RNC donor retreat assembles strong lineup of possible VP picks

2PK11EF Palm Beach, United States. 04th Apr, 2023. Former President Donald J. Trump talks to the media and supporters after returning to Mar-a-Lago in Palm Beach, Florida, on Tuesday, April 4, 2023. Trump spent the day in New York City at his arraignment on criminal charges and pleaded not guilty to 34 felony counts of falsifying business records. Photo by Gary I Rothstein/UPI Credit: UPI/Alamy Live News

Photo: Alamy

President Trump hosted a donor retreat for the Republican National Committee over the weekend, pulling in a slate of conservative all-stars rumored to be in the running for vice president.

The retreat put the newly-reformed RNC in the spotlight, featuring co-chair Lara Trump, who co-hosted a reception for the retreat along with Speaker of the House Mike Johnson, R-La., according to reports.

Prominent Republicans took the stage with President Trump at one point, revealing a lineup of people who could possibly be a contender to be on Trump’s 2024 ticket. Attendees include Gov. Doug Burgum, R-N.D., Rep. Byron Donalds, R-Fla., Rep. Elise Stefanik, R-N.Y., Sen. J.D. Vance, R-Ohio, and Sen. Tim Scott, R-S.C.

Another notable figure standing right behind Trump, just off his right shoulder on stage, was Vivek Ramaswamy, a businessman who ran a 2024 presidential campaign and who has now thrown his support behind the president’s candidacy.

According to The Hill, South Dakota Gov. Kristi Noem (R) and Sen. Marco Rubio, R-Fla., were additionally in attendance. Gov. Noem, however, was not pictured onstage with Trump.

Following the retreat, President Trump cryptically reposted a picture on Truth Social from the event, which included a comment from conservative commentator Benny Johnson that read: “Is Donald Trump’s VP on this stage?”

This has only fueled speculation that the president’s potential vice presidential pick attended the RNC donor retreat. According to a report from The New York Times, President Trump took the stage to speak to the donors, delivering a 75-minute speech aimed at scorching Biden’s weaponization of the justice system and deftly encouraging high-dollar donors in attendance to open their wallets for the RNC this year.

Per audio from the NYT, Trump told attendees of the legal battles he is facing this year: “These people are running a Gestapo administration. And it’s the only thing they have. And it’s the only way they’re going to win, in their opinion, and it’s actually killing them. But it doesn’t bother me.”

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