A day after he withdrew from the 2024 US presidential race, Indian-American entrepreneur Vivek Ramaswamy received an enthusiastic welcome from Donald Trump’s supporters while he endorsed his former rival and ex-US president.
The 38-year-old Republican, who quit after he failed to make a mark in the first US election test in Iowa, was greeted with chants of “VP, VP, VP” after he joined Trump on stage.
BREAKING: Trump crowd chants “VP VP VP” after Vivek gets done speaking. Trump says “he’s going to be working with us for a long time” pic.twitter.com/NV8P6hKrET
— George (@BehizyTweets) January 17, 2024
Introducing Ramaswamy as a “friend” and a “true leader”, Trump applauded his former rival. A brief handshake and a hug later, Ramaswamy delivered a passionate speech calling on supporters to back Trump in the presidential race.
“Going forward he will have my full endorsement for the presidency, and I think we’re gonna do the right thing for this country. There is not a better choice left in this race than this man right here. And that is why I am asking you to do the right thing as New Hampshire and to vote for Donald J. Trump as your next president,” an earnest Ramaswamy implored the crowd.
As the two leaders shook hands before Ramaswamy left the stage, the crowd broke into chants of “VP, VP” hinting at a possible deputy post for the biotech entrepreneur alongside Trump.
“Pretty good, isn’t it? He is a fantastic guy, and he really got something that is very special. He is going to be working with us, and he will be working with us for a long time,” the former US president said.
Ramaswamy has been one of the most staunch defendants of Trump, standing by him through his four indictments including one for attempting to overturn the 2016 US elections. Ramaswamy vowed to pardon Trump on his first day if he was elected President.
However, Trump’s newfound support of Ramaswamy may not translate into a White House job for the latter. A report in New York Post, quoting Trump’s top adviser Jason Miller, said the chance of Ramaswamy being considered as the ex-president’s running mate was very low and the voters could “probably rule him out.”
“Pretty safe to say it won’t be Vivek,” he was quoted as saying in the report.
The relationship between the two Republicans had soured days before the Iowa caucus, after Trump lashed out at Ramaswamy accusing him of “deceitful campaign tricks” as the latter’s campaign handed out t-shirts that said “Save Trump, Vote Vivek”.
“Very sly, but a vote for Vivek is a vote for the ‘other side’ – don’t get duped by this. Vote for ‘TRUMP, don’t waste your vote! Vivek is not MAGA,” the 77-year-old said in a post on social media platform Truth Social.