Does Former President Donald Trump want to knock the ‘former’ off of his title? It’s a question the press has been asking broken-record-style since Trump stormed off to Mar-a-Lago on Joe Biden’s inauguration day, 2021. After surviving two impeachments, it would seem unlikely that New York Attorney General’s criminal investigation into his business ventures would deter Trump (via The Guardian). The former head of state is already shrugging off the investigation as “corrupt.” Meanwhile, Trump has pushed himself full-throttle into becoming a public figure again. Before he left for the summer his private club had become, per Trump spokesperson Jason Miller, “the center of the Republican universe … All Republican roads lead to Mar-a-Lago (via The Washington Post).
But if comparing Mar-a-Lago to the heart of the Roman Empire seems like a powerplay to you, according to Republican press pundit Meghan McCain, all of Trump’s post-presidency moves might be for show. On a recent airing of “The View” McCain talked about having her ear to “different channels,” all of which are telling the same story (via Decider).
Why McCain thinks Trump is 'pretty happy right now'
Despite the fact he has flirted with a 2024 political campaign, Meghan McCain doesn’t think that Donald Trump will follow through. “I actually think he won’t end up running,” McCain commented (via Decider). According to McCain, that’s because Trump feels vindicated. “I think he wants to see a lot of things that are happening in the world that he said would come true with Biden’s policies … Everything that I’ve heard through different channels is that he’s actually pretty happy right now and feeling good about his legacy.”
Two observations may help frame McCain’s comments. First, McCain is hardly in Donald Trump’s fan club, so we’re not sure how deep her “different channels” run. After the January 2020 Capitol attacks, McCain called on Congress to invoke the 25th amendment to remove the then-sitting president (via Decider).
Second, McCain’s analysis isn’t, actually, new. Back in December 2020, Politico reported having talked to 11 insiders who suggested that even if Trump did end up throwing his hat in the ring, his primary reason for running for re-election would be to stay relevant. “Trump has probably no idea if he will actually run, but … he will try to freeze the field and keep as many people on the sidelines,” a former White House aide told the media outlet. “Just for the sake of keeping his options open and, yes, keeping the attention all for himself.”
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