Trump courts early-state Republicans at Mar-a-Lago

Trump’s workforce is transferring to handle a number of the issues that arose throughout his disorganized — although in the end profitable — 2016 marketing campaign, when his then-primary rival Ted Cruz appeared like he would possibly outmaneuver him within the combat for delegates. Trump in the end introduced in Paul Manafort to supervise his delegate efforts, however he nonetheless confronted a messy conference the place he was compelled to beat again pockets of opposition from delegates waging a failed effort to cease his nomination.

The insider-driven course of that decides who will get chosen as a conference delegate in every state will unfold subsequent 12 months, and the positions are sometimes awarded to occasion officers and others who’ve been concerned in GOP actions.

This time, Trump is making a degree to succeed in out to would-be conference delegates, seeking to capitalize on his head-start within the 2024 race to make inroads earlier than rivals who’re simply getting began with their organizational efforts.

In Iowa, Trump has positioned full-page adverts in Republican Get together publications for the previous two years, and final 12 months, he gave the state GOP chairman, longtime Trump ally Jeff Kaufmann, a talking slot at a rally he held within the state. Kaufmann’s son, state Rep. Bobby Kaufmann, was lately named an adviser to Trump’s marketing campaign.

In New Hampshire, Trump lately made an look earlier than the state GOP and has employed the previous state occasion chairman, Stephen Stepanek, as a senior adviser.

And final 12 months in South Carolina, Trump sponsored a breakfast and spoke remotely to the South Carolina Republican Get together’s government committee. In 2021, Trump endorsed Drew McKissick for his profitable bid to state GOP chair and later featured McKissick as a speaker at a rally he hosted in Florence, S.C. (Nevertheless, Trump endorsed one other candidate over McKissick, the eventual victor, on this 12 months’s RNC co-chair race.)

The Thursday dinner was attended by Trump advisers Susie Wiles, Brian Jack, Alex Latcham and Jason Miller. Jack, who helped to steer Trump’s 2016 conference efforts and who has additionally served as a prime political adviser to Home Speaker Kevin McCarthy, has been overseeing the outreach to state events.

The Nevada delegation included state occasion chairman Mike McDonald, a longtime ally of the previous president, and Republican Nationwide Committeeman Jim DeGraffenreid. Earlier than eating with Trump, the state occasion leaders acquired a briefing from Trump aides on the 2024 marketing campaign.

Trump through the dinner didn’t specify when he would marketing campaign in Nevada, the place he owns a resort on the Las Vegas Strip. However the former president made clear he would journey there within the months to come back. He has made stops this 12 months in two different early-voting states, New Hampshire and South Carolina, and he’s set to marketing campaign in Iowa on March 13.

Different candidates have additionally been ramping up their early state campaigning. Former U.N. Ambassador Nikki Haley has frolicked in a number of key states since launching her marketing campaign final month.

Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis, in the meantime, is about to seem in Iowa on March 10 – his first cease within the state, which historically hosts the occasion’s first nominating contest. DeSantis has one other occasion lined up in Las Vegas the following day.

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