Themacforums – Trump Heads to South Carolina Amid Growing Headwinds in State. In South Carolina, a crucial early primary state that will host over the weekend one of the first high-profile stops of former president Trump’s 2024 presidential campaign, political headwinds are growing more intense.
Others are staying away from Trump, despite the fact that he has already received support from well-known South Carolina Republicans like Gov. Henry McMaster and Sen. Lindsey Graham, both of whom are scheduled to attend his speech on Saturday at the state Capitol in Columbia.
Tim Scott (R), the state’s junior senator, has reportedly given Trump’s 2024 campaign no support and is reportedly considering running for president himself. Similarly, influential South Carolina Republican and former UN ambassador Nikki Haley have intimated that she is considering a White House bid.
Several Republicans in the state warned that Trump’s hold on South Carolina’s GOP voters is much shakier than it once was and that there are emerging rumblings of support for Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis (R).
According to Alex Stroman, a former executive director of the South Carolina GOP, “Donald Trump is coming to South Carolina because it’s a key state, but he’s trying to actually lock up some of that support.” And I believe that support to be quite flimsy.
He said: “I know folks who have backed him who have felt a little compelled to do it and had to, but don’t plan on being with him when the election arrives early next year in South Carolina.”
The former president may also have a chance to gain support in a state with an early primary and a history of selecting presidential nominees thanks to the visit.
According to Republican strategist Ford O’Connell, “South Carolina was really the divisive blow for him in terms of winning the 2016 Republican presidential nomination.”
Additionally, despite a decline in support after leaving office, according to national polls, Trump still enjoys support from both Republicans and non-Republicans alike.
According to a recent Emerson College poll, Trump would have a 3-point advantage over President Biden in a hypothetical head-to-head contest. The same poll also indicated that, in a fictitious Republican primary, Trump would lead DeSantis by 26 points.
It’s time to capitalize on the fact that you can see he is gathering momentum, O’Connell added.
Trump’s Saturday appearance at the state Capitol is anticipated to be less of a spectacle than his usual rallies, which frequently gather tens of thousands of supporters. According to a South Carolina Republican, the former president’s associates have been calling the state’s potential supporters in recent weeks to drum up support and participants for the event.
The guy remarked, “I think for now you have a lot of people hedging their bets.” “I don’t think some of the people that you would anticipate to show up would. In the past few days, I’ve spoken with a number of people, but not many of them have said, “I’m coming to see the former president on Saturday; come out and show support.
Trump campaign spokesman Steven Cheung rejected the idea that the populace may be losing interest in the previous president.
President Trump will introduce his leadership teams, demonstrating the wide-ranging support he has from elected officials to grassroots leaders, according to Cheung. He has maintained his lead in the polls, and no other candidate is as capable of igniting excitement as President Trump.
The South Carolina Policy Council, a conservative think tank, last week produced a poll that offered some preliminary indications of Trump’s difficulties. Only 37% of probable South Carolina Republican primary voters agreed that Trump should be the party’s nominee in 2024, while 47% indicated they would rather see another candidate.
DeSantis might be that other person. According to the poll, if the Florida governor and Donald Trump faced off directly, the governor would be ahead by a startling 19 points.
In a recent poll conducted by his organization, 54 percent of voters said that the country would be better off if neither Donald Trump nor Joe Biden was elected president the following year. Dallas Woodhouse, a longtime Republican operative and executive director of the South Carolina Policy Council, noted a growing desire for change among voters in both parties.
Not that these folks wouldn’t support Trump if he were the nominee, according to Woodhouse. However, they do want the choice to select someone else at this time.
GOP voters in South Carolina and elsewhere, according to Woodhouse and other Republicans, “want to win and see some fresh ideas,” and there are lingering doubts about whether Trump is the candidate most qualified to retake the White House in light of the party’s disappointing showing in the 2022 midterm elections.
Woodhouse remarked, “I get the impression that Republicans are just walloped by inflation, that they have a want to get back to arguing issues.” “Trump’s problem is that you can’t argue the underlying issues. Or is Trump always the problem? And I believe that some voters are beginning to believe the opposite.
Trump’s trip to South Carolina on Saturday will be his first significant outing in support of his third presidential bid since he announced it in November. He is not the only Republican to visit the Palmetto State, though.
Mike Pompeo, a former secretary of state, spoke at a significant Republican fundraiser held in the region last year and has been running digital advertisements there as he considers vying for the GOP presidential nomination in 2024. Former vice president Mike Pence has also visited the state a number of times in a bid to increase his popularity among evangelical voters.
Both Haley and Scott, who are from South Carolina, continue to be “very, very popular” there, according to Woodhouse. Former South Carolina governor Haley, who earlier this month told Fox News that it’s “time for new generational change,” has been particularly aggressive in positioning herself for a 2024 run.
And it seems like the GOP ecosystem is picking up on that sentiment.
These individuals, according to Stroman, “truly represent ways of winning over a broad coalition of voters like Ron DeSantis did in Florida,” including Nikki Haley, Tim Scott, Ron DeSantis, and Glenn Youngkin.
But many South Carolina Republicans claim that DeSantis is the party’s main draw.
Stroman asserted that Ron DeSantis would be more popular and attract more supporters if he appeared in South Carolina on Saturday than Donald Trump would.