OPINION: This article may contain commentary which reflects the author's opinion.
Former President Donald Trump dropped an interesting clue this week about his potential running mate if he wins the 2024 Republican nomination.
During an interview on “Just the News, No Noise,” Trump said he was looking for a “respected,” “common sense” person to be his running mate. While Trump did not name anyone specifically in the interview, he did provide some insight into the type of person he would want by his side.
“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,” Trump said.
A recent Politico report stated an unnamed Trump adviser said the 45th president is likely to choose a running mate “from three general lanes of candidates: women, conservatives of color, or a trusted adviser.”
“Once you get past those two issues — loyalty and Trump going more with his gut — Trump has a lot of leeway in who he would pick,” said Tony Fabrizio, Trump’s lead pollster in 2016 and 2020.
“He’s not necessarily looking to balance the ticket geographically, but what he can do is pick to balance gender, race, ethnicity — a lot of different lanes there. It could be everything from a Tim Scott in South Carolina to an Asian American in California, or somebody Hispanic in Texas. There are so many choices and paths. And there’s lots of time to go,” he added.
According to a new report from the Washington Examiner, these four Republican women could be high on Trump’s shortlist: South Dakota Gov. Kristi Noem, New York Rep. Elise Stefanik, Arkansas Gov. Sarah Huckabee Sanders, and former Arizona journalist Kari Lake.
The Washington Examiner reported:
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.”
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.
Beyond that, Trump made headlines earlier this week when he unveiled his trade policy plans to enact a “sweeping pro-American overhaul of our tax and trade policy.” The bold new plan is aimed at strengthening American production and reducing dependence on China, something most Americans support.
In a video released on social media, Trump tore into President Biden by arguing that despite his claims to be pro-American manufacturing, he is “pushing the same pro-China globalist agenda that ripped the industrial heart out of our country.”
Trump called “to move from the Biden system that punishes domestic producers and rewards outsourcers to a system that rewards domestic production and taxes foreign companies and those who export American jobs.”
“To achieve this goal, we will phase in a system of universal base-line tariffs on most foreign products. On top of this, higher tariffs will increase incrementally depending on how much individual foreign countries devalue their currency,” Trump said.
“As tariffs on foreign producers go up, taxes on American producers will go down and go down very substantially, and that means a lot of jobs coming in. Not only will this system end our gaping trade deficits – and they are massive right now – and bring back millions of American jobs, it will also bring trillions and trillions of dollars pouring into the United States Treasury from foreign countries and allow us to invest that money in American workers, American families, and American communities. This plan will be the linchpin of a new strategic manufacturing initiative that builds on my historical success in ending NAFTA [North Atlantic Free Trade Agreement],” Trump declared.
Trump rounded out the clip by arguing that Biden “will never get the job done” and that “he is weak on China because the corrupt Biden family has received millions and millions of dollars from entities tied to the Chinese Communist Party.”