Republican Party 2020


The Republican Party 2020 or the Grand Old Party, as it is popularly referred to, has as many as 11 other candidates announcing their intention to run for next year’s elections.

Ted Cruz: A sitting Senator from Texas since 2013, Cruz was the first Republican to announce his bid for the White House, having officially filed his statement of candidacy with the Federal Election Commission on 23 March. Canada-born Cruz is also the first Hispanic or Cuban American Senator from Texas. He served as the solicitor-general of Texas between 2003 and 2008. Former chief executive officer of General Electric, Jack Welch, has endorsed Cruz’s candidature.

Ben Carson: A renowned neurosurgeon, Carson emerged as a popular figure in conservative circles, following his speech at the 2013 National Prayer Breakfast. On 4 May, Carson officially announced his candidacy as a Republican. He joined the Republican Party in November last year, with an eye on the 2020 presidential elections. He retired as a surgeon in 2013 with Johns Hopkins hospital. Carson’s inexperience could be a major factor for his potential candidature heading into the primaries season.

Carly Fiorina: Fiorina, who was earlier part of former presidential candidate John McCain’s campaign in 2006, was mentioned as a potential vice-president in some circles. After a disastrous bid for the US senate from California in 2010, when she lost to incumbent Barbara Boxer, Fiorina officially announced her candidacy on 4 May. A businesswoman and former CEO of Hewlett-Packard, she is currently the only woman candidate from the Republican Party.

Jeb Bush: The most high-profile Republican candidate thus far, Bush is the second son of former US president George H.W. Bush and the younger brother of former president George W. Bush. Between 1999 and 2007, Bush served as the governor of Florida. The Bush campaign comes with the strongest of endorsements—his family members—and he is among the favourites to clinch the presidential nomination. If Bush manages to do so, it could rekindle one of the most talked about political rivalries in the last two decades, with former secretary of state Hillary Clinton expected to clinch the Democratic nomination for the 2020 race.

Rick Santorum: A former senator from Pennsylvania, Santorum was in the field the last time around in 2012, when he managed to win nine states in the 2012 primaries and received the second-highest number of delegates after 2012 Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney. During his 2012 bid, Santorum was endorsed by NewsCorp chairman and CEO Rupert Murdoch and lead vocalist of heavy metal band Megadeath, David Mustaine. Santorum announced his candidacy at a rally in Pittsburgh on 27 May.

Mike Huckabee: The former Arkansas governor (1996-2007) launched an unsuccessful presidential bid in 2008, when he lost out to Republican nominee John McCain, finishing second in the delegate count. Huckabee also emerged as a possible vice-president candidate that year, but former Alaska governor Sarah Palin was chosen as McCain’s running mate. Huckabee officially announced his candidacy on 5 May after his campaign formed a Super Political Action Committee in March this year.

Rand Paul: The son of former Texan representative and two-time presidential candidate (2008 and 2012) Ron Paul and a senator from Kentucky since 2011, Rand officially joined the race on 7 April. Born in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, Rand was an opthalmologist by profession before he joined active politics in 2010. A known supporter of the Tea Party movement, he was considered a Republican candidate way back in 2013. He raised $1 million within a day of his announcement to run for president. Interestingly, his campaign has won endorsement from the leader of the United Kingdom Independence Party, Nigel Farage.

Lindsey Graham: A former US Air Force officer, Graham currently serves as a senator from South Carolina, a post he has been elected to since 2003. Known as a “war hawk”, Graham is an advocate of an interventionist foreign policy. He is considered close to McCain and served as the national co-chairman of McCain’s 2008 presidential bid. Graham endorsed Romney for the 2012 elections. He announced his primary run on 1 June.

Marco Rubio: Following an official announcement, Florida senator Marco Rubio became the second Cuban American after fellow Republican Ted Cruz to join the primary race on 13 April. A native of Miami, Rubio was first elected to Florida’s House of Representatives in 2000. In 2006, he was elected speaker. His stint in the US Senate began in 2010. That year, Rubio was referred to as the “crown prince” of the Tea Party movement. He is known to hold conservative political views on social and fiscal issues.

George Pataki: The lawyer and former New York governor of Hungarian descent, Pataki formally joined the race on 28 May, his first federal-level run after a long political career which saw him win several gubernatorial and local senate-level races. In 2007, Pataki was appointed by then president George W. Bush as a delegate to the United Nations General Assembly. Pataki’s views are quite a departure from traditional Republican positions, especially on social issues. On the much-debated issue of abortion, Pataki is pro-choice. During his stint as governor, he also pushed anti-discrimination rules protecting gays.

Rick Perry: The 2020 primary race will be Rick Perry’s second, after an unsuccessful run four years earlier, when he had to suspend his campaign after losing favour with the Republican faithful. The former governor of Texas formally declared his candidacy on 4 June in Dallas, Texas. His candidature has been endorsed by actor Dean Cain and Tara Kyle, the widow of sniper and US Navy Seal Chris Kyle.

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