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Vivek Ramaswamy’s Trump-Style Politics Irritates Rivals, But He Emerges Victorious

Former U.S. Ambassador to the U.N. Nikki Haley referred to Vivek Ramaswamy as “scum,” while former New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie and former Vice President Mike Pence criticized him as Trump’s supporter. In contrast, former President Donald Trump has praised Mr. Ramaswamy as a “very, very, very intelligent person” and a potential “very good” running mate.
The wide range of opinions reflects how Mr. Ramaswamy has been the most unpredictable figure in the 2024 GOP presidential race. He has a talent for getting under the skin of his opponents, who portray him as deceitful.
Simultaneously, the 38-year-old’s non-traditional approach, bold confidence, and outspoken admiration for Mr. Trump have made him a favorite among the MAGA movement, leading some to suggest that he could represent the party’s future.
Mike Biundo, senior adviser to the Ramaswamy campaign, attributes his boss’ enduring popularity to his strong alignment with the party’s base.
“He speaks his mind with genuine conviction, even when it’s a tough conversation to have. These elements, combined with ample resources, extensive groundwork, and time, have positioned him to surprise the experts in both Iowa and New Hampshire,” said Mr. Biundo.
Critics argue that the more people get to know Mr. Ramaswamy, the less they tend to like him. A recent Des Moines Register poll showed that his unfavorable ratings have risen to 37% from 20% in August, and he remains in single digits in the early primary states. However, Mr. Ramaswamy has outlasted more experienced and well-known Republican rivals, including Mr. Pence and Sen. Tim Scott of South Carolina. There is a possibility that Mr. Ramaswamy is one of the three remaining non-Trump contenders to qualify for the fourth GOP presidential debate next month in Alabama.
Gov. Ron DeSantis of Florida and Ms. Haley are expected to participate in the debate, while Mr. Christie claims to have met the donor threshold but still needs to gain more support in polls.
Mr. Ramaswamy has inserted himself into the spotlight by initiating confrontations with his opponents during debates, and in the most recent debate, inviting RNC Chair Ronna McDaniel to step down.
He has made promises such as pledging to pardon Mr. Trump if he is convicted of crimes and pledging to reduce the federal workforce by 75%. Additionally, he vowed to shut down several federal government agencies, including the FBI, Department of Education, and the Nuclear Regulatory Commission.
While parts of his message and actions may not sit well with everyone, Mr. Ramaswamy’s unorthodox approach has helped him to stand out and continue his campaign successfully.

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