Though the massive 2020 Democratic field raised the bar for the number of same-state candidates
With Francis Suarez (pictured) entering the race for the 2024 Republican presidential nomination this week, the Miami mayor becomes the third resident from the state of Florida to seek the GOP nod this cycle, joining former President Donald Trump and Governor Ron DeSantis.
This is the first cycle during the modern primary era in which three candidates from the same state will vie for the Republican nomination.
In fact, from 1972 through 2016, no state had produced three candidates running for the same major party nomination on either the Democratic or the Republican side.
That ended, of course, in 2020 when nearly 30 Democratic candidates entered the race producing five sets of same-state hopefuls, including three states with three or more candidates:
- California had at least four with U.S. Senator Kamala Harris, U.S. Representative Eric Swalwell, author Marianne Williamson, and businessman Tom Steyer. Former Alaska U.S. Senator Mike Gravel was also a California resident during his quasi lark of a campaign.
- New York, meanwhile, produced four candidates: U.S. Senator Kirsten Gillibrand, entrepreneur Andrew Yang, businessman and media mogul Michael Bloomberg, and New York Mayor Bill de Blasio.
- Massachusetts churned out three candidates: U.S. Senator Elizabeth Warren, former Governor Deval Patrick, and U.S. Representative Seth Moulton.
- Colorado offered up U.S. Senator Michael Bennet and former Governor John Hickenlooper.
- Texas also supplied the field with a couple of former officeholders – ex-U.S. Representative Beto O’Rourke and former San Antonio Mayor (and HUD Secretary) Julian Castro.
It should be noted this is not the first time three Republicans from the same state have been involved in a presidential race, but one has to look back prior to the modern primary era.
For example, in 1916, three Republicans from New York were among the top vote-getters in initial convention balloting.
Supreme Court Justice (and eventual nominee) Charles Evans Hughes led on all rounds of balloting with former New York U.S. Senator Elihu Root placing second on the second round of balloting with 98.5 votes and former President Teddy Roosevelt coming in fifth in the second round with 81 votes.
The 1940 election cycle also saw three New Yorkers receive support at the GOP convention – lawyer Wendell Willkie was the eventual nominee, Manhattan District Attorney Thomas Dewey led on the first three rounds of balloting, and publisher Frank Gannett ran seventh on the second ballot with 30 votes.
Since 1972, there have been at least two states with two or more candidates vying for the same major party presidential nomination in nine of these 14 cycles.
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