So, Uh, Mitt Romney is NOT Running for President Again

Mitt Romney.

There’s no more need to try to re-invent Romney. Again.

According to The Washington Post, two-time Republican Presidental candidate Mitt Romney will NOT run for President for a third time:

“After putting considerable thought into making another run for president, I’ve decided it is best to give other leaders in the party the opportunity to become our next nominee,” Romney said in a statement he read to supporters on a conference call Friday morning.

Romney insisted that he would have had enough support from potential donors to be “more than competitive” and that the positive reaction he heard from Republican activists was “surprising and heartening.” He noted that he led the GOP field in recent public polls…

…Romney’s decision to forgo a third run came after a lengthy meeting of Romney’s inner circle in Boston last Friday, during which they evaluated feedback from former campaign donors and activists in key early voting states. The assessment was realistic — “we were not Pollyanaish,” one adviser said — and included reports from Iowa, New Hampshire and South Carolina, where Romney would have lost some key precinct leaders although still had considerable support.

Many participants left that session convinced that it was all but certain he would run again. In the end, however, Romney balked. One person close to the family said he made up his mind last weekend, but wanted to give himself the week to think it over before making his decision final.

“It’s a very personal decision,” said a senior adviser, who like others interviewed requested anonymity to speak candidly. “All the political metrics were positive. Ultimately, running for president, you just have to feel right about it in your heart. They just didn’t feel it was right. He’s a happy person. He’s not a needy, desperate guy.”

It sounds like Romney more or less concluded that he just didn't really want to do the thing for 2016, so why was he spending so much time recently keeping his name in the mix? Apparently he just really believes that former Florida Governor Jeb Bush should not be the GOP nominee in 2016, so Romney's ultimate goal was to poop in Bush's punch bowl for awhile. As our friends at "The Fix" explained:

"I believe that one of our next generation of Republican leaders, one who may not be as well known as I am today, one who has not yet taken their message across the country, one who is just getting started, may well emerge as being better able to defeat the Democrat nominee," [said Romney].

That second sentence is key to not only understanding Romney's thinking about his own candidacy (or lack thereof) but also how he feels about the race more generally. His motivation to re-consider his past denials of interest in a third race seemed designed to slow the momentum being built by former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush. The two men have a testy relationship and Romney has made clear privately and in kinder terms publicly that he didn't think Jeb was the right choice for the party.

Romney's consideration of the race over the intervening three weeks was entirely tied up with Bush and his own plans. It was huge news — in the political world — when, on Thursday, Dave Kochel, a longtime Romney adviser, signed on with Bush to be his campaign manager. The entire conversation over the past 21 days was whether, with Jeb and Mitt in the race, there would be room for any of the "new" faces in the party like Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker or Florida Gov. Marco Rubio (or even New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie).

Take that, Jeb! Who's next?

22 Community Comments, Facebook Comments

  1. DawnPatrol says:

    Too big a lift, even for all of the car elevators in all of his palatial estates.

    But he was really really serious this time about helping the poor and middle class! He told me so! So are all the other GOTP psycho nutjobs running for Prez! Just ask them! They absolutely LOVE the poor and downtrodden! No, really!

    • BlueCat says:

      Don't laugh. If that's the message (we care deeply about the takers, I mean low to middle income and poor people), they're very good at aggressive messaging and Dems are very bad at going on offense for fear of not looking "middle'" or "not lefty", "bipartisan" enough. Remember, most people don't pay enough attention to know that the etch-a sketch message du jour is a radical departure from any past incarnations or from the candidate's record. They don't know a candidate is shaking the etch-a-sketch unless some dumb op comes right out and says so.

  2. davebarnes says:

    Bush: Third Time's the Charm.

    Seriously, who else is there?
    So many names http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Republican_Party_presidential_candidates,_2016 and so many "not going to happen".

  3. FrankUnderwood says:

    This makes it more likely that an est Repub wins the nod since now there will only be Christie and Jebby running against a gaggle of nutters. The nutter will split the base allowing a “moderate” est-type to win nod.

  4. itlduso says:

    The deck is cleared for Jeb (since Christie will be in jail this time next year). Jeb will win FL and all the remaining big states. Hillary had better be prepared.

    • DawnPatrol says:

      Like her or not, Hillary is a Clinton and a Scorpio, and not bloody likely to repeat her mistakes of 2008. She'll be prepared, whoever turns out to be the final driver of the 2016 GOP clown car,

      • taterheaptom says:

        Please God, kill me now.  No More Clintons.  No More Bushes.  No More.

        • BlueCat says:

          I think the HRC freight train can't be stopped. So it's gonna be back to the future whether we like it or not. I don't. I didn't appreciate HRC's claims to being an unelected co-President back when Bill came into office. Sorry if she didn't like being First Lady but that's all you get for being married to the President and not elected to anything.

          Didn't see her as any kind of feminist icon as all of her political clout came from marrying the right guy and sticking with him even though he could never keep his pants zipped and humiliated her in public repeatedly. I'd have cut them off and fed them to him. 

          I didn't support HRC in 2008. She briefly appealed to me as I saw her doing a decent loyal job as SOS. The second she left that office all the old Clinton animosity toward Obama, who supposedly robbed her of the presidency she thought was hers by right, quickly resurfaced.  

          I've really tried to be a supporter of HRC for Prez. I do think it's high time for our first woman in that office. But I think she's wrong for 2016 . She belongs too much to a past the Dem party needs to move on from. The Clintons and Bushes both need to get out of the way. But I guess it's going to be HRC and I'll just have to get ued to it.

        • Diogenesdemar says:

          +1,000,000,000,000,000,000,000!

          . . . not for killing you THT, just willing to join you in any suicide pact on this one.  Maybe there'll be a asteroid strike, or Yellowstone will blow, or we'll get somehow lucky another way???

      • FrankUnderwood says:

        Agreed……that's one of the things I admire and respect about the Clintons.  They don't like to lose.  And they rarely let that happen.  They under-estimated Obama's appeal to voters in the primaries in 2008.  They won't let that happen again.  And they have experience running against Bushes.  Set up the war room and the rapid response team!

  5. Progressicat says:

    Here's a twist.  Failed 2012 candidate Romney said to personally dislike Jeb – and has signalled that he may yet back Christie for 2016, because ‘a Bush can’t beat a Clinton’

    http://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2015/jan/30/romney-jeb-bush-christie-republicans-white-house

  6. Diogenesdemar says:

    Damn!  Just when I was beginning to think I might want to vote for a completely out of touch, tax-avoiding,  multi-millionaire, child of privilege, 1%er corporatist tool . . . 

    . . . come back Willard!  2016's your year big guy!  Don't abandon us now!  Believe in America, buddy!

  7. debbielynnepaint says:

    I loved what BiIll Maher said on his show last night. He said Romney's doctor had advised him not to run because if he ran it would be really bad for his heart because of the added stress to his heart by pretending to care for the poor.

  8. skeptical citizen says:

    Mitt was the most Presidential-looking candidate in many years, better than many Hollywood-cast Presidents, IMHO. I'll miss the Etch-a-Sketch.

  9. flatiron says:

    I fear a Walker-Rubio ticket but a Bush-Walker ticket is most likely. In a choice of two retreads, the woman beats the brother of the worst president ever.

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