Four GOP leaders from Florida are being floated as potential nominees to run for president in 2024.
On the day President Joe Biden was officially sworn in as the 46th president, PredictIt, an online political betting market, listed Republican presidential nominees for the 2024 presidential election. Donald Trump, who will now make Palm Beach his permanent home as his presidency comes to an end, naturally topped the list — trading at 17 cents a share.
The 45th president also had some familiar company joining him, with three other GOP leaders in the Sunshine State being featured on the political stock market website. Under Trump were Senators Marco Rubio and Rick Scott, as well as Governor Ron DeSantis. Both Rubio and DeSantis opened at 6 cents a share, positioning them higher up on the list of potential candidates. The two Republicans were followed closely by Scott, who opened at 4 cents.
Other notable names on the list include former South Carolina Governor Nikki Haley (16¢), former Vice President Mike Pence (12¢), Texas Senator Ted Cruz (8¢), Arkansas Senator Tom Cotton (8¢), Utah Senator Mitt Romney (5¢), Fox News Host Tucker Carlson (5¢), South Dakota Governor Kristi Noem, and Donald Trump Jr. (5¢).
Conventional wisdom says the money is still on Trump in 2024. The now-former president is still beloved by a swath of the Republican base that feels disenfranchised from last November’s election results. Trump also set up his base of operations in Florida — a state that delivered for him in 2016 and 2020 — and has developed a strong foothold in the always important piece of political real estate. Not to mention his vague statement about potentially returning to the political arena.
“We will be back in some form,” Trump told an audience of supporters in his parting remarks as president. “Have a good life. We will see you soon.”
While some Republicans still have a palate for another four years of Trump, some of Florida’s finest could also have their sights set on the Oval Office. DeSantis, despite being labeled ‘Public Enemy No. 1’ by legacy media outlets, is beloved by his GOP cohorts and is a fan favorite among conservatives in his state. In his short stint as governor, he’s proven he can reach across the aisle — showing bipartisanship in areas involving the environment — despite being a stalwart of Trump. The governor is also a proven winner and has set himself up for an easy re-election victory in his upcoming gubernatorial race in 2022.
Meanwhile, the two senators from Florida have a wealth of campaign experience that they could flex if they decide to lay the foundation for a potential presidential bid.
Rubio has been on the stage before and was considered a darkhorse in the 2016 Republican Primary. The senior senator performed well, taking bronze in the Iowa Caucus and winning the Minnesota Primary on March 1. Rubio would eventually finish third in the final tally — behind Trump and Cruz — with 167 delegates. Rubio still has a core group of Republicans in the state who have supported him since he took office in 2011, and his presence on a national level is as relevant as ever.
Scott, also, is no stranger to the big stage. The former Florida governor has a perfect 3-0 record when it comes to campaigning under the bright lights, and is a proven fundraising machine (literally). The junior senator also boasts an impressive net worth, and now serves as chairman of the National Republican Senate Campaign (NRSC) — a position that could be used as a stepping stone if he manages to unite the fractured party and win back the Senate in 2022.
Though it’s still early in the process, the political cogs behind-the-scene remain in perpetual motion. And given Florida’s ‘red wave’ in 2020 that saw the once toss-up state solidify itself as a solid red bastion, all eyes are sure to remain fixated on who emerges from the Republican stronghold heading into the next election cycle.
To view PredictIt’s list of potential presidential hopefuls, click here.