The man who represented Livingston County in Congress for more than a decade is potentially dipping his toe in the waters of a run for the White House.
Former Congressman Mike Rogers, who grew up in Brighton and lived in Howell for many years, was recently spotted at the Iowa State Fair with speculation that it is the necessary first step in garnering support for precinct delegates who will vote in Iowa’s first-in-the-nation presidential caucuses in 2024.
In fact, The Detroit News says it was Rogers’ third trip to Iowa this summer, with a second visit to South Carolina on the schedule, as well as New Hampshire this October, three other critical early voting states.
Officially, the 59-year-old Rogers said he was in Iowa and the other states on behalf of his nonprofit, Leading to Ensure the American Dream (LEAD), an organization that bills itself as trying to create “a platform to address the complex issues we must face as families, communities, states, and as a country that impacts the American Dream above the political crossfire.”
However, a source close to Rogers told The Detroit News that the former Congressman, who represented the 8th District from 2001 to 2015, has serious ambitions for the White House.
“He’s in Iowa as part of the courtship, or really pre-courtship of caucus voters,” the source told the paper, adding that Rogers has met with the nation’s top Republican influencers and is encouraged by their response. “At this point it’s about getting acquainted, sending a signal that you’re going to be around.”
Rogers, who gained national prominence as chair of the House Intelligence Committee during the height of wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, has maintained his spot in the public eye as a regular guest on CNN as a national security expert. He also runs a highly successful consulting business from Florida.
While his CNN stint has not endeared him to supporters of Donald Trump, he has not been a vocal opponent of the former president and is not considered a never-Trumper like Rep. Liz Cheney (R-WY). However, he has not indulged in the wildly untrue claims of a stolen election so prominent among Republicans in office and those seeking election. Rogers has also not been afraid to call out decisions and policies during the Trump Administration that he felt were contrary to America’s national security interests, especially those pertaining to Russia.
Rogers also believes that Trump’s blessing will not be the final say on who gets the GOP nomination in 2024.
“The power in 2024 will be with candidates who move to their own positions of what America should look like,” he told the paper. “I don’t think any endorsement is going to change the fate of any candidate.”