White House press secretary Sarah Sanders looks to President Donald Trump as she speaks during an event on second chance hiring in the East Room of the White House, Thursday, June 13, 2019, in Washington. Sanders is leaving her job at the end of the month. (AP Photo/Evan Vucci)

Sarah Sanders speculation shakes up Arkansas governor's race

June 14, 2019 - 4:42 pm

LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (AP) — Speculation that White House Press Secretary Sarah Sanders could run for governor in her home state of Arkansas is shaking up a race three years away that was already expected to attract a crowd of Republican candidates.

President Donald Trump encouraged Sanders to run for governor when he announced her departure as press secretary on Thursday. Republican Gov. Asa Hutchinson was re-elected in November and the seat will open up in 2022 when he's barred by term limits from running again.

Sanders hasn't ruled out running for office when she returns to Arkansas. GOP leaders in the state say she has strong name recognition and connections. Her father is former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee.

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