The 2024 general presidential election may still be more than a year away, but primary races to become the Democratic or Republican nominee are already heating up.
President Joe Biden launched his 2024 reelection bid in April, making him the obvious Democratic frontrunner, though two other candidates are vying for his spot.
Former President Donald Trump remains ahead of the pack in a growing Republican primary field, but two former governors, a senator and a wealthy entrepreneur have already made official their bids for the nomination. Several other GOP contenders are expected to join the race.
Here are all the official 2024 presidential candidates so far.
Biden officially launched his 2024 reelection bid in April, telling Americans “let’s finish this job.”
“This is not a time to be complacent,” Biden said in the three-minute video. “That’s why I’m running for reelection. Because I know America. I know we’re good and decent people. I know we’re still a country that believes in honesty and respect and treating each other with dignity.”
Although 78% of Democrats said they approve of the job Biden is doing, less than half (47%) think he should run again in 2024, according to The Associated Press-NORC Center for Public Affairs Research poll. Overall, just 26% of Americans want him to run.
His background: Biden, 80, was elected president in 2020 and is already the oldest-serving president. He would be 86 when he finishes a second term if he wins reelection. He served as vice president under former President Barack Obama from 2008 to 2016 and has held public office for more than 50 years. He was born in Scranton, Pennsylvania.
His views: Biden’s campaign is focused on the “battle for the soul of America,” doubling down on the central message of his campaign four years ago. He said the question facing the nation is “whether, in the years ahead, we have more freedom or less freedom, more rights or fewer.”
Former President Donald Trump announced in November that he would seek the presidency again in 2024 amid a flurry of legal inquiries and skepticism from other Republicans over whether he’s the right candidate for the job.
“America’s comeback starts right now,” Trump said during his speech at his Mar-a-Lago home in Palm Beach, Florida.
His background: Trump, 76, was elected president in 2016, but lost his reelection bid in 2020. He falsely claimed – and still claims – he won the election. He is the only president to be impeached twice by Congress. Before entering politics, he ran his father’s real estate company, renaming it the Trump Organization. He was born in Queens, New York.
His views: The former president has centered much of his campaign on his purported “political persecution” by Democrats. He supports securing America’s borders, “reclaiming free speech,” and “dismantling the Deep State,” according to his campaign website. He has said he would consider pardoning participants in the Jan. 6, 2021 Capitol riot, which was inspired by his false claims of election fraud.
Former U.N. ambassador Nikki Haley was the second prominent Republican to enter the 2024 presidential race after Trump, calling for a “new generation” of leaders.
“We need someone who can shake up Washington and the political class,” said Haley, who was also formerly South Carolina’s governor.
The 51-year-old candidate has touted her youth compared to other prominent figures in politics, making “mental competency tests for politicians over 75 years old” a hallmark of her campaign.
Her background: The daughter of Indian immigrants, Haley hails from Bamberg, South Carolina. Before serving as U.N. ambassador, she served as a South Carolina’s first female governor and a state legislator. Her first job at 13-years-old was keeping the books for her family’s clothing store, according to her Cabinet biography.
Her views: Haley is anti-abortion and pro-Israel. She supports cracking down on illegal immigration and “getting tough” on China and Russia. She has supported Trump in the past but also criticized him after the Jan. 6, 2021 Capitol attack.
South Carolina Sen. Tim Scott officially entered the presidential race Friday when he filed paperwork with the Federal Election Commission. He is expected to make his announcement speech Monday.
“American families are starving for hope,” Scott tweeted Thursday. “We need to have faith. Faith in God, faith in each other, and faith in America.”
The lone Black Republican in the Senate, Scott is vying to be the first African-American to win the GOP nomination.
His background: Scott grew up in North Charleston, South Carolina in a “poor, single-parent household,” according to his website.
His views: Scott joined the Senate in 2013. He’s anti-abortion and pro-Second Amendment. He says on his website that his “signature legislation,” Opportunity Zones, put $75 billion into “distressed communities” across the country.
Former Arkansas Gov. Asa Hutchinson, a Republican, launched his presidential campaign in April, emphasizing his heartland upbringing in a hometown speech.
“This campaign is about courage. It is about making the tough decisions… and we’ve got our work cut out for us,” he said.
Hutchinson has been one of Trump’s most outspoken critics in the GOP field since entering the race. A former federal prosecutor, the 72-year-old candidate urged Trump to exit the 2024 contest before he was formally charged in a New York hush-money case.
His background: Hutchinson was raised in the rural hills of Arkansas, which he said laid the groundwork for his early political awareness. Hauling hay, sacking groceries and being a janitor taught him the “dignity of work,” he said.
His views: He supports lower taxes, a strong national defense and opposing abortion. He has said the Biden administration “stood on the sidelines” in the face of crime and “turned its back on the American worker.”
Vivek Ramaswamy, a wealthy biotech entrepreneur and “anti-woke” activist, entered the 2024 presidential race in February.
The 37-year-old candidate launched his longshot bid by decrying what he called a “national identity crisis,” driven by a left-wing ideology that has replaced “faith, patriotism and hard work” with “new secular religions like COVID-ism, climate-ism and gender ideology.”
Author of the book “Woke, Inc.,” Ramaswamy centers much of his messaging around dismantling bureaucracies, whether in corporate America or Washington, D.C.
His background: The son of Indian immigrants, Ramaswamy grew up in the Cincinnati suburb of Evendale. He attended Harvard to study biology and graduated Yale Law School the same year as U.S. Sen. J.D. Vance, another southwest Ohio native.
His views: He has peddled ideas such as ending affirmative action and eliminating the Department of Education. His elevator pitch: He’ll go farther than Trump ever did or could today.
Marianne Williamson, a self-help author who unsuccessfully ran for president in 2020, launched another longshot campaign in March, becoming the first Democrat to formally challenge Biden’s reelection bid.
“We are upset about this country, we’re worried about this country,” Williamson told a crowd of more than 600 at a kickoff in Washington, D.C. “It is our job to create a vision of justice and love that is so powerful that it will override the forces of hatred and injustice and fear.”
The Democratic Party is firmly aligned behind Biden; it does not plan to hold primary debates, even if other Democrats join Williamson in challenging the president.
Her background: The 70-year-old candidate is a Texas native who now lives in Beverly Hills, California. A onetime spiritual adviser to Oprah Winfrey, Williamson has authored more than a dozen books and ran an unsuccessful independent congressional campaign in California in 2014.
Her views: Williamson is in favor of abortion rights, a single-payer health care system and reparations for the descendants of formerly enslaved Americans. She has suggested creating a U.S. Department of Children and Youth to increase child advocacy, and a U.S. Department of Peace to systemize the suppression of violence.
Robert F. Kennedy Jr.
Robert F. Kennedy Jr., an anti-vaccine activist from a storied political family, became the second Democrat to challenge Biden for the White House in April with the launch of his 2024 presidential bid.
“My mission over the next 18 months of this campaign and throughout my presidency will be to end the corrupt merger of state and corporate power that is threatening… to impose a new kind of corporate feudalism in our country,” said Kennedy.
The son of Sen. Robert F. Kennedy and nephew of former President John F. Kennedy, both assassinated in the 1960s, Kennedy has been the subject of recent controversies for criticizing COVID-19 restrictions, making anti-vaccine comments and spreading misinformation about the pandemic and vaccines.
His background: Kennedy, 69, served as an attorney for the nonprofit Natural Resources Defense Council for over three decades. He founded Waterkeeper Alliance, a network of environmental organizations advocating for clean water, and the anti-vaccine nonprofit Children’s Health Defense.
His views: He is campaigning on a platform of fighting for the “liberties guaranteed by the Constitution,” according to his campaign website.His stance on vaccines resembles those of Trump, who is running for the Republican presidential ticket in 2024.
This story will be updated as additional candidates officially enter the race.
Contributing: Ken Tran, Haley BeMiller, Associated Press
This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: Who is officially running for president in 2024? What we know