2021: The year the 2024 presidential race ignited

Former President Trump greets supporters during his Save America rally in Perry, Georgia, on Sept. 25, 2021. 

It didn’t take long for former President Trump to begin publicly sending signals about 2024.

Just five weeks removed from the White House, and with his role as the kingmaker of the GOP briefly diminished in the immediate aftermath of the Jan. 6 storming of the U.S. Capitol by right-wing extremists aiming to disrupt congressional certification of now President Biden’s Electoral College victory over Trump, the former president was back in the spotlight.

“With your help, we will take back the House, we will win the Senate,” Trump predicted as he gave the closing address at the Conservative Political Action Conference in Orlando, Florida, in a speech delivered two weeks after he was acquitted in a Senate impeachment trial on the charge of inciting the deadly attack on the Capitol.

“And then a Republican president will make a triumphant return to the White House. And I wonder who that will be. I wonder who that will be. Who? Who? Who will that be? I wonder,” the former president teased, the first of what would be numerous flirtations this year of launching a 2024 campaign to try and win back the White House.