Trump world is preparing for a possible mid-November campaign launch
Shelby is a Political Reporter for Semafor, joining us from the Daily Caller. Sign up for the daily Principals newsletter to get our insider’s guide to American power.
The timing of Donald Trump’s potential 2024 announcement remains flexible, but sources confirm the week of November 14 has been mentioned within the former president’s orbit.
Even for those close to the former president, pinning down an exact day remains difficult and there have been a number of false alarms over the last year.
But this time there will be one big difference: The midterms were seen as a big red line for many of his advisers, with many national Republicans urging Trump to wait so as not to distract from GOP candidates.
“The argument to hold off a little longer, it’s nowhere near as spirited or strong than the argument to hold after the election,” one person familiar with Trump team’s deliberations told Semafor. “The opposition to announcing in November is not as strong at all.”
The timing of announcing just ahead of Thanksgiving could also be seen as a strategic move. If the former president makes a 2024 announcement the week of Thanksgiving, it means “everyone is talking about it” as they gather with their families across the country, that person noted.
Still, a November 14 announcement date – or even that week – remains in flux. One person close to the former president noted that multiple different dates have been suggested, and that it changes depending on Trump’s “mood on any given day.” A third person within Trump’s orbit described the date as “50-50,” pointing out that the specific week makes sense, but anything can happen when the story involves Trump.
Axios, which first reported the November 14 date, noted that an announcement will be followed “by a multi-day series of political events.” Notably, the former president’s Mar-a-Lago home will host a two-day gala for the America First Policy Institute (AFPI), a think tank organized by Trump veterans, at the end of that week. The former president spoke at the event last year and is expected to attend again this month, according to one person familiar with the schedule.
If the former president goes ahead with this timeline, he could successfully knock off at least some 2024 competition, but certainly not all. Trump remains fixated on Florida Governor Ron DeSantis as a potential 2024 enemy in particular, though the governor’s camp hasn’t publicly confirmed any plans for a presidential run, instead opting to focus on his re-election campaign.
While some Trump allies believe DeSantis will sit out should the former president announce a 2024 bid, others assume he’ll run regardless. In recent weeks, the cold war between the two has begun heating up — during a rally Saturday evening, Trump touted his poll numbers and referred to the Florida governor as “Ron De-Sanctimonious.”
The latest comment suggests Trump is prepping for a fight, and views DeSantis as his most significant foe so far in the potential 2024 presidential field.