Key Senate Republican Thune says he hopes for ‘other options’ to Trump in 2024
Senate Minority Whip John Thune (R-S.D.) on Wednesday said he hopes that the GOP has “other options” in 2024 after former President Trump called to terminate parts of the U.S. Constitution.
“I hope we have other options, and I think we will have other options,” Thune told Washington Post Live.
Thune, the No. 2 Republican in the Senate, has been a vocal critic of Trump’s posts last week calling to terminate the Constitution and other related election laws so he could be reinstated as president.
Thune told The Hill this week the former president’s comments were “beyond the pale” and had created a “huge opening” for other Republican presidential candidates.
Potential Republican primary challengers to Trump, who declared his White House bid last month, include former Vice President Mike Pence, Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis, former Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and outgoing Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan.
Trump posted the Constitution comments on his Truth Social platform after Twitter owner Elon Musk released internal documents about the social media company suppressing a damaging story on the platform about Hunter Biden.
Twitter’s block of the New York Post story about Biden’s laptop and allegedly corrupt business affairs came less than a month before Election Day in 2020, but the decision to suppress the story was reversed after two days.
The former president tried to walk back his claims after receiving widespread, bipartisan backlash for his Constitution comments, writing in follow-up Truth Social posts that he only wanted the 2020 election “redone” or for him to be declared the winner.
Thune this week told The Hill that he was mystified by Trump making the outlandish call to terminate the Constitution based on Twitter employees’ discussions.
The senator said the former president’s comments would be the “grist” of the GOP presidential primary contest and that Trump created a “golden opportunity” for 2024 rivals.
Thune told Washington Post Live that a “new generation of leadership” focused on the future of the country would emerge in 2024, one “that can articulate a vision for the future of this country that is winsome, that is aspirational, and that appeals to people’s hopes.
“There are two great motivations in politics: hope and fear. And I want to be the party that appeals to people’s hopes and not preys on their fears.”