- Trump is holding informal off-the-record dinners with donors and supporters, Politico reports.
- The "kitchen cabinet dinners" are meant to provide Trump with feedback ahead of a possible 2024 bid.
- Trump is considering a 2024 run and wants to announce before the 2022 midterms, WaPo reports.
Former President Donald Trump is holding informal, off-the-record meetings around the country with top donors and supporters as he mulls a 2024 presidential bid, Politico reports.
The informal meetings, coordinated through Trump's Save America PAC, are not intended to solicit donations but rather "to get Trump in front of a kitchen cabinet of supporters who, in an easy-going environment" can provide feedback on a potential 2024 run, according to Politico.
A recent New York Times and Siena College poll found that half of Republicans want someone other than Trump to be the nominee in 2024. But Trump still led a hypothetical GOP primary field with 49% of the vote, followed by Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis at 25% and other candidates trailing in the single digits.
Trump backed off his reported plans to announce a 2024 bid before July 4 but still wants to announce before the 2022 midterms, possibly in September, the Washington Post reported on Thursday.
An early announcement before the midterms could limit Trump's fundraising prospects, possibly undermine the GOP in November, and wouldn't help Trump stave off scrutiny from prosecutors, Insider's Kimberly Leonard and Ryan Barber previously reported.
Attendees of the informal dinners have advised Trump to refocus his message away from his grievances and towards policy if he runs again.
Some of the dinner conversations have strayed away from politics, Politico reported. In Las Vegas, where Trump-backed Senate candidate Adam Laxalt and governor candidate Joe Lombardo were in attendance, the group talked about the Ultimate Fighting Championship.
And at a dinner in Nashville, Trump and Georgia GOP Senate candidate "looked on" as Sen. Lindsey Graham and country music singer John Rich engaged in a tense and prolonged back-and-forth over the coronavirus vaccine, Politico reported, with Graham arguing that Trump should take credit for the development of the vaccines on the campaign trail.
Rich opposed the vaccines — and reportedly joked that he should buy a property in South Carolina to mount a primary challenge against Graham.