Former President Donald Trump is likely to pick a vice presidential candidate that is “ideologically aligned” with him, has “charisma” and “loyal,” Trump insiders told the Daily Caller.
No candidates have publicly announced their intent to be Trump’s VP, but the former president has indicated that “a lot of people” are “auditioning” behind the scenes. Trump insiders told the Caller that although there haven’t been any formal discussions to narrow down the pool, there are a set of characteristics that will likely be considered.
“We do know one thing about Trump, is that he puts a lot of weight on how well you present yourself. That really matters to him, so I suspect that will matter for his VP choice,” a GOP consultant close to the Trump campaign told the Caller, noting that the person would be “TV ready.”
“Loyalty. That’s the necessary characteristic of anyone who wants to be VP. President Trump and the movement was dragged down by disloyalty in the White House,” a source close to Trump said.
The Caller granted anonymity to sources familiar with Trump’s thinking to allow them to speak openly on a sensitive matter.
The former president has not publicly indicated who he’s considering to put on his ticket, and has even suggested he wouldn’t rule out Republican Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis, his primary rival. Those suspected to be angling for the VP position include Republican Reps. Marjorie Taylor Greene of Georgia and Elise Stefanik of New York, presidential candidate Nikki Haley, Republican Govs. Sarah Huckabee Sanders of Arkansas and Kristi Noem of South Dakota and Kari Lake.
Trump will likely choose a female to be his running mate, sources close to the campaign said.
“I think he would very much be open to a female… it depends. I don’t believe in diversity for the sake of diversity when it comes to elections and political figures, but I think there are people out there that are female that would be good fits for him,” the GOP consultant close to the Trump campaign said.
Especially with abortion currently being an important issue for voters, a female candidate would “be an advantage to have on the ticket,” an official supporting Trump’s election effort told the Caller, clarifying that we’re a long way away from the election and top issues could change.
“It’s always seemed to me that it will be a woman. Whenever I’ve talked to people who worked in Trump world, it’s always assumed to be someone like Elise Stefanik or some other woman candidate,” the official said. (RELATED: Trump Campaign Shifts Strategy To Capitalize On Indictment Rocket Fuel)
Stefanik endorsed Trump before the former president announced his 2024 presidential run, becoming the first member of GOP leadership to do so. She also has a track record of being loyal to the president, taking his side in the impeachment trials and against Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg.
Stefanik was being considered to be Trump’s running mate as early as May of 2022, CNN reported, citing sources familiar, and the former president has floated her as a possibility to be commander-in-chief in 2028. In May, Stefanik left the window open to being VP, saying she doesn’t “know what’s going to happen in the future,” before saying in March she’s focused on securing Republican majorities in both chambers of Congress and a Republican president.
Lake, who lost the Arizona gubernatorial election, will likely not be Trump’s pick despite the rumors, the official supporting Trump’s campaign said.
“What I will say that’s bullshit that’s always floating around is Kari Lake. Kari Lake will not be his VP pick. She’s running for Senate instead. I don’t think MTG will be his pick either,” the official added.
Alex Nicoll, a spokesperson for Lake, told the Caller, “Kari Lake is committed to fighting for the people of Arizona, championing America First policies, and doing everything in her power to ensure that President Trump is elected in 2024.”
“One thing is for sure, you haven’t seen the last of Kari Lake,” Nicoll added.
Taylor Greene has denied rumors that she’s aiming to be VP.
“It’s not something I’ve been thinking about,” she said in her latest comments on the issue. “I’ve just been wanting committees for two years.”
One name that hasn’t been talked about enough is Republican Missouri Sen. Josh Hawley, the consultant close to the campaign continued.
“I think Hawley is very, very interested in policy. I think he’s not interested in overshadowing Trump. He looks the part, he’s presentable, he’s pretty good on TV, and unlike Mike Pence, he’s actually aligned ideologically to Donald Trump,” the consultant added.
The official supporting Trump’s election effort agreed that Hawley could be “a great pick,” but “if he really wanted to be his VP, I think he would have endorsed Trump by now.”
Hawley did not respond to inquiries from the Caller.