But between the lines in Stone’s message, I read, “fear.” Why else would Trump have excessively teased his run and still “not made a decision”? Of course, the “Big Tease” has been an effective fundraising platform, banking over $100 million for Trump’s PACs while solidifying his duel status as king of the GOP and MAGA world. And is there any difference between the two? “Yes,” is the answer that brings us to “fight” — the second word explaining why Trump will not run in 2024.
Usually, the 45th president loves fighting, but fighting for his party’s nomination is now beneath his stature and shows weakness. Thus, King Trump wants and believes he deserves the 2024 crown delivered to his Mar-a-Lago palace on a blue satin pillow.
Meanwhile, a fighting bench is forming with numerous former and current officeholders unlikely to bow to Trump’s crowning demands. Most prominent is former Vice President Mike Pence, who is actively “campaigning” focusing on “the future.”
Meanwhile, in Florida, Gov. Ron DeSantis’s recent fundraising email was ostensibly for his reelection campaign but packed with poll-tested, red-meat phrases to gin up the national MAGA base without its baggage-laden founder. I firmly believe that the Republican version of “the future” is “Trumpism without Trump” — anticipating the next generation of leadership, and DeSantis, age 43, fits the bill.