By Morgan Gstalter
Former acting White House chief of staff Mick Mulvaney said Thursday that he “absolutely” expects President Trump to run again in 2024 if he loses his current reelection bid.
Mulaney, who serves as special envoy for Northern Ireland, made the prediction while participating in a webinar hosted by the Dublin think tank Institute for International and European Affairs.
“I would absolutely expect the president to stay involved in politics and would absolutely put him on the shortlist of people who are likely to run in 2024,” Mulvaney said, according to The Irish Times.
Mulvaney, who also served as Trump’s director of the Office of Management and Budget, noted that the president would be younger than Democratic nominee Joe Biden is now should he run again in four years.
He described Trump as a “very high-energy 74-year-old” and expects him to be “further engaged in 2024 or 2028 if he were to lose this next election.”
Mulvaney added that Trump “doesn’t like losing.” However, he rejected suggestions that Trump’s decision to file a series of lawsuits in battleground states still counting votes is a threat to democracy.
“It should not surprise anybody that there are lawyers and that there are lawsuits, and it is not a tacit admission of loss, any more than it is a declaration of victory,” he said.
Earlier Thursday, Mulvaney vowed that Trump would facilitate a peaceful transition of power should Biden come out the ultimate victor.
“If the process runs, and I expect it to run, and at the end of that process Joe Biden’s the president, you can absolutely guarantee a peaceful transition of power. I just hope the same is true on the other side,” Mulvaney told CNBC.
He reiterated his remarks during the webinar, according to The Irish Times.
“Could things get really sloppy and messy and slow between now and then? Absolutely. They were, by the way, in 2000 as well, yet we managed to work through it,” he said, referring to the contested George W. Bush-Al Gore election.
“American elections can be a sloppy, ugly thing but it’s sort of like making law which we describe as making sausage: No one wants to see it happen but you enjoy the end product,” he added.
Trump prematurely declared victory early Wednesday even though millions of votes were still being counted across multiple states, asserting that he had won states including Georgia and North Carolina.
Those states still have not been called as of Thursday afternoon. Trump holds a narrowing lead in Georgia of less than 15,000 votes amid the ongoing count. In North Carolina, he holds an approximately 76,000-vote lead.
Biden leads in Nevada and Arizona and is gaining steadily on Trump in Pennsylvania as more voters are counted.