From the announcement of Donald Trump’s candidacy for the presidency of 2024, the vast majority of analysts speculated on his chances of success as well as on the identity of potential rivals. If many immediately identified the governor of Florida, Ron DeSantis, the portrait is about to evolve.
If Donald Trump remains the only one to have officially launched his operations, we expect at least four or five other participants. DeSantis of course, but also Mike Pence, Mike Pompeo, the governor of New Hampshire, Chris Sununu, or even the senator from South Carolina, Tim Scott.
So as not to forget anyone, we could keep an eye on a few other chosen ones. Ted Cruz, already in the ranks in 2016, could be tempted by a return, but I would especially shine the spotlight on the governor of Virginia, Glenn Youngkin, the former governor of Maryland Larry Hogan and the governor of South Dakota, Kristi no.
As early as November 2021, I drew your attention to a possible candidacy of former South Carolina Governor Nikki Haley. She should confirm her participation in the race on Wednesday. She seems to me to have all the qualities to triumph over Joe Biden if the latter is indeed the Democratic candidate in 2024.
Haley made a name for herself by becoming the youngest governor to head state in 2010, the first woman also from a minority background. Conservative, without being radically MAGA, she remained loyal to her president when she represented the administration at the UN, but she knew how to distance herself when the time came.
She is not associated with Trump’s darkest or most controversial statements and she left office long before the misinformation and violence associated with the contestation of the 2020 election results and, importantly, long before the assault on the Capitol.
While the abortion issue is expected to sway female voters in 2024, expect also the former governor to insist she may well be the only woman in the running . Asked about the identity of her possible opponents, all men, she also launched: “may the best woman win”, that the best woman wins!
Difficult scenario for the Republicans
I am convinced of the potential and the relevance of a candidacy of Nikki Haley, but her entry on the scene risks causing headaches for the leaders of the Republican Party and their strategists.
As long as Trump hangs on, the multiplication of candidates will have the effect of dividing the vote. As the base of the 45th president is acquired, the others will only tear each other apart. A repeat of the 2016 script.
So far, the big loser from Wednesday’s announcement is Ron DeSantis. Alone on the track against Trump, he has a chance, whereas if he is challenged, he should give victory to Trump. This is what these figures from a Yahoo!/YouGov simulation seem to confirm.