2024 Is Donald Trump's Election to Lose, Says Lindsey Graham

Senator Lindsey Graham (R-SC) has said that the next presidential election is former President Donald Trump's to lose and he will have the Republican nomination if he wants it.

Graham spoke to Fox News host Pete Hegseth on Wednesday about the 2024 election and argued that Trump could return to the White House if he runs a "disciplined campaign."

Polls have consistently shown that Trump remains the favorite candidate for the party's nomination among GOP voters while some surveys suggest Trump would defeat President Joe Biden in a hypothetical rematch.

Graham told Hegseth: "Unless there's something coming out of left field I don't see coming, it's his nomination if he wants it."

"The Republican base appreciated him," Graham said. "We don't appreciate all of the things he does sometimes, but from a policy point of view he was the most successful president from a conservative's point of view since Ronald Reagan."

Reagan served as president from 1981 to 1989 and is an icon for conservatives. Potential GOP presidential candidates are routinely compared to Reagan, who passed away in 2004.

"It is his nomination if he wants it," Graham stressed. "And he will be in the White House in 2024 if he runs a disciplined campaign. And what he should do, in my humble opinion, is remind people how he secured the border, how he took the fight to ISIS, destroyed the caliphate, how we were so much better off internationally—the Iran deal is a nightmare in the making for Israel—regained energy independence."

"So I think 2024 is President Trump's election to lose, quite frankly. 2022 is a blowout year for the Republicans in the House and the Senate if we'll talk about policy," he said.

Earlier in the interview, Hegseth asked Graham about the 2022 midterm elections and whether Republicans could perform as well as they had in 1994 when they took the House of Representatives in a famous victory.

Graham cited Republicans' 1994 "Contract with America" and suggested that his party should run an "America first" agenda. He said his party colleagues "need to be for things" such as securing the border and energy independence.

The senator said if Republicans run an agenda like that led by Trump "we clean their clock."

"In 1994, we won 73 seats to take over the Congress—the House—for the first time in 40 years. If we play our cards right, we will exceed that," Graham said.

Republicans are hoping to take back the House of Representatives and the Senate from the Democrats in 2022 and controlling one or both chambers would allow them to stymie Biden's agenda. The president's party generally does poorly in midterm elections.

A Redfield & Wilton Strategies poll conducted on December 18 found that Trump would defeat Biden in theoretical 2024 matchup, with the former president winning 44 percent support to Biden's 38 percent.

UPDATE 12/30/21 9:50 a.m. ET: This article was updated to include a new picture.

Donald Trump Points at the Media
Former President Donald Trump addresses a member of the media after a border security briefing on June 30, 2021 in Weslaco, Texas. Senator Lindsey Graham has said Trump can win the 2024 Republican nomination if he wants it. Brandon Bell/Getty Images