Former Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan said Sunday that he would consider not running for president in 2024 if his bid would increase former President Donald Trump's chances of winning re-election.
"I’m a lifelong Republican who wants to support the nominee of the party, whoever that is. However, you know, I’ve said before, I didn’t support Trump, I wouldn’t support Trump," Hogan said during an exclusive interview on NBC News’ “Meet the Press.”
Host Chuck Todd asked Hogan, an outspoken GOP critic of Trump who has been weighing his own presidential bid, “If you thought your candidacy was going to contribute to ... inadvertently helping Donald Trump, would that be a reason not to run?”
“That’d be a pretty good reason to consider not running. Absolutely," Hogan said, adding, "I don’t care that much about my future in the Republican Party. I care about making sure we have a future for the Republican Party."
Hogan was also asked to comment on the Republican National Committee’s reported effort to block Republican presidential candidates from the debate stage if they do not sign a pledge to support the eventual GOP nominee.
"I think it's kind of silly because it’s not going to happen,” he said.
“I mean, if they say you’re not gonna be on the debate stage, if you won’t commit to support the nominee, then President Trump won’t be on the debate stage,” Hogan said. “And I don’t think anybody believes that that’s going to happen.”
In an appearance this month on conservative radio host Hugh Hewitt’s show, Hogan was asked whether he would support the former president if he is the GOP nominee in 2024. He replied: “Yeah, I just don’t think he’s going to be the nominee, but I’ll support the nominee.”
Hogan later clarified on Twitter: “Trump won’t commit to supporting the Republican nominee, and I won’t commit to supporting him. As I have repeatedly said, I fully expect to support the Republican nominee — who I don’t believe will be Trump.”
In recent years, Hogan has also criticized those within the GOP who stood by Trump amid his refusal to concede the 2020 presidential election.
“It bothers me you have to swear fealty to the dear leader or you get kicked out of the party. It just doesn’t make any sense,” Hogan told “Meet the Press” in May 2021. “It’s sort of a circular firing squad where we’re just attacking members of our own party instead of focusing on solving problems."
Trump announced his third presidential bid in November. Nikki Haley, a former South Carolina governor and U.N. ambassador under Trump, also declared her candidacy this month. Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis and Sen. Tim Scott of South Carolina are also considered likely presidential candidates.
Asked whether he has made a decision about his potential run for the White House, Hogan said he has not but is going to “take a pretty serious look at this.
“I’m traveling around the country just trying to get a feel for what Republican voters want, what Americans are looking for, and we’re going to make a decision in a relatively short period of time,” Hogan said.