As the U.S. barrels toward the presidential election this November, with daily reminders Americans are still struggling with COVID-19 and demanding social justice reforms, Maryland Governor, Larry Hogan is focused on getting his constituents through. But in his soon-to-be-released book, he says there were some DC insiders who wanted him to consider a higher office.
In Still Standing: Surviving Cancer, Riots, and the Toxic Politics That Divide America, set to be released July 28, Hogan reveals that high-ranking members of the Trump administration approached him about a potential presidential run.
"I had a number of people encourage me to do so, but I didn't really think that there was much of a chance of a Republican challenge in a primary this year," he said.
While a run for the White House is off the table for the Maryland governor — at least for 2020 — he thinks the GOP needs serious reform in order to maintain political relevance, particularly in the height of social and racial awakenings across the U.S.
"I think we're doing a poor job of communicating and reaching out and trying to appeal to a broader base," Hogan explained. "We can't keep shrinking the Republican party's base and expect to continue to win national elections."
Often outspoken about President Trump's handling of the coronavirus pandemic, Hogan said the administration "fell short, particularly early on" and those afraid to be frank with the president continue to damage the Republican party.
"We'll talk about those things but they may not be willing to come up and say those things publicly and take the wrath of a tweet, or potentially getting primaried or being attacked," he said.
When it comes to voting in the November election, nothing is off the table for Governor Hogan — including support for former Vice President Joe Biden.
“We’ll have plenty of time between now and November to figure it out,” Hogan said. “It’s possible. I may just decide to write somebody in.”
Meanwhile, for Maryland’s residents, Hogan is working to ensure that even amid the pandemic, each person can cast a vote by providing absentee ballots.
But with the election more than 100 days away, Hogan’s primary concern is to continue battling COVID-19 as cases rise, particularly in Maryland.
“It’s about robust testing and contact tracing and making sure we’re doing all the things we’ve been talking about for months, which is masking and social distancing,” he said.
While the governor is one of the rare Republicans to speak out against President Trump, he admits that in order for the country to successfully beat coronavirus, regardless of political affiliation, it has to be done together.