MANCHESTER, N.H. – Former Secretary of State Mike Pompeo says any decision he makes on whether to run for the White House in the upcoming 2024 election cycle will be dependent on whether he believes “this is the moment” where he can best “serve America.”
And Pompeo, a former congressman from Kansas who served as CIA director and later as America’s top diplomat during former President Donald Trump’s administration, inferred in a Fox News interview in the first-in-the-nation presidential primary state of New Hampshire on Thursday that his decision will not be dependent on whether his former boss or whomever else decides to jump into the next Republican presidential nomination race.
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Hours before Pompeo headlined the Hillsborough County GOP’s annual Lincoln Reagan fundraising dinner, Trump indicated in an interview with the Washington Post that if he launches a 2024 bid to try and return to the White House, it’s doubtful that Pompeo, former Vice President Mike Pence, and Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis would also run.
Other Republicans, such as Pence, Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis and former Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, would not want to run against him in a 2024 Republican presidential primary season, he said. None of them have ruled out challenging him.
“If I ran, I can’t imagine they’d want to run. Some out of loyalty would have had a hard time running,” said Trump, who since leaving the White House over 14 months ago has repeatedly flirted with making another presidential bid.
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Asked about those comments and whether his own decision would be impacted by what Trump decides, Pompeo told Fox News, “The Pompeos have always used the simple fact of do you believe this is the moment where you think you can best serve America, this is the place you can have the most impact. That will be how we make our decision in the end.”
“It’s the right way to think about someone who puts themselves forward to the people of the United States to run for office, whether it’s president or back in home state Kansas,” he emphasized. “All of those things, they turn essentially on your belief that you’re the right person to sit in that place. And if you believe in that, you have an obligation to go do it.”
Pompeo’s been busy over the past year, crisscrossing the country to help raise money and support fellow Republicans running in the midterm elections.
“We’re going to keep at this until Election Day in November of this year. I’m confident they’ll be a good outcome. The American people desperately need that,” he stressed.
“I feel really good about how the election’s going to go this November,” he predicted. “I think the American people can see that the country’s headed in the wrong direction. Gasoline prices are through the room. There’s not stuff on shelves in grocery stores. This is unheard of in the United States of America. And I can see that the American people are going to go to polls and elect something that is radically different from what they see in Congress and the United States Senate today, and frankly in school board races and district attorney races and county election offices all across America.”
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Pompeo’s travels have already taken him four times over the past year to Iowa, the state whose caucuses for half a century have kicked off the presidential nominating calendar. His stop on Thursday in New Hampshire – which votes second in the calendar after Iowa – was his third over the past year. And he’s made visits to South Carolina and Nevada, which hold the third and fourth contests in the GOP schedule.
Those visits and the friends he makes now could pay dividends next year and in 2024 if Pompeo decides to launch a presidential campaign.
Matt Mayberry, a longtime Republican activist and former New Hampshire GOP vice chair, told Fox News that these early visits are crucial. “Now you’re sitting and having dinner with activists, you’re in those American Legion halls, those VFW’s, diners. This is actually what counts because in order to build a good house, you need to have a strong foundation,” he emphasized.
Pompeo, a Fox News contributor, concurred, noting that “We are always in the business of making friends because it is through friendships and relationships that you develop good outcomes that matter. I’ve been in this fight for conservative policies since I was a young kid and it always makes a difference that you have friends and allies and partners and colleagues and people who believe in thing that you’re working on and care about.”
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Asked about his timetable, Pompeo reiterated that any decision would come after November’s midterms. And he said, “My wife and I will think and work and pray and make a decision about whether we’re going to reenter public service putting ourselves forward to be holding elective office.”
Pompeo, in his well-received speech, addressed a crowd of approximately 350 Republican leaders and activists in New Hampshire. He jabbed at President Biden in comments that focused national security and foreign policy as he spotlighted his tenure as Secretary of State and CIA director.
But he did venture from his wheelhouse.
Touching on the culture wars and transgender politics, Pompeo said to loud applause that it’s “not OK for men to be in women’s sports.”
And with consumer prices soaring, he took at President Biden’s administration, saying, “Don’t let them tell us that it’s OK that inflations’ only 7%.”