White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders may be leaving her administration position soon, but her political career might just be getting started.
President Donald Trump’s announcement of her departure last week was followed by a not-so-subtle suggestion that Sanders should run for governor of Arkansas (“she would be fantastic”), taking up the position that once belonged to her father, Mike Huckabee.
….She is a very special person with extraordinary talents, who has done an incredible job! I hope she decides to run for Governor of Arkansas – she would be fantastic. Sarah, thank you for a job well done!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) June 13, 2019
Politico reported Wednesday morning that Trump’s tweet wasn’t a spur-the-moment praise of Sanders. Instead, the two have privately been discussing her political future and a gubernatorial seat for months.
With Sanders’ departure and return to her home state, the prospects of a run are looking more and more likely. “She’s extremely serious,” one insider told Politico. Two more people close with Sanders confirmed that her running is a very real possibility.
The gubernatorial seat opens up in 2022 as current Arkansas Gov. Asa Hutchinson, a Republican, will be at the end of his term limit.
Jon Gilmore, a former campaign manager for Hutchinson, tweeted last week that the domain names SarahforArkansas.com and SarahforGovernor.com had both been bought and registered on the same day last month.
Lots of speculation in Arkansas today but it is interesting to note that these two websites were registered anonymously on the same day just last month in May. https://t.co/aC7DMBBbiJ and https://t.co/E6wnxHCPAZ #arpx #SarahHuckabeeSanders
— Jon Gilmore (@Jon_Gilmore) June 13, 2019
If that wasn’t enough, Trump brought the departing press secretary on stage at a campaign rally in Orlando, Florida Tuesday night.
“I have a feeling she’s going to be running for a certain gubernatorial position,” he said.
Watch the video below:
— Oliver McGee PhD MBA (@OliverMcGee) June 19, 2019
If Sanders does decide to run, it will be after the 2020 presidential election which will determine if her biggest supporter will continue to hold his presidential position.
In the meantime, Trump has to pick a replacement for Sanders in the White House. As IJR Red noted, possible candidates include White House press secretary Hogan Gidley, first lady Melania Trump’s communications director Stephanie Grisham, outgoing Treasury Department spokesman Tony Sayegh, and former State Department spokeswoman Heather Nauert.