Tucker Carlson for president in 2024? It could happen, says one prominent anti-Trumper.
“I think that Tucker Carlson is the frontrunner for the Republican nomination in 2024,” said Steve Schmidt, an outspoken opponent of President Donald Trump, in an appearance on MSNBC this week.
This is not a development that Schmidt would support, however. A former GOP operative who worked with Republican President George W. Bush and the late Sen. John McCain (R-AZ), Schmidt publicly quit the Republican Party in 2018 and announced that he will support Democratic candidates instead. In late 2019, Schmidt and other anti-Trump former Republicans co-founded The Lincoln Project super PAC and raised millions to support their express goal of preventing Trump from being reelected.
Carlson’s smart, relatable conservative takes and willingness to call out spineless Republicans have made him a favorite with Fox News viewers and even with those who don’t regularly watch the network. His Fox News primetime show, Tucker Carlson Tonight recently beat fellow Fox News megastar Sean Hannity’s show in monthly average viewers for October.
Taking note of Carlson’s rising popularity with Trump’s base, media buzz about a possible Carlson 2024 campaign started building in the summer. “No one can dismiss this and say it’s completely implausible,” National Review’s Rich Lowry said of a potential Carlson run in an interview, Politico reported.
“What [Carlson]’s been saying speaks for a lot of people, and it’s basically not expressed or serviced by most Republican politicians. There’s a lot to be said for being fearless, and he is, while Republican politicians, as a breed, are not,” Lowry said.
In September, Vernon Robinson, who runs the pro-Trump super PAC Black Americans to Re-elect the President, predicted a Carlson run. “Tucker Carlson will be the Republican nominee,” Williams told The Independent, “and he will solidify America First …”
Carlson has not publicly commented on whether he would consider leaving the media to run for office, according to The Hill.
Would Trump run again?
As of Saturday morning, the election results were still too close to call. Should Democratic candidate Joe Biden be declared the winner, Trump’s former acting White House chief of staff Mick Mulvaney said Friday that it is “likely” President Donald Trump will run again in 2024. “He doesn’t like losing,” Mulvaney said.
Former aide Steve Bannon suggested the same in an interview with The Australian last month:
I’ll make this prediction right now: If for any reason the election is stolen from, or in some sort of way Joe Biden is declared the winner, Trump will announce he’s going to run for re-election in 2024. You’re not going to see the end of Donald Trump.
Thirty-eight percent of Republican voters surveyed in a recent Washington Examiner/YouGov poll said they would support a Trump 2024 run if he loses this year, while another 34% said he should stay politically active by backing other Republican candidates.
Others who have been named as potential 2024 Republican candidates include former UN Ambassador Nikki Haley, Sen. Tom Cotton (R-AR), Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX), and the president’s eldest son, Donald Trump Jr.