It may seem like the race to determine who occupies the White House come the start of the 2024 presidency is a couple of years away.
But if we’ve learned anything in recent years, it’s that Americanpolitics never sleeps, and following the recent US midterm elections (some of which are still yet to be decided), all eyes are now fixed on the next presidential race.
The process is much longer and much more arduous than many election cycles around the world, and already we have our first contender’s name thrown into the ring, as former US President Donald Trump announced that he will officially launch a third campaign.
The announcement came barely a week after Republicans had a disappointing midterm performance, forcing the party to decide whether to support a candidate whose inability to accept defeat in 2020 threatened American democracy.
“In order to make America great and glorious again, I am tonight announcing my candidacy for president of the United States,” Trump told an audience of several hundred supporters, club members and assembled reporters in a chandeliered ballroom at his Mar-a-Lago club in Florida.
So, will the US have another #Maga president in 2024 (though, given Trump’s updated “great and glorious” soundbite, it could be more like ‘#MAGAGA’)? Here is everything you need to know...
Will Donald Trump be the next US President?
It was arguably Donald Trump’s first presidential term that taught us never to trust the pollsters, and by extension, the bookmakers.
Who could have predicted that an outspoken, right-wing TV personality with zero political experience would have become leader of the free world? Millions of people around the globe woke up with surprise and disgust and Trump’s appointment in 2016. Surely it couldn’t happen again?
This time, Trump’s route to the White House is arguably much more complex, and his announcement that he will stand in the race for a second term would be a surprising turn for any former president, let alone one who made history by becoming the first to be impeached twice and whose term ended with his supporters violently storming the US Capitol in a fatal endeavour to disrupt the peaceful transition of power.
The former US Apprentice host also enters the campaign at a politically vulnerable time. He will have wanted to launch in the aftermath of overwhelming midterm results for the GOP, fueled by candidates he supported during this year’s primaries.
Instead, many of the candidates that Trump personally endorsed floundered, allowing Democrats to maintain the Senate and leaving the GOP with only a sliver of a House majority.
Far from being the uncontested party leader, Trump is already facing criticism from some of his own supporters, who say it is time for Republicans to look forward, with Florida Governor Ron DeSantis emerging as an early favourite.
According to Oddschecker, which collates the odds given by the internet’s biggest bookmakers to give a much broader view of the betting landscape, Republican DeSantis is most likely to be America’s next president, with odds of 27/11. Trump is currently thought to be second favourite, with odds of 4/1.
At the time of writing (16 November), Oddschecker suggests the following five could be the next US president:
- Ron DeSantis (27/11)
- Donald Trump (4/1)
- Joe Biden (9/2)
- Gavin Newsom (33/2)
- Kamala Harris (35/2)
Who will run for president?
But it’s not quite as simple as that in US politics. Just because Trump has declared a third presidential campaign, that does not guarantee that it will be his name on the ballot come the November 2024 elections.
There’s a lengthy process to go through for the Republican Party to choose their eventual candidate for the presidency, and the following months will likely see all sorts of names stake their claim to the White House.
Some of those names will be Republican big-hitters, some will be relatively unknown, but all will have to take part in TV debates and heated campaigns as the party whittles down the contenders to just one ahead of the final, nationwide vote.
Other Republicans, notably former Vice President Mike Pence (20/1), are taking increasingly public moves toward their own campaigns, heightening the possibility that Trump may face a highly contested GOP primary.
At the time of writing (16 November), Oddschecker’s top five potential Republican candidates look like this:
- Ron DeSantis (17/12)
- Donald Trump (7/4)
- Mike Pence (20/1)
- Nikki Haley (20/1)
- Mike DeWine (50/1)
Will Joe Biden run again?
It’s arguably just as uncertain as to who may run for president on the Democrat side. Though Joe Biden is the US’ current president, and is therefore entitled to defend his seat for another term, he is the oldest leader in American history.
By November 2024, Biden will be 81, and with a potential second term presumably taking him to the ripe age of 85, his health will be a major source of debate.
His perceived fragility is already a target for many Republican rivals, and with polls suggesting mounting unpopularity for the sitting president, could he withdraw his name to give the Democratic leadership over to a fresher faced candidate?
When he installed Kamala Harris as Vice President, there was certainly talk that Biden had made the move with his age in mind, putting in place a potential replacement ready to take power with a term’s worth of experience under her belt.
Whether that is how it all shakes out remains to be seen of course, and at this early stage, anything could happen. But the bookmakers’ early predictions suggest Biden will indeed be on the ticket, though there are a number of potential alternatives...
At the time of writing (16 November), Oddschecker’s top five potential Democratic candidates look like this:
- Joe Biden (13/8)
- Jamaal Bowman (14/5)
- Kamala Harris (11/2)
- Gavin Newsom (7/1)
- Pete Buttigieg (12/1)