Asa Hutchinson Enters GOP 2024 Presidential Race
On Wednesday, former Arkansas Governor Asa Hutchinson announced his entry into the 2024 White House race. Hutchinson, who served in Congress and held leadership positions in the Drug Enforcement Administration and the Department of Homeland Security, has a long history of public service. He ran as a consistent conservative, stating that his experience, record, and leadership make him unique among candidates.
Hutchinson left the Arkansas governor’s office in January and made multiple visits to early primary states, including Iowa, New Hampshire, and South Carolina. Last weekend, he told a gathering of evangelical voters in Iowa that he is a candidate for president in 2024.
Hutchinson’s Record and Stance on Trump
Hutchinson’s record includes tax cuts and record surpluses during his tenure as governor. While his prepared remarks didn’t mention any GOP candidate, he stated that his state’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic was better than Florida’s. Hutchinson has been a vocal critic of former President Donald Trump and has called for accountability for the January 6, 2021 Capitol attack, which Trump’s supporters orchestrated. He told Fox News that Trump disqualified himself from serving the country after the events of January 6.
Hutchinson’s Prospects and Challenges
The 72-year-old Hutchinson’s campaign is built on being a competent executive with vast experience in public service. He will likely face tough competition from other GOP candidates such as former President Trump, who remains popular among the party’s base. Hutchinson acknowledged the challenge of competing with larger war chests, such as those of Trump and Florida Governor Ron DeSantis, but emphasized the importance of hard work and raising name identification. Republican consultant Ryan Williams stated that while Hutchinson’s experience is impressive, the base of the party that turns out in primaries doesn’t value experience, making it challenging for Hutchinson to stand out in a crowded field of candidates.