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Donald Trump takes vice presidential candidate Doug Burgum with him to a massive rally in Wildwood, New Jersey.

Donald Trump takes vice presidential candidate Doug Burgum with him to a massive rally in Wildwood, New Jersey.
Donald Trump takes vice presidential candidate Doug Burgum with him to a massive rally in Wildwood, New Jersey.


There could be 50 candidates on Donald Trump's shortlist for vice president – but there was only room for one of them on his campaign plane on Saturday.

North Dakota Gov. Doug Burgum was a surprise addition to Trump's manifesto when he joined the presumptive GOP nominee on a short flight from LaGuardia Airport to Atlantic City, New Jersey.

Burgum and his wife Kathryn stayed on the plane to speak privately with the former president before he took to the tarmac and then all traveled in a motorcade to a huge oceanside gathering in nearby Wildwood.

The Post spoke to Burgum after his speech at the New Jersey rally as he watched alongside his wife, asking why he thought he was chosen to give the first speech of the evening.

If the $80,000 projection comes true, it will make Wildwood the largest rally so far in Trump's 2024 White House campaign. Aristide Economopoulos Doug Burgum and his wife Kathryn arrive in New Jersey. Diana Glebova, North Dakota Governor Doug Burgum arrives to speak before former U.S. President and 2024 Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump speaks at a campaign rally in Wildwood. AFP via Getty Images

First of all, it's so important to the country that President Trump gets re-elected. As a governor who had the opportunity to serve under Presidents Trump and Biden, I have a front-row seat to understanding the difference between what leadership means. And so if Team Trump says hello, can you come help us? we say yes.

The Post asked Burgum if he had a chance to speak to Trump on the flight.

We were doing. And of course there's President Trump, one of the things that's so remarkable about him is how hard he works. And when he’s on that plane, every minute he’s on that plane, he and everyone on the team is working,” the governor said.

An aerial view of Trump's rally on the beach in Wildwood, New Jersey. Aristide Economopoulos Burgum, rumored to be on Trump's vice presidential shortlist, and his wife Kathryn remained on the plane to speak privately with Trump before he took to the tarmac. AFP via Getty Images

“This time we had Wendys, instead of McDonalds, as you know, you were there, but everyone was working. It was great to see. Everyone on this team cares deeply about this country.

On reports that he would be considered for a Cabinet position or a vice presidential position, Burgum reversed course, saying Trump said he still had dozens of people in mind.

I kind of reject all of that. Because just a week ago, at Mar-a-Lago, when someone asked him, during his speech, he said there were over 50 people on the shortlist. The shortlist could therefore be very long.

And I think everyone who cares about this country should help campaign for President Trump and that's what the first lady and I are doing, Burgum concluded.

Supporters set up beach chairs and picnicked on the sand before Trump arrived. REUTERS Voters waited behind crowd control barriers on Saturday to be allowed into the rally site. REUTERS

Trump challenged Burgum on stage after the governor gave his speech in Wildwood, telling him to “get ready” for “something.”

Another day at the beach, Burgum told The Post with a smile after delivering his short but rousing speech to the raucous beach crowd, which Wildwood officials estimated at 80,000 to 100,000, a record for a gathering Garden State politics.

Donald Trump means strength, Joe Biden means weakness, Burgum said. If you want to make America strong again, you know what to do.

Burgum, 67, unsuccessfully fought for the 2024 GOP election before dropping out late last year — but unlike fellow presidential candidate Nikki Haley, he immediately backed Trump after having left the race.

Trump on Saturday dismissed a report that Haley had emerged as a leading contender for the role.

Nikki Haley is not being considered for the VP position, but I wish her luck! Trump wrote at Truth Social.




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