Rupert Murdoch, fellow billionaires push Trump on favored VP picks, while insiders battle who’s best for the job

Billionaires, including Rupert Murdoch, are reportedly in a rush to tell former President Donald Trump whom to pick as his VP.

In Murdoch’s case, the choice is clear: Virginia Gov. Glenn Youngkin, according to sources who spoke with CNBC.

For other billionaires, the choices are starkly different.

“Ike Perlmutter, a billionaire and former chairman of Marvel Entertainment, told Trump he thinks the former president should choose New York Rep. Elise Stefanik,” CNBC reported Wednesday.

“Billionaire Trump backers in the real estate industry have told the former president’s advisers that they like South Carolina Sen. Tim Scott,” the reporting continues.

Oracle chairman Larry Ellison has also pitched Scott to Trump.

Then there’s Sen. Marco Rubio, who’s evidently popular among a large contingent of right-wingers.

“Florida GOP Sen. Marco Rubio’s popularity was on display last weekend at the Four Seasons in Palm Beach, where wealthy Republicans gathered for the spring meeting of the Republican National Committee,” CNBC notes.

“A person attending the retreat said Rubio was clearly the most desirable speaker for donors to pose for ‘grip and grin’ photos with. Other VP contenders at the weekend meeting included Stefanik, Scott and North Dakota Gov. Doug Burgum. The retreat also included a lunch at Mar-a-Lago with Trump,” according to CNBC.

This passion over Trump’s potential VP choice also goes the other way, in that there are certain would-be vice presidents that the billionaires really, really, really aren’t feeling.

“I would imagine some of Trump’s trade agenda is pretty concerning for many donors, and they would hope for someone there to offer a different perspective to a 10% tariff across the board,” Marc Short, the former chief of staff to ex-VP Mike Pence, told CNBC, highlighting one of Trump’s more populist economic proposals.

Indeed, according to CNBC, they’re especially worried about Sen. J.D. Vance and entrepreneur/former presidential candidate Vivek Ramaswamy.

“Widely considered a serious contender in the ‘veep stakes,’ Vance is an Ivy League-educated populist who backs higher tariffs and aggressive business regulation,” CNBC notes.

The opposition to Ramaswamy reportedly runs even deeper, with an anonymous GOP lobbyist claiming donors have threatened to pull all their support from the Republican Party if he’s chosen as VP.

“Good Lord, if it’s him, I’m out,” is reportedly their message to Trump and others in the GOP, according to the lobbyist.

Other donors meanwhile are focused on rooting out a potential VP who could help Trump win reelection — someone, for example, who’s good at fundraising, a crucial need for the former president.

“Trump has struggled to keep up with President Joe Biden’s fundraising juggernaut,” CNBC notes. “In March, the former president’s campaign raised $15 million, while Biden’s reelection campaign brought in $43 million, according to Federal Election Commission records.”

The three candidates who most come to mind in regard to their fundraising capabilities are Rubio, Stefanik, Scott, and North Dakota Gov. Doug Burgum. All three have been pitched to Trump due to their ties to top business leaders — ties that could help with fundraising.

“Burgum could even help to self-fund Trump’s campaign, just as he did for his own Republican primary run for president,” according to CNBC. “Rubio, Stefanik and Scott also have their own fundraising networks, and could potentially deliver something even more valuable to the Trump fundraising operation: fresh donors.”

There’s also the donor factor.

“Trump is very transactional, so having a close relationship with Trump’s VP gives a donor leverage,” Short, Pence’s former chief of staff, said.

For instance, were a donor who’s close to the VP worried about trade and tariffs, they could, according to Short, say to the White House, “I want to at least be heard out before you move on trade policy.”

There is a catch, though.

“Now that Trump has served a term as president, he feels comfortable navigating Washington politics on his own,” CNBC notes. “As a result, if he is elected for the second time, he may not turn to his vice president for guidance as much as he did during his first term.”

“I do think he leaned on Pence a lot because he didn’t have that experience in D.C. And now he feels he already has that experience, and thinking he doesn’t need that active of a vice president,” Short explained.

He also won’t be looking for someone to “build bridges to businesses,” CNBC argues.

“On the contrary, he is more likely to prioritize a No. 2 who he thinks will be unshakably loyal to him. Trump has often complained that he felt betrayed on Jan. 6, 2021, when Pence refused to block certification of the 2020 election results,” the site notes.

That said, the former president isn’t expected to formally unveil his VP choice until sometime in July.

Vivek Saxena


We have no tolerance for comments containing violence, racism, profanity, vulgarity, doxing, or discourteous behavior. If a comment is spam, instead of replying to it please click the ∨ icon below and to the right of that comment. Thank you for partnering with us to maintain fruitful conversation.

Latest Articles