Dozens of Republican Party members, donors, strategists and grassroots leaders are discussing ways to stop former President Donald Trump from securing the GOP nomination in 2024, including telling potential candidates to be prepared to drop out of the race before voting begins to make sure the party puts its best candidate forward against likely Democrat contender Joe Biden, Politico reported.
The report came a day after a Yahoo News/YouGov poll showed Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis with a slight lead over Trump (45% to 41%) if the party's 2024 presidential primary were held today, but that result would flip if even one additional Republican candidate challenges Trump and DeSantis for the nomination, splitting the party's "anti-Trump" vote.
"Does Mike Pence really want his legacy to be that he got 4% of the vote and helped elect Donald Trump?" one adviser to a major Republican giver told Politico.
"Same goes for [Mike] Pompeo, same goes for [Nikki] Haley. They want to get traction, of course, but there is a higher motivation to pull out more quickly based on what it would mean for the country and the party."
Haley is set to announce her presidential bid Wednesday. DeSantis, Pompeo, and Pence have not announced that they are running.
A former Trump adviser who thinks Trump can't win told Politico: "The great hope for DeSantis is that he breaks through quickly, and that convinces everyone else there is no path."
Many have soured on Trump.
Eric Levine, a top GOP fundraiser, called him a "metastasizing cancer who, if he is not stopped, is going to destroy the party.
"Donald Trump is a loser. He is the first president since Hoover to lose the House, the Senate and the presidency in a single term. Because of him, Chuck Schumer is Leader Schumer, and the progressive agenda is threatening to take over the country. And he is probably the only Republican in the country, if not the only person in the country, who can't beat Joe Biden."
Andy Sabin, a metal mogul who donated over $100,000 to Trump over the years, told Politico he doesn't see "a big bunch of donors coming behind Trump at this point."
"I wouldn't give Trump a f**king nickel, and that hasn't changed," Sabin said. "As we get closer Trump is going to see the handwriting on the wall. Now, he may not care if he f***s everybody up. Trump worries only about Trump, so he may not care if we lose as long as he has his day in the park, but I don't know any donor that wants to give a red nickel to Trump."
Ken Griffin, the CEO of Citadel who poured $1 million into a Trump PAC in 2018, announced his support for DeSantis after the November midterm elections.
"I'd like to think that the Republican Party is ready to move on from somebody who has been for this party a three-time loser," Griffin said.
Solange Reyner is a writer and editor for Newsmax. She has more than 15 years in the journalism industry reporting and covering news, sports and politics.
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