Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) said Tuesday that the party will have a “stuffed field” of candidates for president in 2024.
Asked how he would respond to the possibility of former President Donald Trump launching another race, McConnell provided a broad assessment of what he hopes the primary race will look like.
“I think we’re going to have a full field for president,” he said, without referring to Trump. “I guess most of that will play out later and people will pick their candidates during a crowded primary field.”
While McConnell previously called Trump “morally responsible” for the Jan. 6, 2021 insurrection, he also said he would still vote for the former president if he were the party’s nominee.
“I think I have an obligation to support my party’s candidate,” McConnell told Axios’ Jonathan Swan in April.
Although Trump lost the 2020 election, he remains a powerful figure in the Republican Party. Trump has so far endorsed more than 200 candidates across the country, according to The New York Times. Some of his endorsements, including JD Vance in the Ohio Senate Republican primarythey were considered essential for the candidates to secure victory.
Trump has yet to announce his own 2024 candidacy, but he told Olivia Nuzzi from New York magazine on July 11 that he believes he would be successful if he chose to do so.
“Look,” he said, “I feel very confident that if I decide to run, I will win.”
The former president added that his big decision will be whether to launch his candidacy before or after the midterm elections in November.
trump fundraising recently has been successfulslowing in the first half of 2022 for the first time since he left office in January 2021. This is in contrast to other Republicans, including Florida Governor Ron DeSantis, who is seen as a top contender.
Other Republicans could jump into the fray, including former US ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley, who gave her biggest hint yet on Monday.
“No deal is better than a bad deal,” he said, criticizing President Joe Biden for trying to reinstate the 2015 Iran nuclear deal. according to the hill. “And if this president signs some kind of agreement, I will make you a promise. The next president will tear it to shreds on her first day in office.”
“I’m just saying sometimes you need a woman,” he continued.
This article originally appeared on HuffPost and has been updated.