Senate Republican says Trump’s 2024 campaign has had ‘terrible rollout’
Retiring Sen. Pat Toomey (R-Pa.) on Sunday said former President Trump’s 2024 campaign is having an “unbelievably terrible rollout” while assessing Trump’s influence on the GOP as “absolutely” waning in part due to the outcome of the midterm elections.
When asked by CNN’s Jake Tapper if he thought Trump’s hold on the party was “finally slipping,” Toomey answered, “Absolutely, I do.”
“I think his influence was waning, not as quickly as I had hoped it would, but I think it was waning. But the election outcome from last month I think dramatically accelerates the waning. And, frankly, his unbelievably terrible rollout of his reelection — well, his election campaign is also not helping him,” Toomey said.
The Pennsylvania senator said Trump’s shrinking influence is evidenced by the number of GOP candidates who have openly talked about getting in the 2024 primary ring even after Trump announced another run for the White House.
“In my travel since the election around Pennsylvania, I’ve heard from many, many formerly very pro-Trump voters that they think it’s time for our party to move on. So, yes, I think that process is underway. It’s not a flip of a switch. It doesn’t happen overnight. He still has a significant following, that’s for sure. But I do think his influence is waning,” Toomey said.
Toomey’s step down from his Senate seat gave way to the contentious Pennsylvania race between Sen.-elect John Fetterman (D) and Trump-backed Republican candidate Mehmet Oz during this year’s midterms.
Oz’s loss was seen as one of a number of midterm blows to Trump amid overall results for Republicans in which they failed to gain control of the Senate and were left with a slimmer-than-expected House majority.
When Trump launched his 2024 bid just a week after the election, some prominent GOP figures and former supporters appeared to distance themselves from the former president or critique his campaign outright.
Trump is falling behind Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis (R) in some recent polls about the next presidential primary as other results indicate most in the party don’t want Trump in the White House again.
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