Virginia Gov. Glenn Youngkin says no to presidential run in 2023

Governor Youngkin Meets With Constituents In Virginia
Virginia Governor Glenn Youngkin answers questions from members of the media after touring an H Mart supermarket while meeting with Asian community leaders on April 06, 2023 in Fairfax, Virginia.  Win McNamee / Getty Images

Virginia Governor Glenn Youngkin responded to speculation about a potential 2024 presidential run Monday with a simple “no” when he was asked about returning to the campaign trail later this year.

The governor was participating in a talk at the Milken Institute with Wall Street Journal editor-at-large Gerard Baker, who asked Youngkin if he planned to dust off his signature fleece vest and launch a presidential campaign.

“I’m going to be working in Virginia this year,” Youngkin replied, citing the Virginia state House and Senate races coming this November. Republicans currently control the House of Delegates and would like to flip the state Senate, which is controlled by Democrats.

“I haven’t written a book; I’m not in Iowa,” the governor said. “I’m spending time representing Virginia this year.”

This is the first time that Youngkin — who arrived at the California event from a trip to Taiwan, Japan and South Korea — has given an answer to questions about whether he had any plans to run for president.

In response, Youngkin Spokesperson Macaulay Porter told NBC News the governor was commenting on his 2023 plans and that the questions posed to him were “directly asked about this year.” Another Youngkin aid added not to count him out for 2024 just yet.

Youngkin declined to rule out a run in July last year in an interview with CBS News chief election & campaign correspondent Robert Costa on “Face the Nation.” At the time, he acknowledged being “hugely humbled by this discussion” that he might run for president and didn’t deny that some Republican donors had approached him.

He chalked up the attention to “the fact that I won in a state that was blue, and we turned it red,” adding, I ran on a platform that we’re delivering.”

But at the time, he told Costa he felt his job was to be “a great governor of Virginia.”

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