Veteran GOP pollster Frank Luntz says that former President TrumpDonald TrumpTrump takes shot at new GOP candidate in Ohio over Cleveland nickname GOP political operatives indicted over illegal campaign contribution from Russian national in 2016 On The Money — Dems dare GOP to vote for shutdown, default MORE "could never win" the 2024 general election, but that he "would bet on" Trump to be the GOP nominee.
"If Donald Trump runs for president as a Republican, he's the odds-on favorite to win the nomination," Luntz said during an appearance on The New York Times podcast “Sway” released Thursday. "He could never win a general election, but I can't imagine losing a Republican primary. ... I would bet on him to be the nominee and I would bet on him losing to whatever Democratic nominee there was."
Trump has repeatedly floated — but not committed to — running again after losing to President BidenJoe BidenHouse clears bill to provide veterans with cost-of-living adjustment On The Money — Dems dare GOP to vote for shutdown, default To reduce poverty, stop burdening the poor: What Joe Manchin gets wrong about the child tax credit MORE last year, though in interviews and public statements since leaving office he has pledged to help Republicans regain control of the House and Senate in the 2022 midterm elections.
"As you know, it's very early. But I think people are going to be very, very happy when I make a certain announcement," Trump told conservative pundit Candace Owens this week about a potential run for president in 2024.
"You know, for campaign finance reasons, you really can't do it too early because it becomes a whole different thing. ... Otherwise I think I'd give you an answer that you'd be very happy with. So we're looking at that very, very seriously," he said, before adding, "All I'd say is: Stay tuned."
The former president has also sharply criticized Senate GOP leadership and threatened to back primary challengers against Republicans who have been critical of him and his agenda, such as Sen. Lisa MurkowskiLisa Ann MurkowskiTrump, allies launch onslaught as midterms kick into gear Emboldened Trump takes aim at GOP foes The Hill's 12:30 Report - Presented by Facebook - DC prepares for Saturday of festivals & Jan. 6 demonstration MORE (Alaska) and House GOP Conference Chairwoman Liz CheneyElizabeth (Liz) Lynn CheneyTrump, allies launch onslaught as midterms kick into gear The Memo: Never Trumpers sink into gloom as Gonzalez bows out Kinzinger says Trump 'winning' because many Republicans 'have remained silent' MORE (Wyo.).
Luntz, who has been critical of Trump for peddling false claims of widespread voter fraud during the 2020 presidential election, says his research indicates the former president's messaging is working with the GOP base.
"More than two-thirds of Republicans believe that the election was stolen,” Luntz reported. “What Donald Trump is saying is actually telling people it's not worth it to vote. Donald Trump single-handedly may cause people not to vote. And he may be the greatest tool in the Democrats' arsenal to keep control of the House and Senate in 2022."
Other Republicans considered potential 2024 hopefuls include former Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki HaleyNikki HaleyPoll: Trump dominates 2024 Republican primary field Harris to hold fundraiser for McAuliffe ahead of Virginia governor's race Allies see rising prospect of Trump 2024 White House bid MORE, Sen. Ted CruzRafael (Ted) Edward CruzPoll: Trump dominates 2024 Republican primary field Republican politicians: Let OSHA do its job O'Rourke prepping run for governor in Texas: report MORE (Texas), Sen. Josh HawleyJoshua (Josh) David HawleySenators slow Biden with holds at Pentagon, State Overnight Defense & National Security — Milley becomes lightning rod Joint Chiefs Chairman Milley becomes lightning rod on right MORE (Missouri) and Florida Gov. Ron DeSantisRon DeSantisPoll: Trump dominates 2024 Republican primary field Republican politicians: Let OSHA do its job Ben & Jerry's unveils new flavor in support of Cori Bush's public safety reform bill MORE.