Hidden Motives Behind the Huge GOP Primary

There Are Many Reasons to Run for President

On Monday, former Virginia Governor Jim Gilmore became the 17th Republican to announce he's running for president. Not ten, not twelve -- seventeen declared candidates, and there may be one or two more in the next few months. With such a broad field, many candidates simply do not have a chance of actually winning the race. One of the long shots might win, but their decision to run could be based on other factors.

2016 seemingly presents a perfect opportunity for a Republican win. Polls indicate more than half of Americans disapprove of Barack Obama’s job as president, and a majority dislike his signature policy -- Obamacare. The Democratic heir apparent, Hillary Clinton, enjoys nearly universal name recognition, but has negative favorability ratings -- people just don’t like her. In key states, she ranks near the bottom on favorability -- behind only Donald Trump as the least liked.

The latest polls show Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker, Florida Senator Marco Rubio, and former Florida Governor Jeb Bush all beating Clinton in key swing states -- Colorado, New Hampshire, and Iowa. In Colorado, Walker beats her by 9 points.

But these are only 3 of the 16 Republicans running for president. Why is the roster so large? Furthermore, why are qualified governors and former governors like Bobby Jindal, John Kasich, Rick Perry, Chris Christie, Jim Gilmore, and George Pataki running -- when none of them has as much as 3 percent in national polls?

New Hampshire voters may consider this an “embarrassment of riches,” but when a popular Midwest governor of an important swing state like Ohio can only manage 1.8 percent of the vote, and still decides to run, you know something fishy is going on. Many of these candidates may still be running to win -- but also to gain something else.