Psaki says Trump’s ‘evil charisma’ shouldn’t be underestimated
Former White House press secretary Jen Psaki on Sunday said former President Trump has an “evil charisma” that shouldn’t be underestimated as he once again vies again for the GOP’s presidential nomination.
“Democrats and sane Republicans underestimate Trump at their own peril because in order for Trump not to win the nomination, there has to be a better alternative. That’s how primaries work, right?” Psaki said at the roundtable for NBC’s “Meet the Press.”
“So the question is, who’s the alternative? Trump has some evil charisma that helps him win the nomination. The nomination process is long. What is going to happen here? And my view is people should not underestimate him,” she added.
Discussing Trump’s possible competitors for the GOP nomination, Psaki said Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis (R) was “either the savior, or he’s currently at his peak” and said former Vice President Mike Pence “didn’t exactly light the world on fire politically before he was selected by Donald Trump to be his running mate.”
Trump announced his 2024 bid just a week after November’s midterms saw a number of his favored candidates lose out to Democrats in key races, contributing to disappointing results for Republicans overall.
The former president is now working to rally support for his third presidential run as some in the party move to distance themselves from him and his campaign.
Pence, Trump’s former right-hand man, responded last month to a question about whether Trump should ever be president again by saying, “I think we’ll have better choices in the future.”
DeSantis has largely shrugged off recent attacks by Trump, though he has repeatedly pointed to his dominating reelection win in contrast to Republican disappointment elsewhere.
“At the end of the day, I would just tell people to go check out the scoreboard from last Tuesday night,” he said at a news conference the week after the election.