Former Arkansas governor Asa Hutchinson will make his pitch to ‘First in the South’ voters over the weekend as he travels from his home state for a three-day swing through the Palmetto State.
According to a media advisory from his political organization – the America Strong & Free PAC – Hutchinson will arrive in “Charlestown” this coming Friday (March 17, 2023). On Saturday, Hutchinson is scheduled to address the Vision ’24 conference – a gathering sponsored by South Carolina’s leading social conservative group, Palmetto Family.
Former South Carolina governor (and announced 2024 candidate) Nikki Haley is scheduled to attend that gathering, as is U.S. senator Tim Scott – who is strongly considering his own presidential bid. Other confirmed attendees at the event include 2020 presidential candidate Tulsi Gabbard, U.S. senator Marsha Blackburn of Tennessee, U.S. senator John Neely Kennedy of Louisiana.
Hutchinson – 72, of Bentonville, Arkansas – served two terms as governor of his state from 2015-2023. During that stint, he spent one year as chairman of the National Governors Association (NGA). A three-term congressman from Arkansas’ third district, Hutchinson initially gained fame (infamy?) as one of the thirteen U.S. House managers during the impeachment trial of former U.S. president Bill Clinton.
Under former U.S. president George W. Bush, Hutchinson served as the eighth administrator of the U.S. Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA) and as the nation’s first undersecretary for border and transportation security in the Department of Homeland Security (DHS).
An attorney, Hutchinson began his public career in 1982 as a U.S. attorney for the western district of Arkansas. He was appointed to that post by then-U.S. president Ronald Reagan.
Does Hutchinson have a shot at the White House in 2024? Doubtful.
So far, his primary function in the primary process appears to be going after former U.S. president Donald Trump – the presumed GOP frontrunner.
During an interview with USA Today over the weekend, Hutchinson said Trump should bow out of the 2024 election in the event he is indicted in connection with any number of pending investigations.
"It's out of respect for the institution of the presidency of the United States," Hutchinson told the paper. "And, that's a distraction that is difficult to run for the highest office in the land under those circumstances."
"There's just a lot of turmoil out there with the number of investigations going on," Hutchinson added.
Trump is the focus of criminal inquiries in New York and Georgia - as well as an ongoing U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) inquiry into the January 6, 2021 riots at the U.S. Capitol.
Last week, Hutchinson told CNN that "more voices right now in opposition or providing an alternative to Donald Trump is the best thing" for the Republican Party.
He also specifically noted in that interview that evangelical voters “are convinced that we need to have a different type of leadership in the future.”
That is the very audience Hutchinson will address during his visit to Charleston this weekend ...
ABOUT THE AUTHOR ...
Will Folks is the founding editor of the news outlet you are currently reading. Prior to founding FITSNews, he served as press secretary to the governor of South Carolina. He lives in the Midlands region of the state with his wife and seven children.
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