Texas Senator Ted Cruz’ decision to not endorse Donald Trump during his Republican National Convention speech earned him a chorus of boos but also increased speculation that Cruz is planning to run for president again in 2020 – whether or not Donald Trump wins the presidency.
Numerous media reports say that Cruz is already working on building a stronger national organization to stage another presidential bid (including starting two non-profit organizations to help him do so), and they quote Republican sources as saying the Texas senator is even planning to run against a President Trump, were he to win. Some Republicans, though, believe that Trump will have a hard time defeating Hillary Clinton (she leads in many polls, although they are tightening).
That would open up another incumbent-less Republican primary. The New York Times reported that Cruz is not the only vanquished 2016 Republican keeping an eye on 2020. “For now, much of the positioning is going on relatively quietly,” reported The Times. “Yet potential candidates are already making moves to pave their paths.” The newspaper listed Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker, Ohio Gov. John Kasich, and Florida Sen. Marco Rubio as those believed to be open to 2020 runs.
Those reportedly thinking about 2020 aren’t only the 2016 primary candidates. They include politicians such as Arkansas U.S. Sen. Tom Cotton. Of course, when speculating about 2016, it’s important not to forget that no one would have predicted Trump’s ascendancy to the top of the Republican ticket. Thus, it’s impossible to rule out a wild card candidate.
Cruz, says the Times, is just the most obvious candidate positioning (and there are other Republican stars waiting in the wings, like South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley). His decision to not endorse Trump was met with boos and anger on the convention floor; however, whether it plays outside the convention hall could be another matter, as he positions himself as the conservative choice down the road. Other possible 2020 candidates, such as Walker, are adopting a different strategy; the Wisconsin governor threw his support to Trump (as have other former Trump rivals, like Chris Christie).
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