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Insiders predict Rust Belt Republican, possible Trump VP pick could flip Biden votes in these key swing states

Editor’s note: This is Profile Series A list of potential vice presidential candidates for Republican candidate Donald Trump in the 2024 presidential election.

Who Donald Trump’s The debate over who will be his vice presidential pick in November is heating up, with the former president telling Fox News last week that he has “a pretty good idea” about who he will choose.

That person’s identity remains a mystery, but several candidates were asked in recent days to submit paperwork to the Trump campaign as part of the vetting process, including Sen. J.D. Vance, a firebrand from Ohio who some see as potentially key to flipping working-class Democrats in several key battleground states.

“J.D. Vance is a regular at Donald Trump’s campaign rallies and is extremely popular among Trump supporters,” a top Republican strategist told Fox News Digital, noting that Vance frequently accompanies Trump on and off the campaign trail.

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From left to right: Ohio Senator J.D. Vance, Florida Senator Marco Rubio, Arkansas Governor Sarah Sanders, and North Dakota Governor Doug Burgum. (Getty Images)

“He’s going to be a great help throughout the Rust Belt and he’s going to help garner the working-class Democratic vote outside of Ohio. He’s really going to be valuable everywhere, but especially in states like Pennsylvania, Michigan and Wisconsin.”

All three of these states were won by Trump in 2016 when they were part of Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton’s so-called “blue wall,” but flipped to President Biden in 2020.

The three are once again central to the presidential race and could be a deciding factor in who wins this year’s election. Vance’s blue-collar upbringing, detailed in his best-selling 2016 autobiography, “Hillbilly Elegy,” will appeal to many voters in these states in particular, just as it did to Trump during his first presidential run, another aide argued.

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J.D. Vance

Republican Senator J.D. Vance of Ohio speaks at a town hall event with former 2024 Republican presidential candidate, President Trump, at Dream City Church in Phoenix, Arizona, on June 6, 2024. (Jim Watson/AFP via Getty Images)

“[Vance] “He handles hostile media interviews with the poise and precision of a Yale Law School graduate, while also sharing a genuine connection with blue-collar voters in key states like Michigan, Wisconsin and Pennsylvania, so it’s easy to see why he’s on Trump’s shortlist,” said Matt Wolking, a Republican strategist who served as deputy communications director for Trump’s presidential campaign. 2020 Presidential Election.

“A combat veteran and good friend of Donald Trump Jr., Vance is a fresh face in the populist, non-interventionist, pro-union wing of the new Republican Party,” Wolking added, referring to Vance’s service in the Marines and deployment to Iraq.

Wolking pointed to potential downsides to Vance’s selection, including the fact that he would be the youngest vice president in 70 years and that, although he will be elected to the Senate in 2022, he had only served in elected office for 18 months as of June.

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J.D. Vance

Republican Sen. J.D. Vance of Ohio speaks to reporters outside Manhattan Criminal Court on May 13, 2024, in New York. (Victor J. Blue/Bloomberg via Getty Images)

“He’s only had one general election experience, in a state that Trump won by 8 points,” he added.

Another Republican strategist with presidential campaign experience told Fox that Trump has been working hard to win over the business community, and Vance’s “anti-big business leanings will be deeply irritating to some potential donors.”

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Other candidates said to be potential Republicans joining Trump on the ballot include House Republican Conference Chair Elise Stefanik, Arkansas Governor Sarah Sanders, Virginia Governor Glenn Youngkin, North Dakota Governor Doug Burgum, South Dakota Governor Kristi Noem, Florida Senator Marco Rubio and South Carolina Senator Tim Scott.

Trump has suggested he will likely wait until July. Republican National Convention He will announce his selection in Milwaukee.

Get the latest 2024 campaign updates, exclusive interviews and more on Fox News Digital’s Election Hub.