Where Republican contenders stand in the 2016 race
WASHINGTON (AP) — Technically, no big-name Republican has formally declared his candidacy for president in 2016.
But we now know that former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney is out, after he announced Friday that he would forgo a third presidential run.
There are as many as two dozen others still in the mix, ranging from those who are just talking about it to others with what amounts to campaigns-in-waiting.
Here’s where they stand in the off-and-running race for campaign cash.
The former Florida governor in December created political fundraising committees. Those moves accelerated the race for donors among the prospective Republican candidates, and every sign points to Bush seeking to become the third member of his family to serve as president.
The Wisconsin governor this week announced a nonprofit group, Our American Revival, that will allow him to promote his policy ideas and raise unlimited donations.
The New Jersey governor is working to turn his fundraising success as chairman of the Republican Governors Association into cash for a possible presidential campaign. Christie moved toward a run this week with the formation of Leadership Matters for America, a political action committee.
The Kentucky senator has his Senate leadership committee, RANDPAC, up and running — with staff in crucial early-voting presidential states. Paul has used it to pay for his travel around the country, as well as to pay aides and consultants who would form the backbone of a presidential campaign.
The senator from Florida is using Reclaim America, his federal leadership political action committee, to lay the groundwork for a campaign. Rubio spent this week away from Washington, lining up donors in California, Texas and Illinois for a likely presidential run.
The tea party firebrand has used his federal leadership PAC, the Jobs, Growth and Freedom Fund, to advance his national political brand. The senator from Texas also has earned allies — and favors — throughout the conservative movement by helping outside organizations raise money.
The senior senator from South Carolina this week announced he had formed Security Through Strength, a campaign-like committee that will allow him to gauge interest in a potential White House bid. He also continues to operate a Senate leadership committee, the Fund for America’s Future.
The former Texas governor started a federal political committee last year to help him support candidates and allies. Perry initially proved a skilled fundraiser during his 2012 bid, but the money dried up after his high-profile stumbles.
The former Arkansas governor recently stepped down from his post with Fox News to more seriously weigh a presidential bid. He has also has used his political committee, Huck PAC, to keep involved in campaigns.
After dropping out of the 2012 presidential race, the former senator from Pennsylvania formed the nonprofit Patriot Voices to help him keep in touch with supporters, as well as a sister PAC with the same name.
The Louisiana governor’s Stand Up to Washington PAC is his federal campaign effort, although it has not been a priority for him. Jindal recently has been courting pastors and trying to build his national security credentials with fiery speeches against radical Islam.
The retired pediatric neurosurgeon has developed a fervent following among conservatives, but he has never served in elected office. He has helped the anti-Obamacare American Legacy PAC raise cash, and several independent committees have sprung up to support him if he should run.
The 2008 vice presidential nominee and former Alaska governor recently fanned speculation that she might seek the Republican nomination in 2016. She has used her SarahPAC — along with her reality television programs and Fox News appearances — to keep her name in the mix and to pay for travel to campaign rallies with allies.
Other candidates include former California Gov. Carly Fiorina, former New York Gov. George Pataki, former U.N. ambassador John Bolton, congressman Peter King, governors Mike Pence, John Kasich and Rick Snyder.
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