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GOP Strategist Says Trump Unconcerned About Primaries, Already In Full ‘Campaign Mode’

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OPINION: This article may contain commentary which reflects the author's opinion.


A leading Republican strategist has said that former President Donald Trump’s avoidance of the GOP primary debates proves without a doubt that he is so certain of winning the party’s 2024 nomination he’s already in “campaign mode.”

“Trump’s comments about the 2024 presidential race, his abortion stance, and his ever-increasing poll numbers during two campaign stops in Iowa this week may indicate that post-Labor Day, Trump is gearing his campaign toward a general election that is focused on defeating President Joe Biden next year as opposed to relitigating the 2020 election or directly engaging his GOP competitors,” The Washington Examiner reported.

Jeffrey Lazarus, a political scientist at Georgia State University, believes the primary race is essentially over already, barring any unforeseen issues.

“I might be calling this prematurely, but I don’t see how anybody in the Republican field beats Trump,” he told the Examiner.

“If you’re a strategic Republican politician, the only reason you take a hard-line stance on abortion is to win a primary election because that stance doesn’t win general elections,” Lazarus explained further.

“So the abortion comment to me is a sign that Trump thinks he has the primary sewn up. And I happen to agree with him on that one very small thing,” he said.

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Trump has consistently encouraged his supporters at “Caucus Commitment” events to mobilize voters for the crucial January 15 Iowa caucuses. It’s part of his strategic plan to extensively campaign in Iowa, which includes scheduling five additional campaign events in the state over the next several weeks, the outlet noted further.

Furthermore, he reaffirmed his previous stance that six-week abortion bans implemented by Republicans, including his primary rival Governor Ron DeSantis (R-FL), were a “terrible thing,” claiming that such stances will cost Republicans next year.

His focus on establishing a strong presence in the first-in-the-nation caucuses, coupled with his unwavering stance against external pressures advocating for a federal abortion ban, both indicate that Trump is transitioning beyond the GOP primary race. It suggests he’s now focused on winning over centrist and independent voters who hold the key to deciding the election, the Examiner added.

“He’s definitely in general election mode. He’s skipping debates. He’s barely talking about his opponents. He’s clearly focused on Joe Biden and the November 2024 election,” national Republican strategist Brian Seitchik told the outlet.

To that end, Trump also introduced a major new anti-crime plan this week.

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“Trump says if re-elected to the White House he will enact a sweeping new law-and-order agenda that will create federal authority for stop-and-frisk policies and new indemnification from lawsuits to help local police fighting intensifying crime in blue urban areas,” Just the News reported.

In a rangy interview with the outlet, Trump said that Americans around the country are tired of seeing stores looted, neighbors mugged and beaten, and their cars repeatedly stolen amid ‘criminal reform’ policies implemented by far-left district attorneys who refuse to prosecute lawbreaking.

“You know, we’re a laughingstock all over the world,” he told a town hall-style event sponsored by the Association of Mature American Citizens (AMAC) and televised nationally on the Real America’s Voice network.

“No other country has this, where our police are great, but they’re not allowed to do anything because they’re standing there watching these kids walk out with very expensive items, destroying businesses. And then the business closes, and they have empty stores all over the place,” Trump added.

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The 45th president outlined a number of new crime-fighting measures that include creating federal jurisdiction for implementing stop-and-frisk policies that were put in place in New York City by then-Mayor Rudy Giuliani, which led to significantly lower violent crime rates in the city.

“You have to also do a stop-and-frisk program,” he said. “You know, we had stop and frisk in New York, Rudy Giuliani did it incredibly. … They did strong but fair stop-and-frisk. And it worked.

“You’re gonna have to do it. And if you don’t do it, your cities, you can’t walk down the street,“ he added. “These people, they go for a loaf of bread, they end up being shot and killed.”

“If you spent one really tough, vicious day and you tell them don’t ever do it again because if you do it again, people are going to get seriously hurt if you walk out of a store carrying two television sets under your arms. It would stop immediately. Stop immediately. All over the country,” he said.

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