Jockeying for 2024 plays out on Trump's turf: The Note

The TAKE with Rick Klein

There’s a familiar shadow looming over the shadow campaign.

So long as we’re searching for metaphors, a wall that might yet be completed will be the focus of an unusual border tour on Wednesday. That’s where a former president is joining a potential one who is promising to finish his guest’s signature promise.

Of course, Texas Gov. Greg Abbott is only the latest potential GOP presidential candidate to see value in spiritual if not physical proximity to former President Donald Trump.

PHOTO: Former President Donald Trump enters a campaign rally in Wellington, Ohio, June 26, 2021.

South Dakota Gov. Kristi Noem on Tuesday announced plans to dispatch 50 National Guard troops to the border. That matches the number of police officers Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis promised to send to the border last week.

DeSantis has seemed to be competing with Abbott in checking conservative legislative boxes this year, including on voting-rights restrictions. Those moves were inspired at least in part by the lies Trump continues to tell about the last election — and few Republicans with national aspirations are calling him out.

While former Vice President Mike Pence has made clear of late he does not regret his actions on Jan. 6, he added last week that Democrats and the news media are trying “to use one tragic day to discredit the aspirations of millions of Americans.” Even former UN Ambassador Nikki Haley — who broke publicly with Trump after Jan. 6 — has softened her critiques and recently said she will not run in 2024 if Trump chooses to give it another go.

The loyalty to Trump goes beyond rhetorical deference to the man who remains a singular galvanizing figure in the Republican Party. There are policy implications — on voting rights, race relations, education, transgender rights and, with resources going to the border, public safety — with much of the maneuvering.

Whether or not Trump runs again, Trumpism is here to stay — through 2022 and 2024, if not beyond.

The RUNDOWN with Quinn Scanlan

President Joe Biden focused on selling the contents of his dual infrastructure plans to the American people Tuesday rather than on the sausage-making that is the legislative process.

“This bipartisan breakthrough is a great deal for the American people, not just for folks in cities, not just for red states, blue states but for everyone,” Biden said in Wisconsin. “Let me be clear. There’s much more to do. … I’m going to continue to make the case, there are critical investments that are still needed, including those in my family plan.”

PHOTO: President Joe Biden speaks about infrastructure spending at the La Crosse Municipal Transit Authority, June 29, 2021, in La Crosse, Wis.

But as much as the White House wants the focus to be less on the process, the reality is how these packages become law matters — and progressives continue to call on Biden and other Democrats to go big and push for priorities that Republicans would likely never support.

Sources told ABC News congressional correspondent Rachel Scott that progressive lawmakers stood firm in a meeting Tuesday with White House counselor Steve Ricchetti, reiterating that both infrastructure bills need to be passed in tandem.

The Nevada Democratic Party’s new chairwoman, who won with the backing of the local Democratic Socialists of America chapter, called on Democrats “to remember that infrastructure is not and cannot be separated from environmental issues or people’s livelihoods.”

“Democrats have a mandate from the American people and should not let a façade of bipartisanship get in the way of the urgency that the situation demands,” she said in a statement.

Activists from the Sunrise Movement, a youth-oriented group working to combat climate change, marched to Sen. Dianne Feinstein’s home in Washington Tuesday to urge her to support “bold and ambitious climate legislation.” That followed over a dozen activists getting arrested Monday for blockading the White House, according to the group, and they plan to do another sit-in Wednesday at White House to keep up the pressure.

The TIP with Oren Oppenheim

The aftermath of the New York City Democratic mayoral primary has become mired in uncertainty, with the city’s Board of Elections saying it accidentally counted test ballots along with the in-person votes when releasing unofficial results.

In a statement posted on Twitter late Tuesday night, the Board said it would remove the over 130,000 test ballots and recalculate the preliminary ranked choice voting results.

PHOTO: Democratic mayoral candidate Maya Wiley, center, as she greet voters during a campaign stop in the West Village neighborhood of New York City, June 22, 2021.

This happened after preliminary election results released on Tuesday showed Brooklyn Borough President Eric Adams maintaining his lead, with Maya Wiley, the former counsel to Mayor Bill de Blasio, in second place.

Wiley was less than 100,000 votes behind Adams in the first round, and there are over 100,000 absentee ballots yet to be counted.

But Adams challenged the results, saying on Tuesday afternoon, “The vote total just released by the Board of Elections is 100,000-plus more than the total announced on election night, raising serious questions.”

The board then removed the unofficial results from their website Tuesday night, replacing them with a message stating, “Unofficial Rank Choice Results Starting on June 30.”

So, while the initial results seemed to offer some hope to the progressives who have consolidated around Wiley, the race is shaping up to have a messy aftermath even before a winner is declared.


ABC News’ “Start Here” podcast. Wednesday morning’s episode features a conversation with Rep. John Curtis, R-Utah, about the creation of his climate-focused Republican caucus as we continue to see dangerous heat waves across the country. ABC News’ Anne Flaherty explains why Los Angeles County is recommending indoor masks regardless of vaccination status. And Lester Black, from our partners at FiveThirtyEight, tells us how THC testing could throw a wrench in the regulation of the growing cannabis industry.


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The Note is a daily ABC News feature that highlights the key political moments of the day ahead. Please check back tomorrow for the latest.

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