Still, Trump will be 78 by the time of the next election. He also faces financial pressures, with large debts coming due in the next few years. He will continue to command headlines but there are solid reasons why he may not run for the presidency again.
There is speculative chatter that one of Trump’s children, perhaps his elder daughter Ivanka, could enter the political arena. But here are some other front-line contenders for the GOP nomination in 2024.
Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas)
Sen. Josh Hawley (R-Mo.)
Hawley has already declared that he would support Trump in 2024 if the president runs again.
If Trump takes a pass, however, many in the GOP see Hawley as well-placed to take his populist mantle.
Hawley favored a more expansive relief program for workers during the COVID-19 pandemic. He is broadly supportive of Trump’s protectionist trade policies. He has also taken repeated shots at tech corporations, which in his view wield excessive power.
Kevin McDermott, a columnist with the The St Louis Post-Dispatch, recently complained that “no one does populist fake outrage like this self-styled enemy of ‘the elite’ who holds degrees from Stanford and Yale.”
Still, if the GOP is looking for a message of Trump-like populism carried by a more affable messenger, the party could well turn to Hawley.
Vice President Pence
Pence would likely find himself vying with rivals such as Cruz for the votes of social conservatives. Other senior members of the Trump administration may also seek the nomination — Haley and Secretary of State Mike Pompeo are both widely assumed to be interested.
Sen. Tom Cotton (R-Ark.)
His views on race have stoked controversy, however. A furor followed the publication of a New York Times op-ed he wrote in June, amid protests over the killing of George Floyd, headlined “Send in the Troops.” In it, Cotton called for “an overwhelming show of force to disperse, detain and ultimately deter lawbreakers.”
As with Cruz, there are real questions over Cotton’s likability beyond the conservative base.
Other potential candidates: Texas Gov. Greg Abbott, Fox News host Tucker Carlson, former New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis, Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, Sen. Marco Rubio (Fla.), Sen. Rick Scott (Fla.), Ivanka Trump.
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