As former President Donald Trump hopes to celebrate his Senate nominee’s victory in Ohio’s Republican primary, Maryland Governor Larry Hogan will be across the country delivering a scathing speech urging the GOP to avoid the former president and to choose a new leadership.
This split-screen storyline offers a glimpse of a 2024 White House primary that could include Hogan. On one side is JD Vance, a conservative populist in the mold of Trump, who may have won the GOP Senate nomination in Ohio. On the other side, the governor of Maryland delivers a speech from the Ronald Reagan Presidential Library and Museum in Southern California in which he is expected to blitzkrieg the former president and recommend the party pursue a more traditionally conservative future.
“These speeches are well-known precursors to a presidential race,” said Republican strategist Jim Dornan. “I think we’ll see him even more in times like this as his term as governor draws to a close and he focuses more on 2024.”
Hogan, 65, won re-election in deep-blue Maryland in 2018, an otherwise sour year for Republicans nationally, and will step down in late January next year due to term limits.
As the countdown to Hogan’s administration in Annapolis unfolds, he is stepping up his political engagement with activity that is sure to fuel speculation that he will run for president in 2024. This weekend, the governor will travel to Amelia Island, Fla., near Jacksonville, to speak to a rally of the Republican Main Street Partnership, a group that supports pragmatic conservatives in the congressional primaries and general election.
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Next week, while in California for his speech at the Reagan Library, Hogan will speak at the Milken Institute in Santa Monica, Calif., outside Los Angeles, and headline two fundraisers for Lanhee. Chen, the Republican candidate for state comptroller who received a surprise. the approval of the Los Angeles Times. Chen is known in Washington circles for his work on Mitt Romney’s 2012 presidential campaign.
Later this year, Hogan is expected to make additional trips, including to early caucuses and key states in Iowa and New Hampshire.
This isn’t Hogan’s first rodeo for the Reagan Library. Indeed, shortly after Trump’s defeat at the hands of current President Joe Biden in the 2020 election, the governor appeared at an institution-sponsored event in Washington, DC. Channeling a famous Reagan speech decades ago, Hogan said the party had come to another crossroads and once again faced a “time to choose”.
Hogan defined the choice between Trump, who presided over the loss of the White House and was also about to lose control of the Senate, and the tradition of Reagan, a president who won two landslides and laid the groundwork of the 1994 Republican revolution, when the GOP won both houses of Congress in a wave.
On Tuesday, Hogan is expected to expand on that theme with more detail on his vision for the party’s leadership, according to sources familiar with the speech. The governor rarely pulls his punches when discussing his differences with Trump, and his speech at the Reagan Library is expected to be delivered with the usual blunt candor.
Hogan is the latest Republican politician to receive an invitation to the Reagan Library to participate in its “Time for Choose” speaker series, which aims to elevate future party leaders, with a focus on potential presidents.
Reagan, in the White House from 1981 to 1989, was a hugely popular two-term president, and the Republican Party he led seems antithetical to the GOP dominated by Trump, a polarizing figure ousted after just one term. But the library and museum that exist to carry on Reagan’s legacy are not taking sides in this internal debate over party leadership and have included Trump allies and alumni in the lecture series.
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Time for Choose speakers have included former New Jersey Governor Chris Christie; Arkansas Senator Tom Cotton; former Ambassador Nikki Haley; former Vice President Mike Pence; former Secretary of State Mike Pompeo; former Speaker of the House Paul Ryan; and South Carolina Senator Tim Scott.
The title, “Time for Choose,” comes from a famous speech Reagan gave on behalf of Republican Barry Goldwater’s 1964 presidential campaign in which he discussed his views on the future of the GOP.