Larry Hogan flirts with 2024 run, warns against GOP nominating ‘unelectable’ candidates

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Gov. Larry Hogan, R-Md., appeared on CBS’s “Face the Nation” Sunday where he hinted at presidential ambitions and gave a dire warning to the GOP.

Host Major Garrett observed that the term-limited governor had recently traveled to Iowa and New Hampshire and asked, “When are you announcing your 2024 bid?” 

Hogan quipped, “Maybe this morning,” before demurring, “I’m just going to finish my term as governor.” The governor suggested that he has been merely going to New Hampshire to “help the House Republican caucus up there.”

When asked if he had been looking “very seriously” at a presidential run, Hogan responded, “I think that’s probably an exaggeration,” later acknowledging he is taking a “lukewarm maybe, lukewarm” approach to considering his prospects.

FILE – Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan announced he will not run for U.S. Senate during a news conference on Tuesday, Feb. 8, 2022 in Annapolis, Md. 
(AP Photo/Brian Witte, File)

HOGAN, IN NEW HAMPSHIRE, SAYS TRUMP’S GOP SWAY ‘DIMINISHED’ 

While on the subject of elections, the host asked Hogan how alarmed he was when his “preferred Republican gubernatorial candidate, Kelly Schulz,” lost the Republican primary for Maryland governor to Trump-endorsed candidate State Delegate Dan Cox. The race was viewed by some as a proxy battle between the former president and Hogan himself.

“It was really sad, and it’s what I’ve been talking about for two years,” Hogan replied. 

“This should be a really huge year for Republicans just because of the failures of the Democrats who are in control of everything, and Biden’s low approval ratings. But we could blow it by nominating unelectable people and that’s exactly what’s happening across the country and why the wave is going to be more of a ripple rather than a tidal wave,” Hogan warned.

Garrett called on Hogan to address past comments, asking, “You called the winner in that Republican gubernatorial primary, Dan Cox, a Qanon whack job and a nut. I take it you’re endorsing the Democratic nominee, Wes Moore?”

Del. Dan Cox, a Maryland state legislator who is seeking the Republican nomination for governor of Maryland, talks to reporters, in Annapolis, Md., Thursday, June 30, 2022. 

Del. Dan Cox, a Maryland state legislator who is seeking the Republican nomination for governor of Maryland, talks to reporters, in Annapolis, Md., Thursday, June 30, 2022. 
(AP Photo/Brian Witte)

TRUMP, HOGAN, TRADE FIRE IN MARYLAND’S GOP GUBERNATORIAL PRIMARY

“No, I’m not nominating anybody in the race,” Hogan said. “I’ve made it very clear that this guy should not be the nominee and he shouldn’t be governor. But I’m not getting involved in endorsing in the race.”

He lamented the rise of controversial Republican candidates, “Not just Maryland, this is happening across the country.” He suggested the phenomenon is “why Mitch McConnell is saying we may not win the Senate. It’s why we were hoping to pick up seats in governors’ races, and now we’re not.”

He warned that when it comes to controversies such as the 2020 presidential election’s legitimacy, the Republican Party needs to look forward rather than backward. 

“I think if the Republicans are to get any power back, we’re going to have to start talking about the issues people care about and not re-litigating what happened in 2020 or denying things that are fact,” he explained.

Maryland Governor Larry Hogan (R-MD) holds a news conference with updates about the state’s response to the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic at the Maryland State Capitol in Annapolis, Maryland, U.S. July 22, 2020. 

Maryland Governor Larry Hogan (R-MD) holds a news conference with updates about the state’s response to the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic at the Maryland State Capitol in Annapolis, Maryland, U.S. July 22, 2020. 
(REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst)

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At a Thursday campaign rally, President Biden said, “There are not many real Republicans anymore,” before touting Hogan as a Republican Democrats “can deal with.”

“We disagree … but at least he’s within the mainstream of the Republican Party,” Biden added of Hogan. “I respect conservative Republicans. I don’t respect these MAGA Republicans.”

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