged in the 2022 midterms and give him the option of seeking the presidency again in 2024.

"If the president feels like he's in a good position, I think there's a good chance that he does it," Trump adviser Jason Miller said in a telephone interview. "For the more immediate impact, there's the issue of turning out Trump voters for the midterm elections."

And, Jason Miller added, "President Donald Trump is the leader of the Republican Party." The set of advisers around Trump now is a familiar mix of his top 2020 campaign aides and others who have moved in and out of his orbit over time.

Why Trump wants to run for president again?

Why Trump will go for it?

What Trump could learn from the past presidents who lost?

The outsiders waiting to see if Trump wins reelection!

It's a stark departure from 2016 when many of Trump's top political advisers were competing with each other to see who could usher him into the Oval Office. The president was focused primarily on helping Republicans defend their Senate majority, while his most trusted aides had their sights set on a run for the White House.

On the eve of the Republican National Convention in July 2016, Trump stood before the cameras at the ballroom of his National Doral Miami hotel, where he signed a new television contract with NBCUniversal.

What Trump's strategy for 2020 is

Those close to the president remain skeptical that he's really going to run, although they're not ready to rule it out entirely either. Several insisted on anonymity in order to speak freely about private discussions with the White House.

Republicans fear Democrat blue wave in key House races, analysts say

"The president is going to be very active as we head into 2020," said Hope Hicks, Trump's longtime spokeswoman. Hicks served as a media gatekeeper for Trump in his early days in business and is still among the president's most trusted aides.

White House officials contend the president's busy schedule is partly driven by personal interests — proving to his supporters that he remains one of the most powerful political figures in the nation.

What his strategy for 2024 could be

"2020 primary and reelection will be a totally different beast," said Jeff Sadosky, a longtime friend and Republican National Committee strategist. "The incumbency factor is going to go up a few notches."

Trump's rally schedule helps fill out the major electoral calendar of the year in what would normally be a midterm election year. Next month, Trump is headed to Missouri to headline the state Republican Party's annual fundraising dinner. June 2, he'll be back in Wisconsin to deliver another speech to the national GOP's annual fundraising dinner. The following day, he'll speak to the California Republican Party's state dinner. In August, Trump's calendar is filling up quickly, with another Illinois rally, a Michigan rally and an Indiana campaign event.

His advisers and their thoughts on it

Still, winning the 2020 nomination is no sure thing. Some of Trump's current aides, such as campaign manager Brad Parscale, are likely to back a primary challenger against him.

But Miller said Trump would likely view another presidential bid as a continuation of his second term. After a devastating midterm, he could become a lame-duck — one who would use his new office as a foil to energize his political base. "It is a very, very clear path to re-election," Miller said.

The last president to make repeated forays into the 2020 presidential race was Bill Clinton. He started four different campaigns over 15 years before being elected in 1992.

The Republican party's thoughts on the future

Both Miller and a second former Trump campaign aide, Sam Nunberg, said they expect the president to maintain a high profile for the rest of 2018. That includes plans to hit the trail for Republican candidates in key midterm races.

As a candidate, Trump launched his campaign from his Trump Tower offices in New York City. Many Republican congressional candidates now are in Washington holding their own events in the same city where Trump will hold rallies on behalf of GOP candidates.

"In order to win, you can't just give 'em what they want; you have to give 'em what they need," Miller said, noting the focus on state-level candidates. "That's why there are more visits, that's why there are more rallies, to put more resources in some of these races to get them over the finish line.


"I don't see him backing out of anything," said former New York City mayor Rudolph Giuliani, who has frequently accompanied Trump on his political journeys and is part of the president's informal 2020 campaign team. "And 2020 is the right term. The campaign starts in 2019. He doesn't want to go anywhere. He's going to be active all year long.

"In a practical sense, in some ways, he's doing what we would have advised President Obama not to do," Giuliani continued, adding that he knows of no Democratic successor that Trump would consider leaving his post for.



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