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Republicans Prepare the Trump Loyalty Oath

Donald Trump speaks to the media while attending his trial in New York State Supreme Court on December 7, 2023 in New York City.
For the Trump team, the demand for a loyalty oath is not just about racking up enough support to finally vanquish his flagging competitors; it’s also about sending a message to the donor class currently infatuated with Haley as the Never Trumper du jour. Photo: David Dee Delgado/Getty Images
Tara Palmeri
December 7, 2023

After months of semi-campaigning, inert debates, Jeff Roe drama, and a woeful lack of enthusiasm, it’s finally approaching decision time in the G.O.P. Donald Trump is polling at 59 percent—nearly four times both Nikki Haley (15 percent) and Ron DeSantis (14 percent), according to a new Wall Street Journal poll. And Republican senators, members, operatives, and bundlers are now being aggressively pushed to endorse Trump not only by his campaign, but also party leaders—a loyalty oath intended to effectively conclude this semi-primary season. 

According to multiple sources in the Senate and on the Trump team, National Republican Senatorial Committee chair Steve Daines has been “aggressively lobbying” fellow senators to make their Trump endorsement now, before it’s too late and doesn’t matter. For the Trump team, the demand for a loyalty oath is not just about racking up enough support to finally vanquish his flagging competitors; it’s also about sending a message to the donor class currently infatuated with Haley as the Never Trumper du jour. “Chairman Daines is a strong supporter of President Trump and firmly believes he will be the nominee,” said N.R.S.C. communications director Mike Berg, who declined to comment further on the record.