The Republican National Committee will meet behind closed doors this week as some allies of Donald Trump hoped to put the group’s stamp on the former president early in the 2024 Republican presidential nomination campaign.
But a proposed resolution to declare Trump the presumptive nominee has been removed from the agenda before the committee meets in Las Vegas this week, party officials said.
The change comes as the first two state races have narrowed the Republican campaign to two main candidates, with Trump the heavy favorite and former U.N. ambassador Nikki Haley vowing to continue her arduous challenge.
What was expected to be an uneventful Republican National Committee winter meeting in Las Vegas this week briefly gained more attention last week after the resolution, introduced by Maryland Committeeman David Bossie, to name Trump as presumptive nominee.
Bossie was Trump’s deputy campaign manager in 2016 and advised his team when Congress held a second impeachment trial after the Jan. 6, 2021, riot at the U.S. Capitol.
Within hours of the resolution being leaked, Trump rejected the proposal, which some committee members publicly criticized as premature.
“While they have many more votes than necessary to do so, I feel, for the sake of PARTY UNITY, that they should NOT move forward with this plan,” Trump posted on his Truth Social social media platform.
The entire meeting, which runs Tuesday through Friday, is closed to the press, a change from previous practices. The meetings have typically included at least one open general session with a speech by the president at the end of a series of meetings on rules, resolutions and budget, although some meetings have been closed in the past two years.
There is no formal Republican National Committee rule that prevents the party from declaring a presumptive nominee. And there is precedent for such a move. In 2016, then-Republican National Committee Chairman Reince Priebus declared Trump the presumptive nominee after the Indiana primary, although that was in May and Trump had battled Texas Sen. Ted Cruz for three months since Cruz finished first in the Iowa primary ahead of second place. Triumph.
The Associated Press only uses the term once a candidate has won the number of delegates needed to win a majority of votes at the party’s national conventions this summer.
That point won’t come until more states have voted. For both Republicans and Democrats, the earliest it could happen is March.
Republican National Committee Chairwoman Ronna McDaniel suggested last week that Haley had no path to the nomination in light of Trump’s majority votes in the Jan. 15 Iowa caucuses and the Jan. 23 New Hampshire primary. from January.
“We need to unite around our eventual nominee, which will be Donald Trump, and we need to make sure we beat Joe Biden,” McDaniel said in an interview with Fox News the night of the New Hampshire primary.
Haley said Sunday during an appearance on NBC’s “Meet the Press” that the RNC was “clearly not” an honest broker “if you’re going to go and basically tell the American people that you’re going to go and decide who the nominee is going to be.” “It’s after only two states have voted.”
“The American people want a say in who their candidate will be,” he said. “We need to give them that. I mean, you can’t do that based on just two states.”