The Republican primary is underway with three main contenders: ex-President Donald Trump, Florida Governor Ron DeSantis, and former UN Ambassador Nikki Haley. Despite ongoing campaigns by DeSantis and Haley, the likelihood of their securing the nomination appears to be diminishing. Although Trump hasn’t officially clinched the primary, speculation is rife regarding his potential choice for a running mate in anticipation of his inevitable victory.
In the 2016 election, Trump heeded the advice of party insiders and selected former Indiana Governor Mike Pence (R) as his running mate. While Pence may not have been a thrilling choice, he possessed the ability to appeal to evangelical Christians, a crucial demographic for the billionaire’s victory. Pence’s background as a former congressman and party leader made him a seasoned political insider well-versed in the intricacies of Congress.
Initially, their relationship appeared amicable, but over time, it deteriorated. Pence won’t be part of the upcoming ticket, and speculation suggests that Trump is considering another influential Republican insider for the position.
As per an NBC report, in December, ex-President Trump organized a dinner for Mar-a-Lago members and sought their input on his choice for a running mate. During the discussion, someone mentioned Rep. Elise Stefanik (R-NY), the third-ranking Republican in the House.
Attendees at the dinner praised Stefanik for her assertive stance against university presidents in a recent congressional hearing. Trump’s response was, “She’s a killer,” acknowledging her effectiveness.
Subsequently, allies of Trump have allegedly initiated the process of examining Stefanik as a potential running mate. The 39-year-old congresswoman enjoys widespread popularity within the Republican Party and has demonstrated unwavering loyalty to the former president. Steve Bannon, a close associate of the ex-president, affirmed that the congresswoman is a leading contender for the position.
Stefanik is actively participating in campaigning alongside Trump in New Hampshire. However, she has chosen to remain silent on her potential candidacy, emphasizing her current focus on congressional responsibilities in her conversation with NBC. It’s worth noting that the GOP leader is not the sole individual under consideration for the former president’s vice-presidential selection.
Sarah Huckabee Sanders, the former Press Secretary currently serving as the Governor of Arkansas, is among the potential candidates. Known for her formidable tenure as Trump’s press secretary, she adeptly handled reporters without showing any sign of being unsettled. Other contenders include South Dakota Governor Kristi Noem, Senator Marsha Blackburn (R-TN), and even former South Carolina Governor Nikki Haley.
While the ultimate choice remains uncertain, a discernible pattern emerges – all the rumored top candidates are formidable, capable, conservative women.