As the 2022 midterm elections are quickly approaching, the 2024 presidential election season will follow soon after.
Candidates will likely start announcing their intentions to run for president within months of this November’s Election Day, or possibly sooner. Several potential candidates, including President Biden and former President Trump, have hinted or discussed being open to making runs for the White House in two years.
Beyond the two major political parties, a number of politicians and celebrities have signaled or directly said they are contemplating runs as independents.
While independent candidates would be long shots to win the presidency, history has shown that they can play key roles in the outcome of the race, such as with Ross Perot in 1992 and Ralph Nader in 2000.
Here are five potential independent candidates who appear most likely to run for president in 2024:
Rep. Liz Cheney (R-Wyo.) most recently fueled discussion of her making an independent run for the presidency last weekend when she said she will not remain a member of the Republican Party if Trump becomes the GOP nominee in 2024.
Cheney, the daughter of former Vice President Dick Cheney, has seen her influence in the Republican Party decline precipitously since she condemned Trump for his role in the Jan. 6, 2021, insurrection and his efforts to overturn the results of the 2020 presidential election.
Cheney was once seen as a possible candidate for Speaker but was removed from her position as GOP conference chair in May 2021 in response to her unwillingness to join most of her Republican colleagues in saying that the 2020 election was stolen.
Her loss in the Republican primary for her House seat to Trump-backed candidate Harriet Hageman is set to end her time in Congress, but her concession speech signaled Cheney may not be finished in politics.
Cheney promised to do “whatever it takes” to prevent Trump from returning to the White House. She also said “now the real work begins,” given that her primary race is over, and referenced former presidents Abraham Lincoln and Ulysses Grant, who worked to keep the country together during the Civil War.
Cheney said after her loss that she is “thinking about” running in 2024, but did not clarify if it would be in the GOP primary or as an independent.
A Yahoo News-YouGov poll from August showed an independent run from Cheney could hurt Biden more than Trump in a 2020 rematch. Biden led Trump in the poll by 4 points without Cheney but trailed by 8 points with her as an independent candidate.
Andrew Yang, the businessman and former 2020 Democratic presidential candidate, made news in October 2021 when he announced he was leaving the Democratic Party to become an independent. He founded a third party, known as the Forward Party, later that month.
Speculation about Yang’s presidential aspirations rose more recently in July when he announced he was joining forces with the Renew America Movement, made up of former Republican officials, and the Serve America Movement, comprised of Democrats, Republicans and independents, to come together behind the Forward Party.
Yang has been promoting the party as a center alternative to the two major, mainstream political parties, both of which he has said have become too extreme. The party platform focuses on finding common ground and uniting the country.
Yang said in an interview with CNN’s Jim Acosta after announcing the merger that he does not want to do “anything” to potentially increase Trump’s chances of returning to the White House. But he said he has not made “any conclusions” about the 2024 race except that the United States needs a unifying third-party movement as polarization expands across the country.
He said the party takes “not left or right but forward” positions on the issues facing the country.
Radio host Howard Stern announced in late June on his radio talk show, “The Howard Stern Show,” that he was considering running for president in 2024. He said he would run if Trump becomes the Republican nominee.
He said an issue with most presidents is they have too large of an agenda, but his goal would be to make the country “fair” again. He said the first priority would be to eliminate the Electoral College.
Stern said he would also appoint five additional Supreme Court justices. He said on a later show that he would want actor Bradley Cooper to serve as his running mate.
Ye, the rapper formerly known as Kanye West, made a long-shot bid for the presidency in 2020 and he may try again. He said in an interview with ABC last month that he has future political aspirations.
He has been a supporter of Trump in the past. He ran under the banner of the Birthday Party but did not make the ballot in most states and did not impact the outcome of any state.
He tweeted the day after the 2020 election that he was looking ahead to the next presidential race, saying, “Kanye 2024.”
Actor Dwayne Johnson has hinted over the past several years about possibly running for president one day. He said he was considering it as early as 2016, tweeting out a piece from a news outlet about why he should run.
He said in an interview with USA Today in 2017 that he was “seriously considering” running in 2020 but ultimately decided against it. He said in the interview that his interest in running comes from a “large amount of people” who want to see him run.
“But I mean, honestly, there are so many different variables that have to come into play when you think about this,” Johnson said. “Politics is not my business. So the consideration is there. And we’ll just have to see. I’ll continue to watch and learn as much as I can.”
He said his goal would be to “serve the people.”
Johnson told Variety later in 2017 that 2024 would be the “realistic consideration.”