Taking another page out of the playbook of his predecessor, Barack Obama, former president Donald Trump plans to use his new office in a sort of kingmaker capacity, interviewing and screening candidates to assume the MAGA mantle.
According to Politico, Trump has become “unreachable” to all but his innermost circle in the month since he peacefully handed over power to President Joe Biden—after having exhausted all possible legal and political remedies for the widespread vote fraud that occurred during last year’s election.
But that may soon change, with the former president set to begin interviewing aspiring MAGA-supporting candidates as early as March.
“We are in the process of putting together a more formal schedule for candidates who want to come get his endorsement,” said senior Trump adviser Jason Miller,” according to a recent Politico article.
Attention on Trump’s plans to vet candidates came after news broke that he had rejected a meeting request from his former United Nations ambassador, Nikki Haley.
Haley, who may be planning a 2024 GOP primary run, duplicitously claimed recently that her ex-boss had “let [the GOP] down.”
However, Trump has reportedly met with former campaign manager Brad Parscale about beginning a new online fundraising push.
“Now that Trump has survived his second Senate impeachment trial, he has shifted his focus to post-presidential activism—a venture mostly bankrolled by his new leadership PAC, Save America, which had $31 million in its coffers at the start of this month,” Politico reported.
He also was said to have met with a longtime congressional ally, House Minority Whip Steve Scalise, R-La.
Following Trump’s high-profile spat with Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, battle lines were quickly being drawn for control of the GOP.
Some see the likelihood of a third-party split, which could potentially leave the centrist Republican Party as the weakest of the three major contenders.
Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-SC, was also expected to meet soon with Trump. Although largely regarded as one of Trump’s top Senate allies, Graham has frequently straddled the center line and maintained a foothold in the corrupt DC Establishment.
Graham has recently played the role of intermediary between the McConnell loyalists and the Trump faction as he tries to preserve the party’s political viability amid unprecedented power-grabs from the radical Left.
“I’m more worried about 2022 than I’ve ever been,” he told Fox News. “I don’t want to eat our own.”
But others maintain that the internal GOP wranglings are largely media-driven and overwrought.
Case in point, Trump planned on Saturday to host a Mar-a-Lago fundraising dinner for Sen. Mike Lee, R-Utah, who has never been shy about breaking rank when his libertarian leanings conflicted with the Trump agenda.
What happens next on “As Trump Turns”? pic.twitter.com/K1m8tEZe05
— Marc Caputo (@MarcACaputo) February 20, 2021
While Trump’s 2016 victory, likewise, led pundits to declare that Democrats were politically dead in the water, no such demands ever materialized that their de facto party leader at the time should step aside in the interest of preserving party unity.
In fact, mainstream media outlets fawned repeatedly over the fact that Obama, in his post-presidency, had opened an office in Washington, DC’s West End, only a mile from the White House, leasing space in the building occupied by the World Wildlife Fund.
There, according to some, like the Washington Post, he “managed to become invisible” while others noted during the Democratic primaries that a steady stream of hopefuls quietly made the “pilgrimage” to seek his endorsement.
Although many of the candidates Obama endorsed wound up performing poorly in either the primary or the general election, there seems to be little doubt that he still exerts a significant role in the behind-the-scenes play-calling of the current puppet government.
For his part, Obama discouraged Biden from running, reportedly telling him “You don’t have to do this, Joe,” and later venting to insiders, “Don’t underestimate Joe’s ability to f**k things up,” according to Politico.
But Obama is believed to have resigned himself to the Biden presidency shortly before Super Tuesday, when the race narrowed to Biden and left-wing extremist Bernie Sanders.
He may have brokered a deal with remaining candidates—including Pete Buttigieg and Amy Klobuchar—to encourage them to withdraw.
In return, the Biden campaign may have deferred to Obama’s favored vice presidential pick, then-California Sen. Kamala Harris, who was among the first to withdraw from the presidential primary.
Despite the widely reported acrimony between Obama and his former vice president, in what appeared to be a Freudian slip, former candidate Hillary Clinton suggested days before the election that it was Obama holding the strings.
“You know, I’ve told the Obama campaign, I mean, the Obama—I’ve told the Biden campaign and the Biden transition, that they’re going to have to move really fast,” she said in a SiriusXM interview.