“You’ve got to get through, of course, this year. But that’s an option that’s on the table,” Hutchinson, who is term-limited as governor, told CNN’s Dana Bash on “State of the Union” when asked if he was seriously considering 2024 run.
Pressed by Bash on whether he would still consider running if Trump decides to seek the 2024 GOP nomination, Hutchinson said the former President’s candidacy is “not a factor in my decision-making process.”
“I’ve made it clear: I think we ought to have a different direction in the future,” he added. “I think he did a lot of good things for our country, but we need to go a different direction.”
“I don’t believe that government should be punitive against private businesses because we disagree with them,” Hutchinson said. “To me, that’s the old Republican principle of having restrained government.”
Hutchinson told Bash last year that he would not back Trump if he decided to run in 2024 — a departure from his previous support for Trump’s 2020 reelection bid.
At the time, the governor said that although Trump would continue to have a voice in the Republican Party, the former President “should not define our future,” adding that the party needs “to respond and identify with the issues that gave him the first election and gave him support throughout his presidency.”
First elected governor in 2014, Hutchinson, who served in the US House from 1997 to 2001, has come to be known as someone who occasionally bucks the GOP while also nodding to his party’s base on certain issues.
CNN’s Andi Babineau and Chandelis Duster contributed to this report.