Maryland Republican Gov. Larry Hogan is holding focus groups nationwide as he mulls a presidential campaign for 2024.
The outgoing governor served two terms in deep-blue Maryland and was repeatedly floated by Never Trump Republicans as a potential primary challenger to the 45th president in 2020. Hogan opted against such an effort but has begun to explore challenging him for the GOP nomination in 2024.
Hogan indicated to the Washington Examiner that his candidacy had received some positive feedback from Republicans, despite his opposition to Trump.
“What we’re finding is that even people that strongly supported Donald Trump and his policies are looking to go in a different direction. They’re willing to vote for someone who was not supportive of Trump,” he told the outlet.
The Republican has further indicated that his opposition to Trump was no longer a liability amid falling support for his candidacy.
“I felt like I was out there by myself when nobody was speaking out or standing up… I felt like I was out there on a life raft all by myself. Well, now I think the Titanic is sinking,” he said. “We are getting unbelievably positive feedback.”
Trump remains the only Republican who has formally announced his candidacy, though Florida Republican Gov. Ron DeSantis and several others have generated speculation as to their presidential ambitions.
Hogan’s record of standing apart from Trump may prove a complication for him, however, as he has allowed his feud with the former president to spill over into other elections. When Hogan’s handpicked successor lost the GOP primary to Trump-backed Dan Cox, he refused to support the nominee.
Cox’s running mate, Gordana Schifanelli, excoriated Hogan in September, saying that “after he got elected, he literally abandoned the principle of caring for the citizens who elected him and making lives better for everybody else.”