“The idea of people who have business before the federal government coming and just so happening to stay at a facility that’s owned by the president — I don’t think it looks right, I don’t think it sounds right. I think it sets a bad precedent.”

Photo of Mark Sanford

Mark Sanford

Former governor and U.S. representative for the state of South Carolina

WITHDRAWN: November 12, 2019

“I think we need to have a conversation on what it means to be a Republican. I think that as the Republican Party, we have lost our way,” Sanford said in an interview announcing his candidacy on “Fox News Sunday.”

Accomplishments: Before entering politics, Sanford received an MBA from the University of Virginia and founded a leasing and brokerage company in South Carolina. He served in the U.S. House representing South Carolina from 1995 to 2001 and then was elected to two terms as governor of the state. His second term was marked by scandal when he told his staff he went to hike the Appalachian Trial, but instead traveled to Argentina to meet his mistress. Sanford returned to politics a few years later, winning his old House seat in 2013, but lost a party primary in 2018 after he was challenged by a Trump supporter.

Foreign policy: Sanford has been a critic of President Trump’s trade war with China and a long proponent of free trade. He has also expressed opposition to American intervention in foreign wars.

What sets him apart: Throughout his political career, Sanford has touted his outsider credentials and frequently criticized the amount of government spending, both on the federal and state levels. He has long been a critic of President Trump and described Trumpism last year as “a dangerous cancerous growth.” The former governor will not even be able to run in a primary in his own state after South Carolina, along with several other states, announced it would not hold a Republican presidential primary in 2020, clearing away any possible obstacles for Trump.

Platform: Sanford has said his campaign will focus on reducing government spending and the national debt. In a campaign-style video, he said that if the financial position of America is not dealt with it “could crush our economy, it could wipe out whatever we’ve saved, it could even destroy our republic.”