As the waiting game continues on whether Donald Trump will run for president again, and on who else may join that GOP candidate pool, one potential contender has taken his name out of the running. Sources tell Politico and CNN that Arkansas Sen. Tom Cotton has, over the past few days, been informing donors, high-ranking Republicans, and other supporters that he won't be throwing his hat in the 2024 ring. He reportedly has declined to do so because he doesn't want the grind of such a campaign to pull him away from his two young boys, who are 5 and 7.
Both Politico and CNN note that Cotton is the first high-profile Republican to shy away from a run—though soon after the midterms are over, other possible candidates will likely start fielding their own inquiries and making their own decisions public. Cotton, described by CBS News as "one of the Republican Party's rising stars," was elected to the US Senate in 2014, with reelection in 2020. An Afghanistan and Iraq war veteran, Cotton has released a book on military history that Politico notes "bolstered his national profile," and he's since been an avid promoter of policy that's "tough on crime," per CBS.
He's even taken recent trips to Iowa and New Hampshire, where the GOP's first presidential primaries are held, and raised nearly $8 million since 2017 that could've been funneled into a presidential campaign. Cotton's Oval Office ambitions temporarily aside, he apparently isn't against taking on an administration role if a GOP candidate wins the presidency, according to sources who say the senator has been suggesting just that to those in his inner circle. (Read more Tom Cotton stories.)