Gov. Doug Burgum (R-ND) is weighing a “likely” presidential bid that poses to further widen an already deep Republican primary field, according to CBS News.
As the outlet’s Fin Gómez reported:
CBS News has learned that North Dakota Gov. Doug Burgum is nearing a decision to launch a dark-horse bid for the White House, and has begun hiring political consultants who have advised previous Republican presidential campaigns, according to GOP sources familiar with the planning.
Burgum is expected to make a decision within the next couple weeks, the sources say.
The report comes on the heels of Burgum’s comments that surfaced in the Forum, a North Dakota newspaper, this week. He indicated that consideration about 2024 was “next,” following the end of the state’s legislative session.
Before running a successful 2016 gubernatorial campaign and winning reelection in 2020, Burgum was a venture capitalist and tech executive, as Forbes noted. He was an early investor in Great Plains Software and eventually served as its CEO before it sold to Microsoft in 2001. Bergram then became head of Microsoft Business Solutions, the Forum previously reported.
Microsoft CEO Bill Gates was a notable contributor to Burgum’s 2016 campaign, according to the outlet, and he scored the endorsement of then-Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella, who worked under him at the company.
Burgum, who used his own wealth to help fund his gubernatorial campaigns, “would rely on his extensive personal wealth and financial network in a presidential campaign, according to Republican sources,” CBS noted, adding that he would join “former President Trump and former biotech entrepreneur Vivek Ramaswamy as the wealthiest Republican contenders” if he jumped in the race.
His “likely” presidential bid comes as five candidates – Trump, former Gov Nikki Haley (R-SC), Ramaswamy, former Gov. Asa Hutchinson (R-AR), and conservative talk show host Larry Elder – have officially entered the GOP field. Other potential candidates, including Gov. Ron DeSantis (R-FL), Sen. Tim Scott (R-SC), and former Vice President Mike Pence, continue to mull bids.