Despite his overwhelming popularity among Republican voters, President Donald Trump has made more than a few enemies within the GOP establishment.
While some influential Republicans might be excited about the prospective end of the president’s administration, his influence within the party at large does not seem to be waning.
“An oversized voice in the party”
Pointing to the results of a recent Rasmussen Reports survey, columnist Paul Bedard argued that Trump is on pace to remain a pivotal force for some time to come.
Pollsters contacted 1,000 likely voters over a two-day period beginning on Dec. 21 and found that 72% of GOP respondents said the president is “the role model” for the Republican Party. In contrast, less than 1 in 4 said they believe “the average Republican in Congress” constitutes a better standard for the party.
Among likely voters across the ideological spectrum, however, the results were reversed. While 4 in 10 said they believe Republicans should emulate Trump, a larger share — 45% — say congressional Republicans offer a better example.
Bedard pointed out in the Washington Examiner that even Republican Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan, a frequent Trump critic, has acknowledged that Trump will continue to hold sway over “a big chunk” of the Republican Party after leaving office.
“He certainly has an oversized voice in the party,” Hogan said during an ABC News interview on Sunday.
“Not going away”
The governor went on to tell host George Stephanopoulos that there is “no question” Trump is “not going away” after he leaves the White House, asserting that many Republicans will “still follow his Twitter page and listen to what he has to say.”
Of course, there are a few other prominent GOP names vying for influence, according to the Rasmussen poll.
Among those who “rank at the top of alternative candidates,” Bedard wrote, are Vice President Mike Pence and Trump’s son, Donald Trump Jr.
The president has reportedly hinted that he is interested in launching a bid for a nonsequential second term in 2024 if he is unsuccessful in overturning the media-declared results of last month’s election.
Rasmussen found, however, that more than half of Republican voters say the party “should look for a fresh face to run in 2024.”