To hear a number of major media pundits (on the left and right) tell it, Donald Trump has already magically locked up the 2024 Republican nomination for President, and he has a good chance of winning the White House as well. Of course this just happens to be the perfect doomsday narrative for helping the media boost its sagging ratings in 2021, so of course it’s being pushed loudly, regardless of whether it’s realistic or not. But what does the factual truth say?
New polling from Pew Research, which falls roughly in line with previous polling from other outlets, says that while 67% of Republicans want Donald Trump to remain involved in the Republican Party, just 44% of them want him to run in 2024. Given that no other Republican has emerged as a clear 2024 alternative, this means that a majority of Republicans would rather anyone be the nominee but Trump.
Given Trump’s massive name recognition at this early stage and a total lack of declared 2024 Republican candidates, this number is devastating for him. It makes clear that while most remaining Republican voters are still aligned with Trump’s garbage views and criminal behavior, most of them have now decided that Trump is washed up and isn’t viable in 2024.
What’s interesting is that Trump keeps making moves in 2021 aimed at vaguely pretending that he’s going to end up being a candidate in 2024, such as launching a Super PAC, so he can keep shoveling money in his pockets. But given that even most of his own fans are saying they don’t want him to run 2024, donations to his faux-campaign could end up being a lot less than what he’s hoping for.
In any case, this polling makes clear that Donald Trump is done in politics. Republican voters don’t want to have to relive another four years of his ineptitude and failures. Instead they want a new bullshitter to come along who talks like Trump and behaves like Trump, but isn’t Trump, and therefore doesn’t have Trump’s baggage. This isn’t anything new for Republicans; they always end up wanting someone shiny and new to sell them the same old convenient lies that they’re addicted to. Unfortunately for Trump, even his own supporters now see him as too compromised to be able to effectively sell them those lies.
Bill Palmer is the publisher of the political news outlet Palmer Report