Lara Trump freezes Republican US Senate field

Photo of Lara Trump courtesy of Donald Trump 2020 campaign.

RALEIGH — For Republicans, a final decision by Lara Trump will be key to setting up the primary field for the open 2022 U.S Senate seat being vacated by Richard Burr.

Former President Donald Trump made news last week at an event his daughter-in-law was hosting at his Mar-a-Lago resort.

The British newspaper Daily Mail reported that Trump told the crowd she was running for the Senate.

“I want to thank Lara, who’s been so incredible. I don’t know, you’re running for the Senate. I hear she’s going to run for the Senate!” Trump stated as the crowd erupted into cheers.

The report made clear that no formal decision or paperwork has been filed, but the speculation continues around her entry into the field.

Mrs. Trump would need to establish residency in the state to become eligible to run. A native of New Hanover County and a N.C. State University graduate, Trump has lived in New York for nine years, including the past six since her marriage to Eric Trump, an executive vice president with the Trump Organization.

South Carolina Sen. Lindsey Graham fueled speculation during a Fox News Sunday appearance in which he suggested that Burr’s vote for President Trump’s impeachment made her “the almost certain nominee.”

“The biggest winner of this whole impeachment trial, I think, is Lara Trump. My dear friend Richard Burr, who I like and I’ve been friends to a long time, just made Lara Trump almost the certain nominee for the Senate seat in North Carolina to replace him if she runs. And I certainly would be behind her, because I think she represents the future of the Republican Party,” he said on the show on Feb. 14.