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Asa Hutchinson, the former Arkansas governor, announced his candidacy for the 2024 Republican presidential nomination on Thursday, saying that President Donald Trump's investigations should give Americans pause.
Hutchinson, who served two terms as governor from 2015 to 2021, said that Trump's investigations into his political opponents should give Americans pause, while also noting that Trump remains popular among the GOP base.
“I'm a conservative Republican, I'm running for president, and I think the investigations of the former president should give Americans pause,” Hutchinson said in an interview with CNN's John Berman.
He added that Trump's investigations have “caused a lot of division in the country,” and that it's important for the GOP to move forward from them in order to be successful in the next election cycle.
Hutchinson also discussed his plans for the economy, saying he wants to focus on reducing government regulations and increasing economic freedom for Americans. He said he would also focus on reducing taxes, reforming the criminal justice system, and expanding access to quality education.
Hutchinson's announcement comes less than a week after former President Trump signaled that he was considering a 2024 presidential bid. Hutchinson said that while he respects Trump, he believes the Republican Party needs to move on and focus on the future.
“I think the Republican Party needs to unify and move forward,” he said. “We have to have a constructive path into the future, and I'm ready to lead that path.”
Hutchinson's candidacy is the latest in a series of potential GOP presidential contenders in the 2024 race, including former Vice President Mike Pence, South Dakota Governor Kristi Noem, and former United Nations Ambassador Nikki Haley.