Sen. Mitt Romney, who himself has a serious Republican challenger in Utah for his seat this election cycle, has concocted another plan to prevent former President Donald Trump from winning the 2024 GOP nomination.
OPINION: This article may contain commentary which reflects the author’s opinion.
Romney believes Trump will easily sew up the nomination unless it comes down to a race between him and only one other Republican challenger.
Then, he says, it is a free-for-all at that point, according to The Wall Street Journal.
“Despite Donald Trump’s apparent inevitability, a baker’s dozen Republicans are hoping to become the party’s 2024 nominee for president. That is possible for any of them if the field narrows to a two-person race before Mr. Trump has the nomination sewn up,” he said Wednesday.
“For that to happen, Republican megadonors and influencers—large and small—are going to have to do something they didn’t do in 2016: get candidates they support to agree to withdraw if and when their paths to the nomination are effectively closed,” he noted further.
“That decision day should be no later than, say, Feb. 26, the Monday following the contests in Iowa, New Hampshire, Nevada and South Carolina,” he continued. “There are incentives for no-hope candidates to overstay their prospects.
“Coming in behind first place may grease another run in four years or have market value of its own: Mike Huckabee and Rick Santorum got paying gigs,” the Utah ‘Republican’ continued.
“And as former New Hampshire Gov. John H. Sununu has observed, ‘It is fun running for president if you know you cannot win,'” he added.
“Left to their own inclinations, expect several of the contenders to stay in the race for a long time. They will split the non-Trump vote, giving him the prize. A plurality is all that is needed for winner-take-all primaries,” Romney noted further.
“Donors who are backing someone with a slim chance of winning should seek a commitment from the candidate to drop out and endorse the person with the best chance of defeating Mr. Trump by Feb. 26,” he said.
“Our party and our country need a nominee with character, driven by something greater than revenge and ego, preferably from the next generation,” he added.
“Family, friends and campaign donors are the only people who can get a lost-cause candidate to exit the race. After Feb. 26, they should start doing just that,” he said.