Donald Trump has made no secret of his intention to run for reelection in 2020, holding rallies, raising money, and joking that he plans to also run in 2024 and 2028. In a normal world with a normal president, that would be enough for high-profile members of Trump’s party to back his reelection. But this world isn’t normal and CNN reports that a “wide array of House and Senate Republicans are not yet ready to endorse President Donald Trump’s bid for a second term.”
Some of the lawmakers who went on the record with reporter Manu Raju tried to avoid the question of endorsing Trump in two years.
“I don’t know what the world is going to look like,” Senate Majority Whip John Cornyn said. “But let’s say it’s not something I’ve given any thought to.”
“Look, I’m focused on opioids,” Senator Lamar Alexander said.
Others suggested that Trump, who filed 2020 campaign paperwork on the day he was inaugurated, might not be even be running.
“We need to make sure that he’s actually moving forward and wants to go after this,” Representative Bill Huizenga said.
CNN’s New Day continued to pull the thread in interviews with Republican senators Thursday. “It’s way too early to be talking 2020,” Senator Ron Johnson said when asked about his support for Trump’s reelection. “It could be a completely different world by 2020. We have a 2018 election first.”
Tennessee senator Bob Corker, one of Trump’s most outspoken critics in the Senate, sounded doubtful that Republicans will even have to choose whether to support Trump in 2020. Because, Corker said, he’s not sure Trump will even run.
“I have no idea whether the president will run for reelection nor what the field will be on the Republican side, so I think it’s way too early to weigh in on who won my support,” Corker said on CNN.
“But are you saying you’re not sure the president is going to run?” New Day anchor Alisyn Camerota asked.
“I’m definitely not sure if he’s going to run,” Corker said.