Trump 'Does Want to Run Again,' Says Former Acting Intelligence Chief Richard Grenell

President Donald Trump on numerous occasions told his former acting director of U.S. National Intelligence he wants to run again in 2024, prompting debate on whether he'd run as a Republican or a separate "Patriot Party" candidate.

Trump's former intelligence chief Richard Grenell told Newsmax TV Saturday that the president "personally, a number of times, [said] he does want to run again" for the White House. Grenell reiterated that he hopes Trump will campaign in 2024 as a member of the GOP given that he is currently "the head of the Republican Party." Another former Trump administration figure on the same news segment, Sebastian Gorka, mocked HBO host Bill Maher and some Democrats for recently equating Trump's "patriot party" movement to the rise of Germany's Nazi Party during Adolf Hitler's political ascent.

Grenell highlighted that not only did the president assure he and other close aides about his plans to run in 2024, but that Trump is by far the most popular politician in the entire GOP. A roundup of year-ending 2020 polls and surveys showed that Trump holds the support of about 9 in 10—or in some cases even higher percentages—of self-identified Republicans. An increasingly outspoken sect of Trump supporters and GOP lawmakers have accused party elites of "abandoning" the president during his unfounded challenges to President Joe Biden's election win.

"Look, it's like a sports team, your party is not always perfect and you try to get it better. If you don't like an aspect of something that's going on then you work to make it better, but you don't abandon it. I believe that the Republican Party is the best place, Donald Trump is the head of the Republican Party still, let's make no mistake about that," Grenell said Saturday, noting "we've got a long ways to go" before 2024.

"Clearly, Donald Trump is a Republican and should run again as a Republican," Grenell added, urging conservatives and Trump supporters not to split off from the GOP. He and the Newsmax hosts said they believe there is a Republican Party divide among elected office holders and donor "power brokers," but not among the voters.

Grenell briefly praised the current head of the Republican National Committee, Ronna McDaniel, for her fundraising ability. But without mentioning Trump, Grenell complained "I don't know why she doesn't get enough credit" in the Trump era. The former acting intelligence chief said he has attended every Republican convention since 1992.

During the same segment, Gorka ridiculed Democrats and Trump critics for comparing his "patriot party" voter base to Adolf Hitler's brownshirts in 1920s-30s Germany. "You have to laugh: When did the word 'patriots' become controversial?"

On Friday, Trump gave his first remarks since leaving the White House, saying of his future plans, "We'll do something, but not just yet."

Newsweek reached out to the U.S. intelligence community for reaction to Grenell's remarks Sunday afternoon.

richard grenell trump run 2024
Former President Donald Trump on numerous occasions told Richard Grenell, his former acting Director of U.S. National Intelligence, that he wants to run again in 2024, prompting debate on whether he'd run as a Republican or a separate "Patriot Party" candidate. Screenshot: Newsmax TV | YouTube