Former MA Gov. Bill Weld Becomes Trump’s First Official Primary Challenger

David Krayden | Ottawa Bureau Chief

Former Massachusetts Republican Gov. Bill Weld hopes to replace President Donald Trump as President of the United States.

Weld confirmed Friday that he is initiating a presidential committee to consider running against Trump as a Republican candidate, Fox News reports.

Libertarian vice presidential candidate Bill Weld takes a selfie with a supporter at a rally in New York, U.S., September 10, 2016. REUTERS/Mark Kauzlarich

Libertarian vice presidential candidate Bill Weld takes a selfie with a supporter at a rally in New York, U.S., Sept. 10, 2016. REUTERS/Mark Kauzlarich

Weld, the first Republican to openly admit he wants to run against Trump, spoke of his ambition on Friday at the New England Council’s “Politics and Eggs” series, where potential candidates hoping to put their name on the New Hampshire ballot must begin. (RELATED: Weld At Odds With Johnson On Terror Watch List Gun Ban)

“I think there definitely is a path to victory, but you want to test the market a bit. I look forward to talking to a variety of people. You want to make sure the motion doesn’t fail for lack of a second but it won’t,” Weld told the New Hampshire Union Leader Thursday. “Everyone I have talked to says you are running as an R, count me in.”

Fox News first reported Wednesday that Trump critic Weld would be announcing his bid to run against the president.

Weld served two terms as Massachusetts governor before becoming a Libertarian Party vice presidential nominee in 2016, along with running mate Gary Johnson, who was endorsed by marijuana activists for his pro-pot stance. He recently renewed his membership in the Republican Party. (Libertarian VP Candidate’s Past Stances At Odds With Libertarianism)

Not only does Weld face the daunting task of improving his recognition among Republican faithful; he faces an incumbent president who is overwhelmingly popular with party voters. Former Ohio Republican Gov. John Kasich has also publicly mulled his prospects of toppling Trump as a third-party candidate.

Ohio Governor and former presidential candidate John Kasich speaks to the press in Concord, New Hampshire, U.S., November 15, 2018. REUTERS/Elizabeth Frantz

Ohio Governor and former presidential candidate John Kasich speaks to the press in Concord, New Hampshire, U.S., Nov. 15, 2018. REUTERS/Elizabeth Frantz

The New Hampshire GOP is not extolling Weld’s candidacy.

“He ran as a Libertarian vice presidential candidate in 2016. As far as we’re concerned, he’s a Libertarian, and he can’t flip-flop back and forth for political expediency,” state party Chairman Steve Stepanek told Fox News recently. “We don’t consider him a Republican. We don’t want him back as a Republican.”

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Tags : presidential campaign bill weld donald trump john kasich
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