- Kellyanne Conway predicted Donald Trump will run for the White House again in 2024.
- She was one of his longest-serving White House officials.
- If Trump doesn’t run, she said the alternatives to watch are those supported by the grassroots.
Former White House counselor Kellyanne Conway would put money down on former President Donald Trump having another go at the White House in 2024.
“If I were a betting woman right now I’d say the odds are that he runs,” Conway told Insider in a phone interview Wednesday to talk about her new book, “Here’s the Deal.”
Conway led Trump’s 2016 presidential campaign to victory and served in the White House for nearly all of Trump’s time in office. She was one of his closest, most trusted advisors who still remains in his inner circle.
Conway told Insider that she could share “with great confidence” that Trump would like to run — “for two reasons.”
“No. 1 he knows that he positively transformed this country and No. 2, as is the case with a majority of Americans — according to everybody’s polls — he is distraught by what is happening to the country at the hand of Biden-Harris.”
Trump regularly and openly hints at waging another presidential campaign. Still, it’s an open question as to whether he’ll run at all given his political baggage that includes being twice impeached, accusations of inciting the US Capitol attack, and facing grave legal jeopardy in multiple jurisdictions.
Yet, many Republicans have publicly conceded that Trump would defeat any challengers if he were to enter the 2024 campaign.
“If President Trump decides to run again in 2024, he is the leader of the America First movement,” Conway said. “He will be the frontrunner and many Americans who are angry, appalled, and deeply and negatively affected by the Biden-Harris administration and its policies will be very pleased to have that happen.”
But if Trump doesn’t run, then dozens of Republican candidates are expected to enter the race. The swath of candidates could become even more crowded if President Joe Biden bows out. Biden, 79, has said he’s going to run again, but his age and falling approval rating are sowing doubt among Washington insiders.
Conway said to watch the 2022 primaries for how the 2024 GOP primaries would play out.
Republican candidates in the 2022 midterms have been trying to replicate Trump’s message and policies even if they don’t have Trump’s endorsement, she said, citing the Pennsylvania US Senate primary currently facing a recount as an example. All candidates vying for the seat ran on a pro-Trump message.
“If President Trump decides not to run in 2024, there will be a healthy and hardy fight within the Republican Party among dozens of men and women to stake their claims to the America First mantle, and their ability to reconstruct the Trump policy agenda in a way that is satisfying to Americans and gratifying to Republican primary voters,” Conway said.
She didn’t name any specific candidates she thought might win, saying the person would likely be “all the obvious folks you would write about anyway.” Some of the biggest names in Republican circles who are getting attention from donors and the media include Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis, Sen. Tim Scott of South Carolina, and former Vice President Mike Pence.
But Conway said those making predictions should pay attention to what the most passionate voters are saying. In her book, she wrote that Trump “built a movement” and that the “lessons from MAGA are important.”
“I will say this: Donors are often wrong,” she told Insider. “They are successful people in life and business and they are absolutely lovely great patriots, but they often choose the wrong persons early on. We have seen this time and again. I would really look and see who the grassroots want in a non-Trump presidential primary.”
“We’ll have to hear from President Trump as well,” she added. “He’ll have something to say about that.”