Vivek Ramaswamy, an Indian-American 2024 US presidential aspirant, has hinted that he may run on a joint ticket with former president Donald Trump as his running mate if he does not win the Republican nomination, according to a media report.
The remarks by Ramaswamy came days after the 38-year-old multimillionaire biotech entrepreneur-turned-politician said he was “not interested” in any job other than president.
Ramaswamy said he believed he could only “reunite this country” as president, but did not rule out running with 77-year-old Trump as vice president if the former president and frontrunner wins the nomination for a third time.
Asked on Britain's GB News whether he would be “happy to be (Trump’s) VP”, Ramaswamy replied: “See, this isn’t about me. If this were about me, sure. That’s a fine position for someone to have at my age.
“This is about reviving our country and I can only reunite this country if I’m doing it from the White House as the leader and the face of our movement.” He added that he had “fresh legs” and was “almost half [Trump’s] age”, but would ask him to serve as “my most valued adviser” in the White House.
Rumours of a joint ticket between the two men in the 2024 race were fanned by the Trump campaign’s praise for Ramaswamy after the first Republican primary debate on Wednesday, in which he emerged as a breakout star.
A self-declared “outsider” who has no experience as an elected official has pledged to pardon Trump for any federal convictions on “day one” of his presidency and continue his legacy in the White House with an “America First 2.0” agenda, The Telegraph newspaper said.
In previous interviews, Ramaswamy had denied becoming the former president’s running mate, insisting that he could only change the country if he won the top job.
“I’m not interested in a different position in the government. Frankly, I’d drive change through the private sector sooner than becoming number two or three in the federal government," he told Fox News on Saturday.
His popularity rating and online fundraising have surged after his impressive performance at the first Republican presidential primary debate on Wednesday.
The first poll that came out after the debate said that 28 per cent of the 504 respondents said Ramaswamy performed the best. He was followed by Florida Governor Ron DeSantis with 27 per cent, and Pence (13 per cent). Indian-American Nikki Haley received the vote of seven per cent.
According to Fox News, Ramaswamy was the most Google-searched Republican candidate after the debate. He was followed by fellow Indian-American Haley.
Both the Indian-Americans were standing next to each other on the debate stage.
Politico, a Washington metropolitan area-based politics-focused newspaper company, said that Ramaswamy, the brash and uber-wealthy entrepreneur, got under the skin of his rivals and praised Trump, calling him “the best president of the 21st century.” Though Ramaswamy has repeatedly denied he’s in the race just to be Trump’s running mate, that hasn’t quelled speculation. Many of the qualities that might make him unserious to some, seem to only burnish his bona fides to others and make him seem like a breath of fresh air, it said.
Rina Shah, a conservative political consultant and delegate to the Republican National Convention during the 2016 cycle, Ramaswamy is attempting “to be as Trump as Trump,” which will naturally curry favour with the former president as he searches for a running mate.
Another Republican strategist and former Trump White House advisor, Ja’Ron Smith, said “big possibility” when asked whether Ramaswamy’s showing on Wednesday put him in the running for veepstakes.
Ramaswamy’s performance in Milwaukee on Wednesday drew the admiration of Donald Trump Jr, the former president's eldest child.
“I thought he had a standout performance. I mean, I think that did what Ron DeSantis needed to do," he said.
Trump Junior himself posted a clip of Ramaswamy arguing he was “the best president of the 21st century”, commenting: “This answer gave Vivek Ramaswamy a big win in the debate because of a thing called truth," he said.
Ramaswamy, if tapped as Vice President and later elected, would be the second youngest ever to serve in the role, behind John Breckinridge who served as President James Buchanan’s second in command when he was just 36.
Breckinridge served from 1857 to 1861.
Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by The Telegraph Online staff and has been published from a syndicated feed.