Sources close to the White House said some senior officials inside the White House and the campaign are beginning to quietly back away from Trump, in acts of self-preservation, as the returns in Pennsylvania and Georgia indicate the President will not win reelection.
“It’s over,” one key adviser to the administration said of the race. The adviser went on to say there are concerns about what Trump will do, beyond the question of whether he will concede the race.
“God. Who knows,” the adviser said when asked what Trump might do next, conceding there were multiple officials in the campaign and the White House who were shaking their heads after Trump’s litany of false statements Thursday evening in the White House briefing room.
Some in the campaign, the adviser said, questioned the Trump team’s decision to dispatch the likes of Rudy Giuliani and Trump’s sons to make unfounded allegations of voter fraud, arguing that likely diminished the president’s claims of wrongdoing. The adviser said Trump is well within his rights to contest the election results but is going about it in exactly the wrong way.
A separate adviser to the campaign described Trump as increasingly isolated in his claims of a stolen election. “He is mostly alone here,” the adviser said of Trump’s claims of voter fraud.
The sources noted, however, there are still some aides and allies around the president telling him what he wants to hear. That will keep the drama going, the sources added.
One pressure point for Trump is that some in the administration are already beginning to look beyond the 2020 race and toward 2024. One adviser said some inside the administration and the GOP are starting to measure their actions based on ambitions for the next campaign cycle.