WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Former Maryland Governor Larry Hogan said on Sunday he will not seek the 2024 Republican U.S. presidential nomination, aiming to avoid inadvertently boosting Donald Trump’s chances by creating a “multicar pileup” crowded field of candidates beneficial to the former president’s candidacy.
Hogan, who served eight years as Maryland governor ending in January, is considered a moderate in a party that has moved rightward.
Trump won his party’s 2016 nomination after facing off against 16 other Republican candidates. In that large field, various candidates split the anti-Trump vote in the state-by-state battle for the nomination, allowing him to prevail in a battle of attrition. Trump went on to defeat Democrat Hillary Clinton, but lost his 2020 re-election bid to Democrat Joe Biden, who is expected to run again in 2024.
“To once again be a successful governing party, we must move on from Mr. Trump,” Hogan wrote in a New York Times opinion piece published on Sunday. “The stakes are too high for me to risk being part of another multicar pileup that could potentially help Mr. Trump recapture the nomination.”
Trump announced his 2024 candidacy in November. He has one major opponent announced for the Republican nomination – former South Carolina Governor Nikki Haley – though activist investor Vivek Ramaswamy also has entered the race.
Florida Governor Ron DeSantis, former Vice President Mike Pence and former Secretary of State Mike Pompeo are among those considering challenging Trump for the nomination.
(Reporting by Arshad Mohammed; Editing by Will Dunham)
On Tuesday, former two-term Maryland Gov. Martin O’Malley announced his decision not to pursue a campaign for the United States presidency in the 2016 election.
In a statement sent to the press, O’Malley said, “I intend to also stand behind the Democratic nominee– whomever that may be, and work hard that he or she is successful in the election.”
The Democrat, who served as both governor and mayor of Baltimore, had been courting key party activists and building a platform, making trips to the key states of Iowa and New Hampshire in recent months, in the hopes of preparing for a competitive run.
Despite his competitive governmental experience, which included successes in areas such as immigration and gun control, the Democratic field is proving to be a crowded one, with many polls showing front-running candidate Hillary Rodham Clinton far ahead of potential challengers.
In a statement following the official announcement, Rep. Chris Van Hollen, who served in the Maryland legislature with O’Malley, praised his former counterpart’s values.
“I have worked with Martin O’Malley for more than 20 years and have seen firsthand his commitment to strengthening the middle class and advancing progressive values,” he said.
O’Malley is currently serving as a professor of practice at the University of Maryland’s School of Public Policy, where he delivers lectures on government and public service. He will hold his first class there on October 5.