Mike Pence says he could run for president in 2024 even if Trump also runs
KENNESAW, Ga. – Former Vice President Mike Pence served notice Monday that he may seek the White House himself in 2024 – regardless of whether Donald Trump himself runs again.
“We’ll go where we’re called,” Pence told The New York Times in an interview published Monday.
The comments surfaced just ahead of Pence's appearance on behalf of Georgia Gov. Brian Kemp, whom Trump is attacking in a Tuesday primary in Georgia. Pence's appearance will be the latest breach in the relationship between the two.
The Trump team greeted Pence's endorsement of Kemp and his 2024 talk with a scathing statement saying that the former president rescued the political career of the former Indiana governor.
“Mike Pence was set to lose a Governor’s race in 2016 before he was plucked up and his political career was salvaged," said Taylor Budowich, a spokesman for Trump. "Now, desperate to chase his lost relevance, Pence is parachuting in to races, hoping someone is paying attention."
Trump is backing former Sen. David Perdue in Tuesday's primary race against Kemp. Trump targeted the Georgia governor because Kemp refused to help overturn Trump's loss of Georgia to President Joe Biden in the 2020 presidential election.
Polls give Kemp a huge lead over Perdue, and the incumbent GOP governor could win the Republican nomination on Tuesday without a runoff.
Pence, who was threatened by pro-Trump rioters during the insurrection of Jan. 6, 2021, has steadily distanced himself from Trump in the year and a half since they left office together.
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The former vice president has said Trump was wrong to say that he, Pence, had the authority to throw out 2020 electoral votes because of fraud allegations and essentially hand the election to Trump. Pence said he followed the law in presiding over the Electoral College vote count by Congress.
Pence also criticized Trump's favorable attitude toward Russian President Vladimir Putin by saying that the Republican Party has no room in it for "Putin apologists."
Now the Kemp endorsement has widened the dispute between the former president and vice president.
Trump is considering another presidential run in 2024, but Pence said that won't influence his own decision one way or the other. Pence told the Times that he and his wife would pray on the matter.
"That’s the way Karen and I have always approached these things," Pence said.