WASHINGTON – Republican Asa Hutchinson says he has not made a decision yet about running for president in 2024 but the former Arkansas governor said in an interview he plans to decide in the next several months.
Hutchinson told USA TODAY he has continued to "seriously consider" a presidential bid as he visits the early voting states of Iowa, New Hampshire and South Carolina
"I'll make a decision down the road. Obviously, it'll have to be in the first half of this year. But stay tuned," he said.
If Hutchinson, who left office earlier this month, decides to run, he could find himself in a crowded GOP field. As many as a dozen other Republicans have toured early contest states.
Former President Donald Trump is the only candidate in either political party who has formally announced a 2024 White House bid.
Hutchinson, 72, said "there is a consensus that there will be alternatives to Donald Trump" and stressed, "I should be in each of those conversations."
"It's important to have a governor that knows how to exercise executive leadership, somebody who's got a record, (at) both the national and state level, of solving problems, and so it takes a little bit of time to get that message out and to develop the support that's needed for that kind of endeavor," he said.
Hutchinson has also served as a member of the U.S. House and as administrator of the Drug Enforcement Administration under former President George. W. Bush.