Term-limited Republican Gov. Larry Hogan is marking eight years of steering the blue state of Maryland and looking towards a future that may include a 2024 GOP presidential run as he gathers with family, friends, supporters and donors from across the country on Wednesday.
Hogan is taking part in a leadership summit in Annapolis, Maryland’s capital city, that’s attracting high-profile GOP leaders such as former Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice, former California Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger, and retired neurosurgeon Dr. Ben Carson — a 2016 presidential candidate who served as Housing and Urban Development secretary in former President Donald Trump’s administration.
The summit will be followed by two celebratory events in nearby Baltimore that are hosted by An America United, the Hogan-aligned public advocacy group, and the Better Path Forward PAC, a recently launched federal political action committee.
From the launch of the PAC to numerous visits this year to Iowa and New Hampshire – the states that kick off the Republican presidential nominating calendar — as he crisscrossed the country supporting fellow Republicans running in the 2022 elections — Hogan’s made many of the moves a politician makes in advance of launching a White House campaign.
Hogan also sat down for multiple national interviews and met with other GOP leaders and donors just before the Thanksgiving holiday at appearances in Orlando, Florida at the Republican Governors Association’s annual winter meeting and in Las Vegas, Nevada at the Republican Jewish Coalition’s annual leadership meeting, which was seen as the first major GOP 2024 presidential cattle call.
“Early next year we’re going to be sitting down and figuring out what the future looks like, but I haven’t ruled anything out,” Hogan reiterated in an interview with Fox News Digital on the sidelines of the RGA’s confab.
And Hogan insisted that Trump’s Nov. 15 announcement declaring his candidacy for president wouldn’t impact his own decision-making process.
“That doesn’t really have any impact on me. I think it may affect a lot of other people’s decisions,” Hogan emphasized. “For me, I’m definitely going to be a voice. I care very deeply about getting my party back on track. I care about the country being off on the wrong track and being controlled by Democrats. And I’m going to see what’s the best role for me.”
Hogan, who’s long been a vocal GOP critic of Trump, stressed during his Republican Jewish Coalition speech that the former president “said we would be winning so much we’d get tired of winning. Well, I’m sick and tired of our party losing. This is the third election in a row that we lost and should have won.”
“I say three strikes and you’re out,” Hogan argued.
The Baltimore event for Better Path Forward, which roughly 300 people are invited to attend, will serve as the first major fundraiser for the new PAC. And the celebration organized by An America United is expected to draw roughly 1,000 people.
“For eight years, Governor Hogan has demonstrated how to lead and deliver common sense conservative results in a deep-blue state, and we’ve seen overwhelming support in Maryland and across the country for building on this model of success. We are excited to host these events to celebrate that success and look toward the future,” An America United executive director David Weinman told Fox News.
Hogan in recent weeks has been a leading voice among a chorus of Republicans – in the wake of a lackluster performance by the GOP in the midterm elections – who are emphasizing that a forward-looking approach and greater attention to the issues matter most to voters.
The former president has taken plenty of incoming fire from fellow Republicans angry that many of the Trump-endorsed far right GOP nominees, many of whom heavily supported the former president’s unproven claims that the 2020 election was “rigged” and “stolen,” lost in key races that arguably cost the party control of the Senate, a larger House majority, and crucial governorships.
Hogan told Fox News that “commonsense conservative Republicans who focused on and talked about the issues people cared about, it was a great night for them.”
“But where we lost was when we nominated candidates that were not up to par and that people just decided they weren’t what they were looking for,” Hogan added.
“They didn’t see them as problem solvers, didn’t hear them talking about commonsense solutions. So the folks that were focused on the past rather than the future and talked about fringe issues that most people didn’t care as much about were all almost universally defeated. What should have been a huge red wave turned out to be a tiny ripple.”
Hogan suggested the GOP needs “to reexamine how we go about becoming a party with a message that appeals to more people and that can win elections.”