After former President Trump said he would not be attending the first GOP primary debate on Wednesday, the former president’s former press secretary, Kayleigh McEnany, reportedly claimed on Monday that her former employer is giving Biden an excuse not to debate him in the general election.
“The indication is former President Trump will not be here. And the takeaway from that is this is a huge political miscalculation, I would say, for him for two reasons: You give others the opportunity to shine. You give others two hours to throw lobs at you.” McEnany said.
“And I know former President Trump can dance across that debate stage, can defend himself — but you’re not there to do it yourself,” she continued.
McEnany cited a Politico article from February that claimed Biden’s team had seen Republicans’ reluctance to cooperate with the Commission on Presidential Debates, which would lower the likelihood and risk of a head-to-head debate.
“So Biden can say, ‘I’m going to use the Trump precedent here; I’m not showing up; my internal polls show me — show I’m up,” McEnany stated.
The first presidential primary discussion for 2024 will be held on Wednesday night, and it will feature Republican contenders. Trump is one of at least eight GOP candidates who have attained the necessary financial and polling thresholds to participate in the opening debate.
However, citing his large lead in the polls, Trump stated on Sunday that he will not participate in the debate on Wednesday and hinted that he may do so in the future as well.