Mitt Romney

Why Would Anyone Want Mitt Romney to Run for President in 2016?



Today in oh-fer-cryin-out-loud: In an article titled "Romney 2016 is for real," The Washington Examiner's Byron York looks at the movement to keep Mitt Romney—yes, that Mitt Romney, the oddly robotic candidate who looks like Mr. Fantastic, the wealthy former consultant who casually makes $10,000 bets with his opponents, the policy-specifics averse former Massachusetts governor who inspired so little enthusiasm as he topped the GOP ticket and lost by three four points in 2012—in the mix as a potential contender for the Republican Party's presidential nomination in 2016.

Why, you might wonder, would anyone want Romney to run again? He offered almost nothing to the ticket in 2012 except a bland respectability. Against the weak GOP lineup he was facing, that was enough to win the nomination. But most Republican voters never really loved the guy, and he never really seemed particularly fond of Republican voters or conservative policies (remember, this is the guy who as Massachusetts governor signed into law the model for Obamacare, hoping that the rest of the nation would follow).

His domestic policy agenda, in particular, was intentionally kept vague and largely substance free; he wasn't running on what he would do so much as what he wouldn't be—Obama. There was almost no positive case to vote for Romney, and he and his team barely attempted to present one. Another nod for Romney would only serve to further cement the already pervasive notion that the Republican party is an agenda-free-zone when it comes to policy.

Romney was nominated because he seemed more electable than the rest of the field. Relatively speaking, that impression may have been right, but it's hard to run on electability after having soundly lost a major national election.

So what's the case for another Romney campaign? York's piece implies that part of it is the sense that he could represent the interests of some of the party's moneyed establishment, large segments of which supported him in 2012. The establishment is looking for a contender, and they think Romney could be their best bet, especially if former Florida governor Jeb Bush decides not to run. Romney seems to think of his own campaign as a kind of alternate to a Jeb Bush candidacy. But once again, the reasoning relies on dubious assumptions about electability. According to York, "Romney is said to believe that, other than himself, Bush is the only one of the current Republican field who could beat Hillary Clinton in a general election." How's that for unshakable confidence?

There's still no agenda, just a sense of unease amongst an influential part of the Republican donor class that Romney could be the best hope they have. That a Romney run is being discussed as a live possibility suggests that some of the party's old guard is worried about losing that influence.

They're not the only ones with an interest in a Romney run, however. York quotes a GOP operative who suggests another reason why some in the party want to keep the Romney 2016 dream alive: money. Romney spent a lot of it in 2012, and there are plenty of people in the GOP campaign business who stand to make quite a bit from another run. "All his people want him to run again because they made so much money off it the last time," the operative, who didn't work on Romney's last campaign, tells York.

In other words, the case for Romney in 2016 is rather like the case for Romney in 2012: Romney, who was in the GOP primary fray in 2008 as well, would still like to be president, there are some party bigwigs who see him as their best shot, and some campaign professionals would like to cash in on yet another sure-to-be-pricey run. That's not an argument for why Romney should run. It's an argument for why he shouldn't.


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  1. Does Tulpa still do that thing where he drops some science on a thread long after it leaves the front page? Because he’ll tell you right now that we wouldn’t be in this mess if we had voted for Mittens.

  2. Romney and Jeb should run as a gay married two-fer. They could get P King for the VP slot, for credibility with the warboner crowd.


  3. “Why Would Anyone Besides the Democrats Want Mitt Romney to Run for President in 2016?”

    Fixed it.

  4. Mormons. The Mormons would very much like to see a Mormon president.

  5. Why Would Anyone Want Mitt Romney to Run for President in 2016?

    They have a twisted sense of humor?

    1. Yeah. That’s me. I found his ambivalence of the whole thing hilarious. He’ll never win. Might as well gets some laughs out of it. Hell put Herman Cain back in too. He was a riot.

  6. The coolest thing about a Romney vs. Clinton election is that I could not bother to vote, and not feel the slightest bit guilty about it.

  7. The point of the Shitt Flopneys and the Jeb Bushes running is no longer to actually get elected president. It’s to prevent an actual possible decent republican leader (such as Rand Paul for example) from getting elected president.

    That’s why Flopney and Jeb have worked out a deal where only one of them is going to run, but not both at the same time. The sorry-ass big government liberal republican establishment doesn’t want to split their supporters, they just want someone adequate enough to oppose the TEA Party/libertarian wing of the party.

    1. It’s to prevent an actual possible decent republican leader (such as Rand Paul for example) from getting elected president.

      This. The GOP establishemt love them some Hildebeast, even though they cannot come out and admit it. So they just make sure another loser runs and she gets elected. She’s the most loyal friend of cronies and war mongers everywhere.

    2. Oh, that’s hogwash. There’d be plenty of patronage in it for them if they got one of their own elected. They don’t much care who it is who’d dole out the patronage.

  8. I’m assuming TEAM BLUE would love for him to run.

  9. the already pervasive notion that the Republican party is an agenda-free-zone when it comes to policy.

    The RNC agenda is finely honed, but available only on a strict need to know basis.

  10. George HW Bush is still constitutionally eligible to serve another term. Just sayin’.

    1. George HW Bush is still constitutionally eligible to serve another term. Just sayin’.

      Only if from his jar, at least.

    2. Ditto Jimmy Carter.

  11. Why Would Anyone Want Mitt Romney to Run for President in 2016?

    I would much rather want Clinton in the WH next January 2017 so when the inevitable collapse comes, people blame her.

    1. Politically, that sounds satisfying. But in reality, doesn’t Mitt have extensive experience squeezing value out of chronically mismanaged organizations? Seems like, for the actual health of the country, that’s kind of what we’re going to need.

      1. If you mean stripping everything of value for himself and his cronies while shipping the rest to China and leaving taxpayers with the bill, well we’re already on our way there. Might as well have an expert to accelerate the process.

    2. I remember people here saying the same thing about Obama 8 years ago. How’d that turn out in terms of people blaming him?

  12. “All things considered, we’ve decided to go with a proven loser rather than take on the risk of a loose cannon.”

    1. It worked for Nixon?over Geo. Romney, among others.

  13. I’d like to see him run as a Democrat. Just for fun. If he didn’t have a history of being a Republican, I bet Democrats would go for it.

    1. If he didn’t have a history of being a Republican, I bet Democrats would go for it.

      Well they certainly were fond of his health care policies circa 2008…

    2. Dem voters will vote for anyone who promises more free shit and more PC non-sense pie in the sky feel good policies, like ‘taking action on climate chage’, ‘fight the war on wiminz’, and ‘gay everything’.

      1. I think it’s even simpler than that. In a general election, they will vote for whoever has a (D) by their name. Because no matter what they believe, electing any republican is too dangerous to even consider.

  14. Maybe the RNC can go on bended knee to Michael Bloomberg and offer him the nomination on a silver platter.

    It’s no dumber than running Mitt.

  15. A) ya’ll just threw out the facts that he’s good looking and makes 10k bets casually, as if these are bad and have the first thing to do with his qualifications for the presidency.

    B) I’ll never understand the concept of running a candidate who is barely distinguishable from the opposing candidate. This just makes it a contest of which team shows up and votes with more dedication. It seems obvious that the goal should be to distance your stance from your opponents. I’d like to see Rand Paul vs Lies with bull Warren. Maximize the contrast so it makes a little difference who wins.

    1. It’s based on the false premise that independent voters are between McCain and Clinton in the political spectrum. In reality independent voters IME fall into one of 2 categories.

      1. Those who basically just want to be left alone.

      2. No political philosophy whatsoever. For them its a beauty contest with debates.

      1. Both parties are pretty centrist, despite cried of extremism from both sides. There is not a lot of space between them.

        Group #2 is definitely who the political strategists are going after.

  16. Why would you run Mitt “Binders full of Women Romney” against a female candidate?

  17. Prevent defense would work just fine if sports teams were made up of automatons, rather than human beings highly affected by enthusiasm, morale, and tempo. They aren’t, so the deliberate failures built into “prevent” sap their will, actually making them worse players, and improving the chances of their opponent (who gain enthusiasm, morale, and tempo).

    Similarly, if the electorate were automatons voting for whomever was politically closest to them, running one micron to the right of the D would make sense for a Republican.

    So, let’s set aside the reasonable-seeming a priori theorizing about moving to the middle, and look at the actual evidence of election results.

    Who was more doctrinaire conservative, Ford or Reagan?

    Who was more doctrinaire-seeming conservative, George “No New Taxes” HW Bush in ’88, or tax-compromiser-with-Democrats George HW Bush in ’92?

    Was Dole a doctrinaire conservative, or the tax collector for the welfare state?

    Who was the more doctrinaire-seeming conservative, George “Compassionate Conservative” W Bush, or George “Invader of Iraq” W Bush? Who lost the popular vote, and who won it?

    Was McCain a doctrinaire conservative? What about Romney?

    That doesn’t mean that libertarians would or should be happy with, say, a rerun of a 2004 Bush. But it does show the establishment theory of how to win is full of shit.

    1. Actually prevent defenses are very effective with real human players, and even in basketball & lacrosse.

    2. But what about Democrats? They lost with the doctrinaire McGovern & Dukakis, won with moderates Humphrey, Carter, & Clinton.

  18. Why Would Anyone Want Mitt Romney to Run for President in 2016?

    Cuz if he loses we get Hilary and if he wins we get a Hilary Male Clone.


    go there where the idiots present are giving the possibility the Chris Matthews tingly leg treatment.

  20. Were the Etch-a-Sketch really interested in the 2016 Red Faction presidential nomination, what he should be doing right now – vehemently, enthusiastically, with dash and ?lan – is jumping on the Benghazi Beyotch with sharpened cleats and a leg whip, putting up reminder commercials showing her green-suited before the Congress making her “What Difference…?” squall while showing the names and faces of the men she’d deliberately left to die in that heavy-weapons-supported “spontaneous riot.”

    He needs to “Pick the target, freeze it, personalize it, and polarize it.”

    Starting right now, and amping it up without fail, including attacks on the present Illegal-Immigrant-in-Chief and the whole of the National Socialist Democrat American Party (NSDAP) establishment.

    It’s beyond obvious that the Romnhoid can’t endear himself much to conservatives or libertarians by simply being the Acela Republican he’s always been.

    On the other hand, if His Blandness shows a little bit of “attack poodle” style and demonstrates persistence in going for the throats of those whom likely voters hate with great passion and verve….

  21. He offered almost nothing to the ticket in 2012 except a bland respectability.

    And that’s enough to win a lot of elections, maybe most. Often it’s a matter of turning off fewer voters than than the other candidate(s). That could well be the case in 2016 for president.

    He’s won elections, he’s lost elections, like most politicians who are considered serious contenders for higher office.

  22. So, I was a Romney supporter, canvassed for him, donated, voted. He struck me as an effective and capable manager whose foreign policy at least made sense, and his domestic policy was not awful.

    Basically, I thought he would be a moderately good president, whereas Obama was definitely awful.

    I still think that’s true, and if he were in a general election, I’d obviously vote for him over someone like Biden or Clinton.

    I won’t support him in the primary. One of his strengths as a potential executive is that he’s not really ideological; while his instincts are conservative, he’s more interested in the job than in ideological doctrine. But to ideologues, like his base, he comes across as a flip-flopper. And he does have to explain things in ideological terms and he’s not good at it. He had a principled case for his pushing MA’s health care and likewise rejecting ACA, but he didn’t effectively explain the apparent contradiction. And he’s not good at the political game; during the debates, he had Obama dead to rights on Benghazi and Obama still stumped him by bringing up an irrelevant speech.

  23. Against the weak GOP lineup he was facing, that was enough to win the nomination.

    Surely, most of the rest of the candidates were deal – as in, “I can’t think of any reason to vote for this stuffed shirt”.

    Not so with Ron Paul. It took a concerted effort by the neocon Republicans and the lamestream press to assassinate the Ron Paul campaign… the only candidate who could have beaten Obozo…

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