“Could Trump become US President again in 2024?”

Aug 27, 2022
Bobble head dolls of various political figures are seen on a gift shop's window display.
Image: iStock

However unpalatable the thought, It is time to start getting our heads around the fact that Trump may stand and may well regain the US presidency in November 2024.

Most US states ‘ midterm election primaries have already been held, with just seven states to go before the 8 November 2022 midterm elections, in which the Democrats are widely expected to do badly. On the Republican side, pro-Trump candidates have been sweeping the board, most spectacularly in the loss this week in the Wyoming primary of eminent anti-Trump senior Republican Liz Cheney to an unknown pro-Trump candidate. Remaining are only Florida, New York, Oklahoma (runoff), Massachusetts, Delaware, New Hampshire, Rhode Island and Louisiana.

It is already rather clear from primaries so far that the Democrats on 8 November are likely to lose their present fragile control of the Senate ( currently split evenly but with one Democratic Party Speaker’s casting vote) and of the lower House of Congress (currently 220 Democratic, 211 Republican, and 4 vacancies); and that many of the incoming new elected representatives in both houses will be pro-Trump. This will change the character of American politics.

For Biden, about whom there has been damaging recent speculation from within the Democratic Party, so far denied by those close to him– that he would not stand again for President – the next two years of preparation for the November 2024 Presidential election will not be easy. There is a dearth of attractive and capable Democratic successor candidates – all are either shop soiled, been around too long, or demonstrably lacking presidential gravitas. In the end, Biden may have to stand again, faute de mieux.

The signs point increasingly to a possible successful Trump return to the presidency in November 2024, barring an unexpectedly popular wild card candidate like Tucker Carlson, Trump’s death , disability, or his successful indictment on criminal charges prosecution – all possibilities. Certainly the FBI – now reviled by some even mainstream Republicans as a politicised police force – will be trying hard to legally trip up Trump. Interesting times.

Meanwhile, it looks as though the Victor Bout, Brittney Griner and Paul Whelan US-Russian prisoner swaps will have to wait till after the 8 November midterm elections. The Kremlin has complained of unhelpful US publicity of the proposed swaps – to the effect of US leaks that they were almost in the bag. Whether or not this is true, Putin would not at this point want to give Biden any ammunition to claim that he is managing the US – Russia relationship well. Putin knows that Trump would resent this and bear a grudge. So the three prisoners will probably have to wait patiently for a few more months till after 8 November. It is likely that the exchange will thereafter happen quietly.

The interesting thing here is that Putin is already factoring a possible Trump resurgence into his political calculations.

So should we. For better or worse, Australia could be dealing with a lame duck and discouraged Democratic administration in 2023-24, and a resurgent and unpredictable second-term President Trump from January 2025. No amount of wishful thinking in Canberra will change this – the outcome. is completely outside Australia’s control.

This suggests Australia should be seeking new international friends as well as the US/UK Five Eyes Anglo basket into which Morrison has locked us. We need to be restoring our relations as an independent country, not just a familiar US satrap, with ASEAN, India, the Koreas, China and – dare I say the forbidden word – Russia.

Will the Albanese administration have the wit to see this?

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