OPINION: This article may contain commentary which reflects the author's opinion.
Former President Donald Trump has yet to name a running mate — after all, the nominating process hasn’t even begun yet — but he appears to have dramatically narrowed down his field of prospects.
After she heartily endorsed him earlier this month, Trump has indicated his strong affinity for South Dakota Gov. Kristi Noem.
“I think she’s fantastic,” Trump said in an interview this week. “She’s been a great governor. She gave me a very full-throated endorsement, a beautiful endorsement, actually. It’s been a very good state for me, and certainly, she would be one of the people I would consider or for something else, maybe. We have a lot of great people in the Republican Party.”
Earlier, Trump said he likes “the concept” of selecting a woman as his running mate, but that he’s not wedded to the idea, per se, and is instead looking for “the right person.”
“You always do a little bit, but I really don’t think it’s time,” Trump said, per the Washington Examiner. “I want to win, and, you know, it’s very interesting about running mates, when you get down to a vice president, they said, ‘Nobody has ever made that kind of a difference.’ It’s still about the person that’s going to be president.”
The outlet noted further:
Noem endorsed Trump during a rally in South Dakota earlier this month, delivering a speech in the vein of an audition to be his running mate. When asked earlier this year about serving as vice president with him, she said she would “do all I can to help him be successful” if he became president again.
Other women Trump is reportedly considering for vice president include former Arizona gubernatorial candidate Kari Lake, Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-GA), Rep. Nancy Mace (R-SC), and Gov. Sarah Sanders (R-AR).
— BPR (@BIZPACReview) September 19, 2023
Trump is on a path to easily become the GOP’s 2024 presidential nominee again. What’s more, he’s gaining ground rapidly on his likely opponent, President Joe Biden.
Not only have Trump’s polling numbers rocketed since he was hit with four indictments in New York, Washington, D.C., Fulton County, Ga., and southern Florida, but he is also moving past Biden in critical swing states, according to a new survey.
“The states that had the narrowest margin of victory for either candidate last cycle were Arizona, Georgia, Michigan, Nevada, North Carolina, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin, with Biden winning all but North Carolina. Across those key swing states, Trump is ahead of Biden 41% to 35%, and 24% of voters remain undecided, according to a Reuters/Ipsos poll,” The Daily Caller reported.
“Among independent voters, the former president also held a slight advantage over Biden, according to the poll. Trump received 32% support among independents compared to Biden’s 30%, and 38% were undecided. Uncertain voters favored Biden over Trump at 49% to 38%,” The DC noted, citing the survey.
In a hypothetical head-to-head contest for the 2024 election, Biden and Trump are deadlocked at 39%, as per the survey. Many voters cited concerns about the president’s age, along with worries about the economy and crime, as significant factors influencing their choice.
The survey “found that 48% of respondents in swing states would probably or definitely vote for Trump, compared to just 41% for Biden. Though Biden is narrowly favored overall by likely voters, with 43% favoring him compared to 42% for Trump, the Republican front-runner could win 270 Electoral College votes by seizing the swing states,” the Washington Examiner reported.
Trump has been outpolling Biden in recent months. In May, for instance, an ABC/Washington Post survey showed him with a whopping 7-point lead over Biden, Mediaite reported.