By Lou Scataglia
The 2016 Presidential Election was a monumental time for our country. Of the 17 Republican Presidential candidates, many ran stellar campaigns, and some may have better prospects in 2024. The Republican Party is often dubbed the “Party of Trump,” so it’s worth questioning who in the GOP can lead the party once Trump has fulfilled his duties. Fortunately, some of the GOP candidates who ran in 2016 were young, in political years, so their chances in future elections could be just as good. Other up and coming Republicans already seem poised to chance the presidency, like Nikki Haley, and the seasoned vets, like Ted Cruz, won’t be counted out. For these reasons, it’s worth examining the GOP in their life after Trump.
Gaining popularity for her “no BS” approach as Ambassador to the United Nations, Nikki Haley seems to have cemented herself in the Trump Administration. Her stoic attitude and “America first” mindset has grasped the support of 75% of Republicans, and a staggering 55% of Democrats, according to a poll from Quinnipiac. Haley, at only 46 years old, can afford to wait until 2024 to announce a potential campaign. As of now, it seems as if Haley has the best chance to become the first female president, and, with the support of a large chunk of the political sphere, certainly has a fighting chance.
I firmly believe that if Donald Trump had never run, Ted Cruz would be president. A conservative Senator from Texas, Ted Cruz remains a strong voice for social and fiscal conservatism. His 2016 presidential campaign was simply not enough, finishing second in the delegate count with 559, but I found it mightily surprising that a politician as conservative as Senator Cruz did so well compared to the rest of the field. Ted Cruz remains one of the most popular politicians in the country, and at only 47 years old, he can make another run at the presidency.
Ben Sasse should excite conservatives. He assumed office in 2015 as Senator, and has gained popularity since. Sasse, a harsh Trump critic, has tried to distance himself from the President, at times. While this may not bode well for a presidential campaign, Sasse could easily grab the support of evangelicals, running a Ted Cruz 2016-type campaign.
As a member of the U.S. House of Representatives for Ohio’s fourth district, Jim Jordan has been a vocal leader in Washington. Most notably, Rep. Jordan has been critical of the Robert Mueller “Witch Hunt”, going after Rod Rosenstein and Christopher Wray during various hearings. Furthermore, Jim Jordan is among the most conservative Republicans in Washington, earning a perfect score from the American Conservative Union, while touting a pro-life, pro-limited government stance. Jim Jordan is a true conservative and would excite Republican voters across the nation.
A big advantage the GOP has over the Democratic Party is their vast list of potential candidates for president. This article only lists four, but I could mention another fifteen if I needed too. Whether it’s 2020 or 2024, the GOP will be stacked with political heavyweights, ranging from establishment Republicans to staunch Conservatives. Some will be repeats from 2016, but expect to see a few new faces. Donald Trump took the GOP by storm during the 2016 election, and life after Trump is expected to be much different. How will Trump’s base vote when he’s left office? Will they turn to someone like Mike Pence, or opt for a more conservative choice in Jim Jordan? However they decide, they, and the rest of the GOP, will be blessed with a plethora of solid candidates to continue and build upon the legacy set by the current administration.