Arizona’s 2022 Republican gubernatorial candidate Kari Lake responded to rumors that Donald Trump was strongly considering her as running mate in next year’s 2024 presidential election. Trump has gone on record saying he is “seriously” considering her for the position.
Axios jumped on the story, saying Lake was a “model” pick for vice president, especially, as it noted, because Trump’s “massive weakness is with…white suburban women.”
“Former President Trump is strongly considering picking a female running mate — and sees Kari Lake as a model for his vice presidential pick, according to people who discussed the topic with him. Trump is already gaming out the general election in November 2024 — and knows he has a massive weakness with the white suburban women he would need to beat President Biden,” Axios continued.
“Lake, a former TV anchor who lost her race for Arizona governor in November, meets Trump’s most important qualification for a No. 2: She has shown she’s willing to defend him vociferously, no matter the issue or controversy. But Trump friends say Lake carries a big downside: He wants no risk that his running mate could outshine him. Lake would be assumed to be angling for president from the day she entered the White House. She made a political trip to Iowa last month,” the report added.
In response, Trump spokesperson Steven Cheung offered a statement to Axios maintaining some degree of separation from a commitment right now and made the astute observation that Trump will do, as he always does, things like choosing a “running mate on his own time.”
“Anyone who thinks they know what President Trump is going to do is seriously misinformed and trying to curry favor with ‘potential’ V.P. candidates. President Trump will choose his running mate on his own time, and those who are playing the media game are doing so at their own peril,” Cheung’s statement to Axios said.
Kari Lake’s response was also couched in the typical non-answer. Lake said she remained committed to pursuing the governorship in Arizona for now, while adding that she was very much committed to getting Trump back in the White House.
“I am 100% dedicated to serving as Arizona Governor. I will also work to make sure President Trump gets back in the White House ASAP. Anything outside of those two goals is nothing but a distraction,” Lake told the Daily Mail.
Trump recently appeared on Real America’s Voice and said he was looking for a “respected,” “common sense” person to join his ticket as vice president.
“You’ve got to be smart, you’ve got to be respected, you’ve got to have a conservative voice and common sense. We’re not talking about conservative, we’re talking about common sense,” the former president said.
The Washington Examiner identified four Republican women who could be on a potential Trump shortlist: South Dakota Governor Kristi Noem, New York Representative Elise Stefanik, Arkansas Governor Sarah Huckabee Sanders, and former Arizona gubernatorial candidate Kari Lake. Lake’s name has also been floated for a Senate run in 2024 as well. The Washington Examiner said:
Stefanik, the current chairwoman of the House GOP conference, was elected as a centrist Republican in 2015 but, after serving on the president’s defense team during his first impeachment, has shifted increasingly to the right. She frequently touts her strong ties to Trump and even endorsed his 2024 run days before he announced his candidacy.
Lake is perhaps the strangest potential pick and one many current and former Trump advisers hope he avoids. The former Phoenix-area news anchor lost her Trump-endorsed 2022 gubernatorial bid against Democrat Katie Hobbs, but she only further endeared herself to the former president by repeatedly claiming that widespread fraud occurred in the 2020 election
Sanders, the youngest governor in the United States and the longest-tenured press secretary in the Trump White House, flew up political draft boards after she delivered what Trump supporters agree was an “exceptionally strong” response to Biden’s State of the Union on Feb. 7.
Noem was elected as South Dakota’s first female governor in 2018 after spending more than a decade in the House of Representatives and has made a name for herself as a leading Republican lawmaker in the so-called “culture wars.”
As much as conservatives might loathe the idea of playing identity politics, which is a disgusting way to operate in the world, there is nonetheless a lot upside to Trump selecting a younger female to join his campaign.For starters, the optics would be fantastic. Trump hates women so much he put one on his ticket? Now, the left would find ways to ignore this reality and still hammer him, but to many women voters – particularly the often clueless suburban female vote – such things matter.
The names being circulated also skew younger, which could help millenial and other voters connect better to the ticket. Again, not saying that’s how it should work, but given the advanced age of nearly every entrenched Establishment player in D.C., a little youth and vigor to shake things up isn’t bad either.
There’s also the fact that a young woman is going to reach and connect with different voters in a way Trump cannot. For everything he is – truthtelling, honest, blunt – Trump does lack the polished touch some voters look for when they cast a ballot. No one can deny that the short list of potential veeps is anything if not polished as a speaker.
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