- After giving what many considered a knockout speech at the 2012 Republican National Convention, former Secretary of State and noted foreign policy buff Condoleezza Rice was thrust back into the spotlight as a potential contender for the White House in 2016. But the question is more so whether Rice actually wants to be president or in any form of elected office, for that matter. She has made clear in the past that she prefers policy — not politics. And her personal stance on issues (most notably the fact that she is pro-choice) could instantly cripple her chances to the get the backing needed for an Oval Office run.
- The brazen governor of New Jersey was a leading presidential hopeful among members of the GOP before Mitt Romney clinched the party's nomination. Christie's favorability among independents could make a 2016 ticket with his name on it even more plausible. His praise of Barack Obama's handling of Hurricane Sandy, however, was heavily politicized and turned some conservatives against him. Before his speech at the Republican National Convention, the governor was interviewed about his foresight in 2016 and said: "If there's an opportunity for me to serve in another capacity and I think I have something to add to the mix, I don't think I'd back away from it."
- In June, Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker became the first governor in the history of the United States to survive a recall election after he was challenged by Mayor Tom Barrett of Milwaukee. Walker's signing of a hotly contested law would have ended collective bargaining for public employees in his state. Though the ruling was declared unconstitutional, Walker's survival as a governor signaled his value and staying power to Republicans. But Walker has legal issues and a "love him or hate him" stamp to shake before a presidential bid could turn into a reality.
- After voting in the presidential election on Tuesday, Vice President Joe Biden was approached by a reporter who asked if he thought this was the last time he would vote for himself. Grinning, Biden responded simply: "No, I don't think so." Immediately, speculation circulated that he was hinting at a run for office in the future. Since 2008, Biden's role as vice president has been something of a liaison-in-chief — bridging the gap between Obama's federal projects and mayors and governors across the country, making him poised to understand the Democratic push for the future.
- First things first: Clinton has very clearly stated that she currently does not have plans to run for president. "I want to just be my own person. I'm looking forward to that," she said in an interview with Marie Claire about her life post-secretary of state. But as one of the most high profile Obama administration officials and a well-received diplomat abroad, Clinton's experience arsenal compared with her Democratic colleagues is not to be ignored. She has years of exposure and high approval ratings under her belt — not to mention campaign fundraising experience to boot.
- Gov. Andrew Cuomo of New York state has kept a relatively low profile on the national political stage, unlike his counterparts in the Democratic party who have 2016 election buzz around them. And that profile could be spun either way: some might view Cuomo's stalwart focus on his role as a governor as a show of commitment to his duty. Others might paint it as Cuomo's way of answering pundits and speculators with an unabated "no." "My job is being governor of the state of New York, and that's a job that's done in the state of New York," he said recently. But Cuomo's handling of environmental issues like hydraulic fracturing and economic issues places him in a sweet spot in the eyes of his party.