2023 will be a critical year for the GOP as the party’s future begins to take shape as more candidates enter the race to become the party’s standard bearer.
Several names are being thrown into the race, and calling a clear winner is becoming more challenging given the upsets the most influential candidate — former President Donald Trump — has had since announcing his bid.
These are the five names of those who — besides Trump — have the potential to become the GOP’s 2024 Presidential nominee.
Florida Governor Ron DeSantis
DeSantis hasn’t announced an intention to run in 2024, but if he decided to go that route, he appears to be the candidate most likely to give Trump a run for his money.
DeSantis won Florida’s gubernatorial race by 20 points, making the point that embracing culture wars and a fight against COVID-19 lockdown and vaccines paid off tremendously.
The Florida Governor has also garnered the support of GOP megadonors, ending his 2022 campaign with $90 million in various bank accounts.
Senator Ted Cruz (R-Texas)
Cruz was the last one in the ring with Trump in 2016, losing the GOP primary to the future former-President.
If he decided to run for the Presidential nomination, Cruz would be a significant player. However, his ambitions are likely to be complicated because he is also up for reelection in the Senate in 2024.
He addressed this challenge at the Republican Jewish Coalition, stating that he intended to seek reelection to the Senate, but explained there was still “plenty of time to discuss” a 2024 Presidential bid.
Former Vice President Mike Pence
Pence has consistently hinted that he is considering entering a 2024 race.
He has also — with increased consistency — put distance between himself and former President Donald Trump while still touting the accomplishments of the Trump-Pence administration.
Polls show that if he decides to enter the race, he’ll face significant pushback from the GOP base.
Senator Tim Scott (R-S.C.)
The only Black American Senator Tim Scott supporters believe he meets the criteria to unite the MAGA arm of the GOP with a more moderate base.
Trips to early-voting states like Iowa and New Hampshire suggest that the Senator may pursue a 2024 Bid.
Should he decide to run, he has a head start with $20 million left over in funding, according to Open Secrets.
Former Secretary of State Mike Pompeo
Pompeo has expressed interest in running for 2024, telling “Fox News Sunday” in December that he and his family were “thinking through” a 2024 bid.
Pompeo has the platform to reach the GOP base, given he is a frequent Fox contributor, with the leadership chops to back up a bid.
But what could prevent the former director of the CIA and one-time Secretary is a need for a dedicated base.