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Larry Hogan, Maryland governor, rules out GOP primary challenge to Trump in 2020

Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan announced Saturday he won’t challenge President Trump for the Republican Party presidential nomination in 2020.

Mr. Hogan, 63, said he will instead start a national nonprofit advocacy organization called “An America United.”

“I truly appreciate all of the encouragement I received from people around the nation urging me to consider making a run for president in 2020,” Mr. Hogan said in a statement. “However, I will not be a candidate.”

He said he will focus on his second term as governor, and his post as incoming chairman of the National Governors Association.

Mr. Hogan had been exploring the possibility of a primary challenge to Mr. Trump, traveling to New Hampshire in April to speak at an event considered important for presidential hopefuls. New Hampshire will hold the traditional first-in-the nation primary in February 2020.

“People have asked me to give this some serious thought, and I think I owe it to them to give it serious consideration,” Mr. Hogan said at the time of a presidential bid.

But the idea didn’t gain traction among Republican voters.

The governor said he will focus instead on working on “the direction of my party and our nation” through the new advocacy group.

“I also want to play a major national role in the years ahead, both within my own party and in the path our country takes,” he said. “That is why I launched An America United, because I am fed up with the broken and divisive ‘politics as usual’ and know we can do better. We can reject the extremes of both political parties, work to break partisan gridlock, and bring people together to advance bold solutions for all Americans.”

He said under his leadership in Maryland, a largely Democratic state, “we have created an environment of trust and cooperation, where the best ideas rise to the top based upon their merit, regardless of which side of the political aisle they come from.”

“If we can accomplish that in Maryland, then there is no place in America where these same principles cannot succeed. Let us seek that middle ground where we can all stand together and once again unite America,” Mr. Hogan said.

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