WASHINGTON — Sen. Mike Rounds, R-S.D., said he’s unsure whether former President Donald Trump is capable of beating President Joe Biden in a general election matchup, adding that the former president’s electability is one of his concerns heading into 2024.
When asked by CNN’s Dana Bash whether he thinks Trump, the current Republican frontrunner, could beat Biden in 2024, Rounds said “We don’t know.”
“That’s one of the concerns that a lot of people have got, me as well,” Round said Sunday on CNN’s “State of the Union.” “That’s the reason why I think if we bring in a uniter rather than a divider, I think we’ve got a better shot at doing what’s right for this country long term, and that’s what I want.”
Rounds also denounced Trump’s actions on Jan. 6, 2021, when a mob of the former president’s supporters attacked the Capitol in an effort to block the certification of the 2020 presidential election after his repeated false claims of election fraud in the race.
“I was there on January 6. I saw what happened. I’m not happy about what happened. I was not happy with his performance on that particular day,” Rounds said.
Trump is currently facing four separate criminal cases over allegedly falsifying business records to make hush money payments, mishandling classified documents after he left the White House and attempting to overturn the 2020 election. The former president could be the Republican Party’s nominee while also being a convicted felon.
In such an outcome, Rounds declined to say whether he would support Trump as the nominee and said he is “hoping truly that we get to the point where I don’t have to make that type of a decision.”
Rounds reiterated his support for his colleague, Sen. Tim Scott’s, R-S.C., presidential bid. Rounds was the first Republican senator to support Scott’s campaign and called Scott on Sunday “the guy that I think can unite this country.”
“He’s not well known right now, so he’s not polling as high as some of the other folks are, but we need to bring this country together. Tim Scott’s the guy that can do it,” Rounds said.
In an average of polls from Real Clear Politics on the crowded Republican field, Scott still trails candidates such as Trump and Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis, as well as his fellow South Carolinian, former Gov. Nikki Haley.
This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: GOP senator unsure if Donald Trump can beat Joe Biden in 2024 election