In a potential electoral upset that could have far-reaching implications, a No Labels party candidate could emerge as a formidable force in the 2024 presidential race. With the country divided and dissatisfied with the two major parties, the No Labels candidate could secure an impressive 131 electoral votes, shaking the foundation of the American political landscape.
No Labels, a political organization dedicated to promoting bipartisanship and centrist policies, had previously hinted at the possibility of fielding its own presidential candidate if it deemed the major parties' nominees unacceptable. Their entry into the race has the potential to disrupt the electoral strategies of both the Democrats and Republicans, thereby impacting President Joe Biden's chances of reelection. So far they have been seeing courting West Virginia Senator Joe Manchin, former Hawaii Congress Member Tulsi Gabbard, Maryland Governor Larry Hogan, Utah Senator Mitt Romney, Alaska Senator Lisa Murkowski, Arizona Senator Kyrsten Sinema, New Jersey Congress Member Josh Gottheimer, and former Ohio Governor John Kasich.
While it remains unclear who the No Labels candidate might be or how popular and viable they would be on a national scale, certain factors suggest they could perform well in specific states. States that are relatively moderate or independent in their political leanings, such as Alaska, Colorado, Maine, Minnesota, New Hampshire, and Nevada, could be fertile ground for a No Labels candidate. Additionally, states like Arizona, Florida, Georgia, Pennsylvania, and Wisconsin, which have shown dissatisfaction with the performance or policies of both Biden and former President Trump, may be receptive to an alternative option.
Moreover, states open to alternative voting systems or ballot access rules, such as Alaska, Arizona, Colorado, and Oregon, could provide the No Labels candidate with a favorable environment. For instance, Alaska's adoption of ranked-choice voting in 2020 and Arizona's allowance of online signature collection could facilitate the party's campaign efforts.
However, it is essential to recognize that these scenarios are purely hypothetical, and the outcome of the 2024 election will be influenced by numerous factors. The state of the economy, the handling of the ongoing pandemic, foreign policy decisions, immigration policies, social issues, and voter turnout will all play a crucial role in determining the election's outcome.
No Labels faces significant challenges and criticism from both Democrats and Republicans, who accuse the organization of being secretive, disruptive, self-serving, or unrealistic. The party has yet to secure ballot access in all 50 states, and critical information such as their donors and campaign budget for 2024 remain undisclosed. It is not known if they will be able to match the fundraising efforts of either Biden or Trump. Trump has already reached $1.2 billion and while Biden has only reached a little over $200 million his campaign staff have told the media they are projecting to meet Trump's $1 billion mark by election day. These factors make it too early to predict the level of success or influence a No Labels candidate could achieve.
In a three-way presidential contest, securing a majority of the electoral votes is crucial for victory. A candidate must obtain at least 270 out of the 538 total electoral votes. If no candidate reaches this threshold, the House of Representatives will select the president from the three candidates who received the most electoral college votes, with each state delegation receiving only one vote. Simultaneously, the Senate will elect the vice-president from the remaining top two candidates, with each senator casting one vote.
While this scenario has occurred only once in U.S. history, in 1824, it holds the potential to repeat itself in 2024 if a No Labels candidate splits the vote between Biden and Trump (or their respective party nominees). Such a division could prevent any candidate from reaching the 270 threshold required to win the presidency outright.
In this event, the House of Representatives would assume the responsibility of electing the president. Each state delegation, regardless of size, population or majority party, would receive only one vote. To become president, a candidate must secure the support of 26 state delegations. Meanwhile, the Senate would elect the vice-president from the top two candidates, with each senator casting one vote. This setup opens the possibility of a president and vice-president from different parties. The last time this happened was in 1796. A quorum for the purpose of Congress choosing the next president requires the presences of at least 2/3rds of the states in the US Congress.
The emergence of a strong No Labels candidate and a potential split in the electoral votes could lead to a nail-biting and historic showdown in the House of Representatives. The influence and voting decisions of state delegations would become critical in determining the next president of the United States.
As the 2024 presidential election draws nearer, the political landscape remains unpredictable. The entry of a No Labels candidate adds an intriguing dimension to an already complex race. Whether this candidate's popularity and viability will endure, and the ultimate impact they will have on the election, remains to be seen.