Oct 10, 2023 - Politics & Policy

"Not in their DNA" to accept Trump: Romney, Ryan gather 2024 candidates

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Mitt Romney (right) and Paul Ryan, then the GOP ticket, in Richmond Heights, Ohio, in 2012. Photo: Brian Snyder/Reuters

Sen. Mitt Romney (R-Utah) and former House Speaker Paul Ryan — the GOP presidential ticket in 2012 — have drawn four current presidential candidates to their two-day, closed-door summit beginning Tuesday in Park City, Utah.

Why it matters: Most of the conversation at the 11-year-old E2 Summit will be about foreign policy, tech and finance/business. But this is a powerful gathering of well-heeled, well-wired Republicans who would love to find — and fund — an alternative to former President Trump.

Zoom in: The candidates are Nikki Haley, Mike Pence, Chris Christie and North Dakota Gov. Doug Burgum.

  • Other speakers include Anthropic AI CEO Dario Amodei, Georgia Gov. Brian Kemp (R) and former attorney general Bill Barr.

What they're saying: Spencer Zwick, the summit's maestro, told Axios the attendees from the Romney/Ryan network "don't just accept that Donald Trump is the nominee."

  • "That's not in their DNA," Zwick said. "They're genuinely interested in a candidate they can get excited about and get behind."

Go deeper: Will Hurd drops out of 2024 presidential race and endorses Nikki Haley

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