Former President Donald Trump told Fox News Monday he is "very seriously" considering running for president in 2024 and that Republicans in Congress should copy his agenda – including his pro-life stance – "if they want to win."
Trump also touted Operation Warp Speed, criticized the FDA for pausing the Johnson & Johnson vaccine, and said he would record a pro-vaccine commercial if asked.
Trump made the comments during an interview with Sean Hannity.
"Are you running again in 2024?" Hannity asked. "What are the odds?"
"First off, it is a long time," Trump answered. "... I am looking at it very seriously – beyond seriously. From a legal standpoint, I don't want to really talk about it yet."
Republican candidates for Congress, he said, must run on his Make America Great Again (MAGA) agenda "if they want to win."
"We're going to take back the House in 22," Trump said. "We have a real chance."
Hannity summed up the MAGA agenda, which he said includes "more liberty, more freedom, belief in the Constitution, lower taxes, less bureaucracy, constitutionalists on the bench," as well as "secure borders, legal immigration, energy independence."
Trump added: "pro-life, Second Amendment."
The former president also touted Operation Warp Speed, a partnership between the federal government and the private sector to develop a vaccine against COVID-19 by the end of 2020.
"I was told by Dr. [Anthony] Fauci, and by many people, the quickest you're gonna have a vaccine is three years, and it could be five years, and it could be longer than that. And you could also not have it at all. And then I got involved," Trump said. "I said, 'That's ridiculous.' And I got involved with the FDA. … We're saving 10s of millions of people with a vaccine. So I pushed them. They had all these statutory periods. … I backed the companies up financially."
As of this week, more than 50 percent of adults in the U.S. have had at least one dose of the vaccine.
Trump criticized the FDA for pausing the Johnson and Johnson vaccine due to six cases of blood clots among women ages 18 to 48.
"That's the worst thing you could have done from a public relations standpoint," Trump said, adding it was "six people" out of 6.8 million people who had received the vaccine. He said he heard that "women's birth control" causes "far more" blood clots.
Referencing the FDA, he said, "They all want me to do a commercial because a lot of our people don't want to take vaccine. … And they think that's very important, and I'd certainly do it."
Trump received the vaccine in January.
"You encourage people to" take the vaccine, Hannity said.
"I encourage them to take it," Trump said. "I do."
Asked what he misses about not being president, Trump said, "I miss the most helping people – because I can directly help people. That's why I did it."
Photo courtesy: ©Getty Images/Chip Somodevilla/Staff
Michael Foust has covered the intersection of faith and news for 20 years. His stories have appeared in Baptist Press, Christianity Today, The Christian Post, the Leaf-Chronicle, the Toronto Star and the Knoxville News-Sentinel.