Who Will Trump Pick for VP? It’s much too early to speculate about who Donald Trump’s running mate could be, but the guessing game is exciting and worth speculating about, even in this early stage.
This exercise gives a glimpse into the future leadership of the GOP and which conservative personalities have the most political juice heading into 2024. First, Trump has obviously not won the nomination, although he is comfortably ahead in many polls. Second, most vice presidents are not chosen until the summer before voting begins in November, so we have several months before the nominee makes his or her pick. Third, Trump’s camp has already said the former president has not considered who would be his running mate and that handicapping who that person is would be a fool’s errand at this point.
But it sure is fun. And with that…
Nikki Haley: Could Trump Pick Her?
Nevertheless, I’ll take a look at who has the best shot at becoming vice president in a Trump administration.
The first pick would likely be former UN ambassador and ex-South Carolina Governor Nikki Haley (provided she does not win the nomination). Trump already has a working relationship with Haley. She served the president faithfully and avoided controversy and most important, did not overshadow the president or get fired and turn into an enemy.
Haley would help Trump attract women to the ticket. Trump has often underperformed with college-educated single women and married women who live in suburbs. Haley could be the answer to those difficulties. She is also relatively young at 51 and would provide an energetic boost to the campaign.
Next up would be South Carolina Senator Tim Scott. Scott is expected to announce his own run for the presidency on May 22. Scott has a Reaganesque and sunny personality who believes in conservative philosophy without the bullying and rancor that Trump is known for. He is a domestic policy wonk and has legislative solutions to many problems in the country that Republicans care about such as parental rights, the budget deficit, and border security.
Scott has an inspiring personal story of someone who came from poverty and was raised by a single mother. He had a well-received speech in answer to Biden’s first State of the Union speech in 2021. He is an able fund raiser and should have the money (around $22 million now) to remain in the race past the early states. Scott could help Trump attract minority voters to his election re-match against Biden.
My next choice for a potential VP pick would be Vivek Ramaswamy. The conservative biotech entrepreneur and best-selling author is perhaps more charismatic, articulate, and telegenic than Haley and Scott. He knows how to rile up the base and has vowed to disband and replace the FBI and IRS, a scenario that would make many in the anti-woke conservative movement giddy. Ramaswamy, an Indian-American, has a great personal story having been successful in the business world with the ability to fight it out in the culture wars. However, he is inexperienced and probably too young to be vice president at 37, so Trump would likely think that these disadvantages would not help the ticket.
Best of the Rest for Trump
Lake loves Trump and believes he rightfully won the presidency in 2020. Lake is fighting her own quixotic bid to be named governor by the courts of Arizona even though she lost the election in 2022. But Lake has a caustic and volatile personality and Trump may want someone less bitter to balance the ticket.
Noem would be another believable choice, but she even admits that she would be shocked to be named as a running mate. She has much upside and has a future in the party, perhaps as a cabinet secretary in a Trump administration instead of VP. Noem could also attract more women to the party.
Greene could be considered by Trump. Greene has made her intentions to become vice president someday known. She is ambitious and is used to the national spotlight. But Greene is divisive and prone to mis-speaking with her share of conspiracy theories and questionable statements. Greene would not bring college-educated single women and suburban moms to the Republican cause due to her bluster on controversial subjects.
Finally, Florida Governor Ron DeSantis is seen by many Trump-supporters as their second choice, but it is not likely that the former president would pick him to be VP. There is way too much bad blood between the two.
There you have it. Let the debate begin. If I missed anyone be sure to hit the comment button below and include who you think would be Trump’s running mate. I know it’s early but hopefully you will now have an idea of who the future leaders of the party are, and you also may have a new favorite to root for or root against if you happen to be a Republican.
Author Expertise and Experience: Serving as 19FortyFive’s Defense and National Security Editor, Dr. Brent M. Eastwood is the author of Humans, Machines, and Data: Future Trends in Warfare. He is an Emerging Threats expert and former U.S. Army Infantry officer. You can follow him on Twitter @BMEastwood. He holds a Ph.D. in Political Science and Foreign Policy/ International Relations.