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Former Republican Arkansas Gov. Asa Hutchinson is formally jumping into the race for the White House.
During an announcement on Wednesday in his hometown of Bentonville, Arkansas, Hutchinson announced that he would be joining the growing field of contenders taking on former President Donald Trump in the battle for the 2024 GOP nomination.
“Today, I am announcing that I am a candidate for president of the United States,” Hutchinson told supporters. “In this campaign for president, I stand alone in terms of my experience, my record, and leadership. From Congress to the DEA to Homeland Security, I have served our country in times of crisis. As governor of Arkansas, we cut taxes and created record surpluses. We increased pay for teachers. We reduced regulations; recruited industry and the private sector grew by over 100,000 jobs. My mettle has been tested.”
“In this campaign for president, I stand alone in terms of my experience, record, and leadership,” Hutchinson said. “From Congress to DEA to Homeland Security, I have served our country in times of crisis. As governor of Arkansas, we cut taxes and created record surpluses.”
“We have learned that in times of turmoil, uncertainty, and division, America has always benefited from leaders who challenge us and give us hope,” Hutchinson continued. “I am confident that America is ready to seek new frontiers; and that we are ready to channel the restless waves of our democracy into more freedom and more prosperity for those who follow after us.”
🚨BREAKING: Former Arkansas GOP Asa Hutchinson announces he’s running for presidentpic.twitter.com/DHuh0vLAfc
— Patriot Alerts (@alerts___) April 26, 2023
Hutchinson left office in Arkansas in January due to term limits and was succeeded by Gov. Sarah Huckabee Sanders.
Hutchinson is a vocal GOP critic of Trump and has attacked the former president numerous times.
Last month, Hutchinson said Trump should drop out of the 2024 race since he was indicted by Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg.
ABC News host Jon Karl asked: “You suggested recently that if Trump were to get indicted that he should drop out of the race. Do you believe that now that he’s been indicted, should he drop out?”
“Well, I do. And for a couple of reasons. I mean, first of all, the office is more important than any individual person. And so for the sake of the office of the presidency, I do think that’s too much of a sideshow and distraction, and he needs to be able to concentrate on his due process, and there is a presumption of innocence,” Hutchinson said.
EXCLUSIVE: Former GOP Gov. Asa Hutchinson announces during an interview with @JonKarl that he will be running for president.
— This Week (@ThisWeekABC) April 2, 2023
Last week, Trump’s team shared some interesting insight into his potential running mate.
Trump insiders spoke to the Daily Caller and said the 45th president is likely to pick a vice presidential candidate that is “loyal,” has “charisma,” and is “ideologically aligned” with him.
“No candidates have publicly announced their intent to be Trump’s VP, but the former president has indicated that ‘a lot of people’ are ‘auditioning’ behind the scenes. Trump insiders told the Caller that although there haven’t been any formal discussions to narrow down the pool, there are a set of characteristics that will likely be considered,” the Daily Caller reported.
“We do know one thing about Trump, is that he puts a lot of weight on how well you present yourself. That really matters to him, so I suspect that will matter for his VP choice,” a GOP consultant close to Trump told the Caller, adding that the person needs to be “TV ready.”
“Loyalty. That’s the necessary characteristic of anyone who wants to be VP. President Trump and the movement was dragged down by disloyalty in the White House,” a source close to Trump said.
While the insiders did not name anyone specifically in the interview, they did at least share some insight into the type of person he would be interested in.
A recent Politico report stated that an unnamed Trump adviser said the 45th president is likely to choose a running mate “from three general lanes of candidates: women, conservatives of color, or a trusted adviser.”
“Once you get past those two issues — loyalty and Trump going more with his gut — Trump has a lot of leeway in who he would pick,” said Tony Fabrizio, Trump’s lead pollster in 2016 and 2020.
“He’s not necessarily looking to balance the ticket geographically, but what he can do is pick to balance gender, race, ethnicity — a lot of different lanes there. It could be everything from a Tim Scott in South Carolina to an Asian American in California or somebody Hispanic in Texas. There are so many choices and paths. And there’s lots of time to go,” he added.
According to a report from the Washington Examiner, these four Republican women could be high on Trump’s shortlist:
South Dakota Gov. Kristi Noem
New York Rep. Elise Stefanik
Arkansas Gov. Sarah Huckabee Sanders
Arizona Republican Kari Lake
One name not mentioned in the Washinton Examiner report is Republican Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene of Georgia. Her name has been floated in the media recently.