Republican presidential primary candidate Vivek Ramaswamy sparked rumors that he might soon drop out of the race amid reports that he had suspended spending on television advertisements.
Although he subsequently responded that the move was part of a long-term strategy, that did not prevent front-runner Donald Trump from weighing in with his belief that Ramaswamy will end up giving him a full-throated endorsement.
“He will, I am sure, Endorse me,” Trump wrote in a social media post. “But Vivek is a good man, and is not done yet!”
Ramaswamy signed a pledge earlier this year to support whichever candidate secured the 2024 GOP nomination, as did all candidates on stage for the Republican National Committee’s debates. Of course, Trump was notably absent from the debates and did not sign the pledge.
“Why would I sign it?” he asked in August. “I can name three or four people that I wouldn’t support for president. So right there, there’s a problem.”
At that time, however, he did name Ramaswamy as a candidate who had “been very nice” to him.
The entrepreneur addressed reports about his advertising strategy in a social media post, calling TV ad spending an “idiotic” strategy that takes advantage of “low IQ” candidates. He indicated that his campaign had opted for a different path toward the GOP nomination and teased a “big surprise” coming on Jan. 15 — the date of the Iowa caucuses.
Presidential TV ad spending is idiotic, low-ROI & a trick that political consultants use to bamboozle candidates who suffer from low IQ.
We’re doing it differently. Spending $$ in a way that follows data…apparently a crazy idea in US politics.
Big surprise coming on Jan 15. 🇺🇸 https://t.co/i2X7Q5d2T9
— Vivek Ramaswamy (@VivekGRamaswamy) December 27, 2023
Ramaswamy campaign spokesperson Tricia McLaughlin indicated that the candidate will still be purchasing limited advertising spots to be distributed by digital TV providers. She went on to offer additional details about the campaign’s broader strategy.
“We are focused on bringing out the voters we’ve identified,” she said, noting that the “best way to reach them is using addressable advertising, mail, text, live calls, and doors to communicate with our voters on Vivek’s vision for America, making their plan to caucus and turning them out.”
McLaughlin acknowledged that “this isn’t what most campaigns look like,” but asserted that it has been “intentionally structured this way so that we have the ability to be nimble and hyper-targeted in our ad spending.”