You may have missed it in the tumult of Syria coverage, but Rep. Peter King announced this weekend that he is running for president.
In an interview this week, the Republican lawmaker from New York who’s perhaps best known for protecting America from scary ” radicalized Muslims,” told a New Hampshire radio station that he was in the state “because right now I’m running for president,” according to the New York Daily News.
King has been trying to generate buzz around the idea since at least as early as July, when he sent an e-mail to supporters saying he’d been “floated” as a possible presidential pick by prominent members of his party.
The announcement makes King the first Republican to officially declare his intentions to run for president in 2016. It also puts him in the dubious company of a whole host of other candidates who, as Wonkette put it, were first to shout “First!” in the proverbial chat room of presidential elections.
For your viewing pleasure, National Journal has compiled a recent rundown of other candidates to declare earliest in recent years.
The first Republican to announce that year was longtime political activist and campaign consultant Fred Karger. Ever heard of him? Neither have we. But Tyler Kingkade wrote about him and he sounds like a nice guy.
John Cox, a “Ronald Reagan-style Republican,” announced his candidacy after ” getting a standing ovation when he outlined how he will solve the illegal-alien debacle.” Ever heard of him? Thought not.
The first Democrat to announce that year was then-Iowa Gov. Tom Vilsack. We’re guessing you have heard of him. Gallup polls placed Vilsack at 1 percent in December of 2006. It fell to 0 percent on Jan. 7, where it remained until his he withdrew from the race. He is now the secretary of Agriculture.
To recall the 2004 presidential election is to recall Howard Dean. And indeed, he was the first to announce his candidacy. Dean, if you remember, polled in first place throughout much of the presidential primary, occasionally polling second to Dick Gephardt. But we all know how that ended.
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The Commission on Presidential Debates put out a statement today that gives credence to Donald Trump's claims that he had a bad microphone on Monday night. "Regarding the first debate, there were issues regarding Donald Trump's audio that affected the sound level in the debate hall," read the statement in its entirety.
"A video of Donald Trump testifying under oath about his provocative rhetoric about Mexicans and other Latinos is set to go public" as soon as today. "Trump gave the testimony in June at a law office in Washington in connection with one of two lawsuits he filed last year after prominent chefs reacted to the controversy over his remarks by pulling out of plans to open restaurants at his new D.C. hotel. D.C. Superior Court Judge Brian Holeman said in an order issued Thursday evening that fears the testimony might show up in campaign commercials were no basis to keep the public from seeing the video."
No matter that his recall of foreign leaders leaves something to be desired, Gary Johnson is the choice of the Chicago Tribune's editorial board. The editors argue that Donald Trump couldn't do the job of president, while hitting Hillary Clinton for "her intent to greatly increase federal spending and taxation, and serious questions about honesty and trust." Which leaves them with Johnson. "Every American who casts a vote for him is standing for principles," they write, "and can be proud of that vote. Yes, proud of a candidate in 2016."
Speaking at the funeral of former Israeli Prime Minister Shimon Peres, President Obama "compared Peres to 'other giants of the 20th century' such as Nelson Mandela and Queen Elizabeth who 'find no need to posture or traffic in what's popular in the moment.'" Among the 6,000 mourners at the service was Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas. Obama called Abbas's presence a sign of the "unfinished business of peace" in the region.