Bush Endorses Mitch Daniels for President?

Bookmark and Share In Abel Harding’s Politijax colum for the Florida Time Union’s Jacksonville.com, Jeb Bush is quoted as being quite supportive of Indiana Governor Mitch Daniels‘s possiblt run for the Republican presidential nomination.

Abel writes;

“Jeb Bush likes Indiana Governor Mitch Daniels’ 2012 presidential prospects. The former Florida governor told a private gathering of Jacksonville business leaders that Daniels is the only potential candidate he’s heard who demonstrates a willingess to face up to harsh realities.

“Mitch is the only one who sees the stark perils and will offer real detailed proposals,” he said, speaking at a reception held before he took the stage in front of a crowd of real estate professionals.

Bush acknowledged that Daniels is absent the smooth, television-friendly delivery present in other hopefuls, but said voters were looking for a direct approach.

“He would be the anti-Obama, at least socially,” Bush said. “He’s not good on a teleprompter, but if my theory is right that could work well for him.”

For my part, in the past I too have callled Mitch Daniels the “anti-Obama” but while I have admitted that he may lack the rock star-like persona that Barack Obama has been accused of having, I must say that I believe Mitch Daniels speeches have a homey, down to earth, heartland appeal that President Obama lacks. And if my theory is right that “will” work well for him.

But it is also worth noting that Jeb Bush is not the only possible or once popular presidential contenders to offering near endorsements of a Mitch Daniels presidency. Back in October of 2010 I blogged about the praise that was heaped on to him by possible opponents Mike Huckabee, and Newt Gingrich.

Gingrich apparently admires Daniels so much that he once publicly encouraged to run. And not long ago, so did Haley Babrour.

Of DanielsHuckabee said I tend to think governors make good presidents because theyve actually managed a microcosm of the federal government. He added Mitch Daniels has done, I think an exemplary job as a leader, manager and governor of the state,.

Right now there seems to be one thing that all the possible presidentia contenders agree and that is that Mitch Daniels is a good man for the job of President. Will they still agree if hebeats them in Iowa and New Hampshire?

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Possible Third Party Candidacy Could Make Palin the Perot of 2012

Bookmark and ShareIf you haven’t caught on yet, Sarah Palin marches to the beat of a different drummer. And while she is committed to the principles of the Republican Party, she is not totally committee to the Republican Party. For her, when it comes to Political loyalty, it stops when her principles are lost in it. That is after all how she went from being the Mayor of Wasilla, to becoming Governor of Alaska and even becoming the 2008 Republican nominee. This is a woman who spotted corruption in Alaska after being appointed to the position of Oil Commissioner. She then rooted out the corruption and when it got to the point where she saw the hands of Alaska’s Governor involved in it, she resigned her post and opposed him in the Republican primary for Governor. This despite the fact that the Governor she challenged was the same man who appointed her to her position.

This loyalty to principles rather than politics was in large part the reason she was selected by John McCain to be his vice presidential running mate and despite what some may think, it is the same type of loyalty that she maintains today. This is why Sarah Palin opposed so many of the Party establishment’s candidates in 2010, by supporting their challengers in Republican primaries. Sarah Palin is not one who wishes to be defined by her Party, she prefers to define it. In 2010 she helped to do so by rallying TEA activists to the side of insurgent candidates. In 2012 she could do the same thing. Or she could try to rally them behind herself in a bid for the Republican nomination.

But like many of those who consider themselves to be TEA movement activists, Sarah Palin remains reluctant about the politics that elected Republicans will play in their new roles of power. Like many in the TEA Party, Palin is hoping that the G.O.P. holds firm in opposition to the Obama agenda and on a return to states rights, fiscal responsibility, limited government and a focus on the Constitution. Sarah is watching and waiting to see what they do. She is also watching and waiting to see who will run for the Republican presidential nomination and what each one of them will say. This is perhaps one of the reasons why she is coy about being a candidate for the Republican nomination herself.

If the Republican controlled House fails to demonstrate to the voters who put them in to power, that they are true to their words, many of those voters will turn their back on the G.O.P. as quickly as they did with Democrats prior to the 2010 midterms. If that happens, Palin will have a small window of opportunity to do one of three things. She could forego a run for President and simply continue to be an advocate for the candidates she supports and a cheerleader in the TEA movement. She could run for the Republican presidential nomination and try to convince Republican voters that she is the outsider who could bring conservative principles back to the Party. Or she could simply say the hell with the Party and run as an Independent.

Either one of the latter two are a big risk. But the biggest risk of all would be to run for the Republican presidential nomination. While Palin is popular, to many she has become a known quantity that they believe is too erratic and too controversial. Even among Republicans, her favorable to unfavorable numbers are poor. In addition to that, the G.O.P. presidential field is going to be a crowded one and an expensive one. Between Mitt Romney and Haley Barbour alone we are talking about possibly well over one hundred million dollars. Last time around, Romney spent $70 million of his own money and more on top of that with contributions. Then throw in the likes of Tim Pawlenty, Rick Santorum, Ron Paul, and possibly Mitch Daniels and what you have is a costly and bloody battle that becomes hard for anyone to get their message out in.

For these reasons, I believe Sarah Palin can bide her time and see where all the chips fall before she commits to anything.

If the G.O.P. fails to live up to their promises and voters once again become disappointed in them, would it be in Sarah Palin’s best interest to spend upwards of $50 or $60 million to try to win a nomination of a tarnished Party that she spends a year tying herself closer to? While I do not doubt that Sarah could hold her own in the primaries, I am not confident in her being able to actually win the nomination. And if she doesn’t win, does anyone think the winner will tap her to be their running mate and run for Vice President a second time? I doubt even Sarah would accept such an offer herself.

Ultimately, Sarah Palin is probably going to be wise to lay back and see how the G.O.P. presidential field shapes up. Then after taking in to account all the variables, determine if the field has an opening in it that she can fill and decide if she really wants to link herself further to the Republican Party.

If the G.O.P. falls short of their promises, all things considered, Palin might be better off to continue marching to a different drummer by running as a well-financedIndependent candidate for President. She would start off with a very energized TEA Party base, a base that can get her name on the ballot in all 50 states. And then she can deliver a Reaganesque message about her not leaving the Party, but by abandoning its principles, the Party left her and millions of other Americans.

A public decision to run as an independent could probably come as late as March of 2012, when there may very well be a Republican coming close to getting the nomination, if they haven’t already. Based upon who that nominee is, Palin could fine tune the themes of her own campaign and pick up and run with all the issues that the Republican nominee fails to run with. Of course if this were to happen, President Obama would win reelection. If Palin pursued such a course, she would do just what Ross Perot did to George H. W. Bush in 1992. Perot’s third Party candidacy was one of the most successful of its kinds ever mounted and its success was responsible for electing Bill Clinton President,

In that 1992 election, President Clinton received 44,909,806 votes (43.0%), G.H.W. Bush received 39,104,550 votes (37.5%), and Ross Perot collected 19,743,821 (18.9%) of the vote.

It is with great clarity that we see how Ross Perot took enough votes away from President George H. W. Bush to allow Bill Clinton to defeat him.

Ross Perot’s Reform Party successfully elected Bill Clinton the President of the United States, and back then, that Reform Party was at most, as large as the TEA Party is now. While the TEA Party movement rose form the streets, The 1992 Reform Party rose from the mind of a wacky millionaire and revolved around him. Without Ross, there was no Party.

That is not the case with the TEA Party. Though it is a large and active movement which does not have any one leader representing them, they could easily get behind one person who runs a campaign that represents their ideals. As a so-called darling of the TEA Party, Sarah Palin could quite easily be that one person. The question becomes, would she do so as a Republican who keeps them in the G.O.P. or will she do so as an Independent, third Party candidate who siphons them away from the G.O.P.?

If Palin ran for the Republican nomination, she could easily be overtaken in what will be a large and aggressive field. And if in the end, she lost the nomination, she will not have the resources and time left to mount a meaningful third Party candidacy. This would leave her a beaten, wounded, defeated candidate, without the same stature and platform that she had prior to entering the race.

If Palin ran as a Third Party candidate, she would spend much of her money on just insuring that she gets on the ballot in all 50 states by gathering all the right signatures in all the right ways. But with the strong grassroots of the TEA Party movement behind her, this will be easier for her than it was for Perot. And as a third Party candidate, she will be able to spend more time directing her campaign to the national electorate rather than just the Republican voters. This will enable her to win over a significant number of voters who will commit to her candidacy early. Many of them will be Republicans, even more of them will be TEA movement members and Republicans who feel disenfranchised by a Party that they believe left them. The area where Palin will have the toughest time is with Independent voters. Aside from Democrats, this is where her numbers are weakest. But a carefully crafted campaign and softening of her image could force them to give her a second look, especially since she would be representing no political Party, something that most Independents find very attractive.

A third Party candidacy would not be likely to get Sarah Palin to the White House. But her chances of doing that as the Republican candidate are actually only slightly better. But by running as a third Party candidate, Palin is insuring that she is in the game until Election Day and that she has a place in all the presidential debates. This insures her ability to shape the debate and force the Republican candidate to the right, where they should be. In fact, if Sarah Palin were to announce a third Party candidacy early enough in the primary season, that could wind up being the catalyst for the creation of a strong, solid, conservative in the Republican primary, as opposed to her having a diluting effect by splitting the conservative vote within the Republican primary.

In some ways, a third Party candidacy by Sarah Palin could do some good for the Party. It would force them to really reaffirm whether or not they are the Party of Reagan or Rockefeller. It would force them to stick to their guns instead of abandoning ship. Of course it would also help Barrack Obama get reelected.

It Is for this reason that Republicans must treat Sarah Palin with kid gloves. While she may be a lighting rod ridiculed by the left, she is also someone who helps Republicans with the very base that abandoned the G.O.P. in previous years. And if they want to win the presidency in 2012, they can’t afford to have that base wander off the path or stay at home again. The smart candidate for the Republicanpresidential nominee will try to out Palin, Palin early. While Mitt Romney has been keeping the TEA party at arms length, others like Pawlenty are embracing them. Possible presidential contender, Governor Rick Perry of Texas, has been shaping a very TEA Party-like agenda for his state. Strategies like this could pay off big. For the right candidate, it could help make them a Palin-like alternative to Sarah, without carrying any of the baggage that Palin has been saddled with.

In the end, Palin has many options available to her but those Republicans who want tomake a serious run for Presidenthave little choicebut to get Sarah Palin on their side.

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Mitch Daniels Shows the GOP How to Fight Obamacare

Bookmark and Share As Indiana Governor Mitch Daniels waits for the end of his states legislative session and takes the time to make a decision about a possible run for President in 2012, he recently stepped forward to take a strong lead in opposition to Obamacare. Earlier this week, he sent a letter to Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius. In it he laid out six aspects that the law and Federal government must correct or revise if the states are ever going to take control as intended in the health care law. Daniels adds that if these six areas are not taken care of, the Federal government must take the responsibility of carrying out its mandates, itself. Daniels note that up to now, 21 Governors representing more than 115 million Americans have signed on to the same letter .

Governor Daniels also wrote an editorial in the Wall Street Journal that took no hostages in a scathing analysis of Obamacare, as right off the bat he wrote;

Unless you’re in favor of a fully nationalized health-care system, the president’s health-care reform law is a massive mistake. It will amplify all the big drivers of overconsumption and excessive pricing: “Why not, it’s free?” reimbursement; “The more I do, the more I get” provider payment; and all the defensive medicine the trial bar’s ingenuity can generate.

“All claims made for it were false. It will add trillions to the federal deficit. It will lead to a de facto government takeover of health care faster than most people realize, and as millions of Americans are added to the Medicaid rolls and millions more employees (including, watch for this, workers of bankrupt state governments) are dumped into the new exchanges.

He added;

For state governments, the bill presents huge new costs, as we are required to enroll 15 million to 20 million more people in our Medicaid systems () This is a huge burden for our state, and yet another incremental expenditure the law’s authors declined to account for truthfully.

For those who are willing to read between the lines of Mitch Daniels WSJ piece, it is easy to see that Mitch Daniels is enabling himself to establish a campaign for President that can strongly and convincingly argue against Obamacare and put the issues of states rights in to the forefront. That is an issue that will be an issue the 2012 campaign that will factor strongly in appealing to TEA movement voters.

But as for now, Governor Daniels has demonstrated that on the issue of Obamacare, he will certainly have the ability to put President Obama on the defensive, probably better than many other candidates.

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Mitch Daniels Wins Republican Presidential Straw Poll

Bookmark and ShareEarly polls regarding who people think the Republican nominee for President in 2012 should be, are merely snapshots of only the moment at which they are taken and not necessarily reliably indicative of what their opinions will be in the future. And depending on how the question is asked and who makes up the audience that is polled, these “snapshots” are not even always accurate of current sentiments.

That said, one of the newest presidential straw polls of interest comes out of Washington state, where unlike the heavily polled states of Iowa and New Hampshire, Indiana’s Governor, Mitch Daniels is receiving a whopping 17% lead over his nearest opponent, Mitt Romney.

The straw poll was taken by the Washington State Republican Committee during their annual meeting, making it one that gauges the state’s Party organization and its local leaders and activists. Such support is often critical to a candidates success on Election Day.

  1. 31% Governor Mitch Daniels, Indiana
  2. 14% Former Governor Mitt Romney, Massachusetts
  3. 13% Former Governor Tim Pawlenty, Minnesota
  4. 9% Governor Chris Christie, New Jersey
  5. 8% Senator John Thune, South Dakota
  6. 5% Governor Bobby Jindal, Louisiana
  7. 3% Representative Paul Ryan, Wisconsin
  8. 3% Former House Speaker Newt Gingrich, Georgia
  9. 3% Senator Jim DeMint, South Carolina
  10. 3% Former Governor Sarah Palin
  11. 2% Governor Haley Barbour, Mississippi
  12. 2% Former Governor Mike Huckabee, Arkansas
  13. 1% Representative Mike Pence, Indiana
  14. 1% Ambassador Jon Huntsman, Utah
  15. 1% Representative Michele Bachmann, Minnesota
  16. 1% Representative Ron Paul, Texas

These straw poll results are quite different than those of other states.

Whereas in other recent polls, names like Palin, Gingrich and Mike Huckabee, show up in the front of field, in Washington, some of the more usual big name conservatives are languishingbehind the rest of thepack. In fact aside from the surprise story herebeing that Mitch Daniels is the big winner, and has been handed an unexpected boost to his presidential ambitions, the other big story to come out of these poll results is the fact that Mike Huckabee is a big loser. Here, Huckabee ties with Mississippi Governor Haley Barbour in 11th place and 2% of the vote.  In other polls, he is either the winner or somewhere close to it. His dismal showing in Washington, can be an indication of Huckabee’s lack of attractiveness as a candidate to voters ourtside of the South and Iowa.

Another important note in these results is Mitt Romney’s second place showing.

A second place finish in Washington wouldnot normally be problematic. But given Romney’s relatively high profile since his 2008 presidential campaign, coming in second tosomeone like Mich Daniels is a clear signal that Mitt Romney is in a weak position. And to emphasize that point, is the thedistancethat existed between first and second place. Mitch Daniels beat Romney by more percentage points than Romney even recieved. making matters worse for Romney is the indication that unless the conservative vote is split among numerous, Romney will have a tough time consoliditaing a clear majority of his own.

Washington state is not known as a haven for conservative politics. It leans to the left. But while the results reflects a lack of popularity for the most aggressive conservatives, it doesn’t necessarily reject conservatives. Neither Mitch Daniels or Mitt Romney can be considered liberal and aside from the third place showing of relatively moderate Tim Pawlenty, right behindthem are New Jersey Governor Chris Christie, and South Dakota Senator John Thune, also fairly conservative people. All of this leads me to walk away from these results with the following extrapolation.

Right now, Washington state Republican activists are most concerned with the issues of spending, the deficit and budgets. As such, Mitch Daniels’ reputation and record in these areas have legs. Furthermore; while Mitch Daniels personally embraces the conservative line on social issues, he does not highlight these issues in ways that others like Huckabee and Palin do. To me it would seem that Daniels’ having gone on record as suggesting that Republicans call a truce on social issues and focus more on the greatest immediate threats we face, is one that Washington state Republicans agree with and appreciate.

Washington sends 43 delegates to the Republican National Convention and holds its nominating contest in February of 2012.

As for making a decision to win those delegates in run for President in 2012, Mitch Daniels has made clear that he will make his decision when the Indiana legislative session is over in April. But lately he has stated that he knows he must make a decision soon because the plans of many people hinge upon it. Other recent statements by Daniels regarding the problems that we as a nation face, have helped to make it sound like he is leaning more towards a run for the GOP nomination, than not.

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Mitch Daniels For President Ads to Air In Iowa and New Hampshire

Bookmark and Share Now that one Indiana Republican, Mike Pence, has made it official that he will not be running for President, what about the man whom Pence might seek to replace in the Indiana Governors Mansion, Mitch Daniels?
Daniels has said that he will not make a decision until after the Indiana legislative session in April. But that is not good enough for some people who want to see the budgetary expertise and sense of fiscal responsibility that Mitch Daniels has, in the White House.

Hence the ad below.

Produced and paid for by Student Initiative to Draft Daniels, the group will be airing their new ad in New Hampshire and Iowa. In Iowa it will first appear during the Super Bowl.

On a personal note, while I have not made a decision on who I am supporting, I do have four frontrunners of my own. One I supported in 2008. This time around, I want to be sure we elect the best person. So I am going to let the candidates prove to me which one is the best. But Mitch Daniels is one of the four I am favoring and I truly hope he enters the ring, because he has the potential to be the best we have to run with in 2012.
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Mike Pence’s Email Announcement to Supporters

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Below is the email in which Congressman Mike Pence announced to his supporters that he will not be a candidate for the Republican presidential nomination in 2012Friends and Supporters,

Over the past few months, my family and I have been grateful for the encouragement we have received to consider other opportunities to serve our state and our nation in the years ahead.

We have been especially humbled by the confidence and support of those who believe we should pursue the presidency, but after much deliberation and prayer, we believe our calling is closer to home.

The highest office I will ever hold is husband and father. As a family, we feel led to devote this time in our lives to continuing to serve the people of Indiana in some way.

In the choice between seeking national office and serving Indiana in some capacity, we choose Indiana. We will not seek the Republican nomination for president in 2012.

In every major decision in my life, I have learned to follow my heart, and my heart is in Indiana. Karen and I love this state: the highways and byways, the small towns and courthouse squares, the big cities and corn fields. We love the strong and good people of this state and feel a debt of gratitude to those who have sustained our work with their steadfast support and prayers.

After years of falling behind, Indiana is on the verge of an era of growth and opportunity like no other time in my life. Those of us who serve Indiana in Congress and in the Statehouse have a unique opportunity to advance the interests of Hoosiers. As Governor Daniels has rightly observed, there is important work to be done in Indianapolis and Washington, and it’s time to focus on the task at hand.

In the months ahead, as we attend to our duties in Congress, we will also be traveling across the state to listen and learn about how Hoosiers think we might best contribute in the years ahead. After taking time to listen to Hoosiers, we will make a decision later this year about what role we will seek to play.

Public service requires humility, patience and discipline to pursue what matters most. To save this nation, men and women of integrity and insistent conservative vision must step forward and serve where they can make the most difference. While we may have been able to seek the presidency, we believe our best opportunity to continue to serve the conservative values that brought us to public life is right here in Indiana.

For now, permit us to simply say “thank you.” In the wake of such encouragement, we have often thought to ask, “who am I, Lord, and what is my family, that you have brought me this far?”

Thanks to all those who took time to offer earnest counsel and advice.

Thanks to all who took time to express encouragement from across the state and across the country. And thank you for the prayers of so many faithful friends.Indiana can lead the nation back to fiscal responsibility, reform and strong families.

As we achieve an even better Indiana for our children and grandchildren, we will continue to be a model for a better and stronger America.

Sincerely,

Mike Pence

Columbus, Indiana
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Mike Pence Not Running for President

Bookmark and Share Indiana Congressman Mike Pence is said to be making his announcement regarding a run for President or maybe for Governor of Indiana instead, on Thursday. But today Roll Call reports that the influential conservative Representative is not likely to run for President.

Jerry Alexander, Pences former Political Director told Roll Call

Theres a 100 percent chance that hes not going to announce a run for president,.

The Indianapolis Star is said to be posting Pences decision after 7 p.m. Eastern time.

The decision to not run for President would more than likely mean that Mike Pence will in fact seek to replace outgoing Indiana Governor Mitch Daniels who is term limited. This would follow the logic behind a schedule for the Congressman that has him attending 9 different Lincoln Day dinners for Indiana Republican county organizations.

A decision by Pence to not run for President will mark one of the first moves by a major potential player in the Republican field and have a likely impact on the decisions of several others who are considering a bid for the Republican Presidential nomination. The now unlikely presidential candidacy of Mike Pence also leaves a segment of social conservatives now having to look elsewhere for a champion of values. One of the most interesting questions will be what the supporters of Mike Pence will do.

A recent draft Pence movement by the Americas President Committee, could now shift their support elsewhere. Who that would be is still unclear.

UPDATE:

The Star posted the news early with a letter Pence and his wife Karen sent to supporters.

In the choice between seeking national office and serving Indiana in some capacity, we choose Indiana, Pence wrote. We will not seek the Republican nomination for president in 2012.

Pence said he would decide his next step later this year.

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Pence Out?

Mike Pence may be announcing his plans for 2012 tomorrow. At least that’s what his family believes according to the National Journal. Rumors flying around the internet are that he will not run, and will instead consider running for Indiana governor. Stay tuned…

Conservatives “Amp It Up” in Draft Mike Pence for President Movement

Bookmark and Share In an email to supporters of Indiana Congressman Mike Pence, Ralph Benko, the coordinator of the Americas President Committee, tells Pences fans to amp it up and demand that Mike Pence run for President.

The email goes on to point out how momentum for the draft Pence effort is building and gaining prominent supporters. It reads;

Conservative leaders and icons like former House Majority Leader Dick Armey and conservative icons such as Richard Viguerie, Brent Bozell and Morton Blackwell are not just joining with Rep. Ryun and me. They are using their influence to rally others to the Mike Pence cause.

Benko also reminds people to sign up with the draft effort at http://theconservativechampion.org and to join the efforts Facebook page.

Pence faces a tough decision that will force him to give up his safe seat in the House of Representatives at the end of 2012. He can either decalre himself a candidate for the Republican nomination for Governor of Indiana, to replace outgoing Governor Mitch Daniels, or he can throw himself in to the presidential sweepstakes.

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Mike Pence Comes Closer to a Decision on a run for President

Bookmark and Share Indiana Rep. Mike Pence spent time addressing the Indiana state legislature and in his remarks he offered some hints about a run for Governor of Indiana. But he also gave those who would like to see him run for President, some hope.

The Congressman stated Were certainly hearing encouragement from our friends here at the Statehouse in various ways,” He added “I’ve heard as many people encourage us to consider coming home to Indiana as I have people who pulled me alongside and said, ‘Keep the national campaign in mind.

Reporting for the Indy Star, Mary Beth Schneider writes:

Those who expect Pence, R-Columbus, to run for governor may have been heartened by his statement to lawmakers that “the states hold the promise of the future.”

Those who are pushing him instead to run for the White House in 2012 may focus in on his call for a “new federalism” — which sounded like a budding presidential slogan.

As for which race Pence is actually running in he stated “I certainly know where I’m leaning, but I haven’t made any decision.”

That decision is suppose to come by the end of this month. It would certainly provide him with the time he needs to catch up to others who have already privately made their decision. If Pence decides to run for President, he will be the first to do so officially.. A strategy that could work to his benefit.

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America’s President Committee Launches A Draft Mike Pence Campaign

Bookmark and Share Back in September, White House 2012 posted a piece on Mike Pence which mentioned that Mike Pence has a Jack Kemp-like following. Well today, that following declared that Mike Pence extraordinarily exemplifies the optimistic, pro-growth, pro-job creation Reagan-Kemp wing of the GOP and subsequently launched the America’s President Committee, an entity designed to mount a draft effort to encourage Pence to run for President.

Ralph Benko

Leading the charge is self described populist conservative, Ralph Benko, a former deputy counsel to President Ronald Reagan. Benko is also a columnist for Townhall.com and a senior advisor to the American Principles Project and a principal of the public affairs firm, Capital City Partners, LLC. He is also a member of the TEA Party Patriots

In a Monday morning statement, Benko declares;

Grass-roots conservatives, Republicans, the tea party and populists are looking for a man or woman of principle who can champion and unite the newly energized and engaged citizenry,

He adds;

Mike Pence is the best choice to lead us into a new era of peace and prosperity.”

One of the first most notable names to join the draft Pence effort is former Kansas Congressman Jim Ryan. He plans on helping the campaign to collect signatures.

Pence is planning a run for something other than reelection to the House of Representatives in 2012. After the GOP took control of the House in the 2010 midterms, he gave up his leadership role in the important House Republican policy committee. Pence stated that other endeavors would preclude him from being able to devote the amount of time that such a leadership position demands. Many suspect that those other endeavors are either a run for Governor of Indiana or for President.

If Pence were to give up his safe House seat for one or the other, giving it up for the Governors mansion would be a much

Mike Pence

safer bet than a run for President. Pence lacks some of the name ID of other potential candidates and would have a tough time gaining traction. At least at first. He would also have a tough time if Indianas outgoing Governor, Mitch Daniels, decided to run.

But with the Republican field currently wide open, Pence cant be written off if he did decide to run for the Republican presidential nomination. He does have an active support system within the GOPs conservative base and an ability to articulate a positive conservative message that will resonate. At the moment, Pence is benefiting from what is a late start of the campaign for the Republican nomination. Many big names are putting off an official decision until April. Potential candidates like Mitt Romney feel that his January 3rd, campaign kickoff in 2007, was too early for the 2008 elections and caused him to peak too early. Others like Mitch Daniels are waiting for the end of their state legislative sessions before they make a decision. And still others are waiting to hear what other names like Sarah Palin are doing.

For my part, I have been waiting for the draft movements to begin. There has already been a large number of such groups for candidates like Herman Cain, Sarah Palin and many others. But to date, the America’s President Committee effort for Mike Pence is one of the highest profile draft efforts to date.

But believe me, there will be more to come for many other names.

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Governor Daniels Accepts Invite to Address the Annual Gridiron Club Dinner

Mitch DanielsBookmark and Share In addition to taking his message out of state and to the Hamilton County Republican Committee’s Lincoln Reagan Day dinner in Ohio, today we find out that Mitch Daniels has accepted an invitation to address the Gridiron Club at their annual dinner in March. The Gridiron Club is the oldest organization for journalists in the United States. Its prestige is found in its in collective membership of of national news leaders,political reporters, bureau chiefs, and columnists.

Being asked to address a meeting of those who shape the daily headlines and delivery of news to the people, is a sign that the media is keenly aware of the potential that exists in the possible presidential candidacy of Mitch Daniels.

After announcing Daniels as speaker at their dinner, Susan Page, the current President of the Gridiron Club, posted a Twitter which read simply;

“Recent Republicans who have addressed Gridiron Dinner before winning the GOP presidential nomination include McCain, Dole, George H.W. Bush.”

…….Hint, hint.

Indiana’s Governor has been quite reluctant to talk presidential politics in recent months but form the speaking schedule that he is quickly putting together, it looks like he is priming himself up to do so. I am still waiting for that major speaking engagement that accepts in the South. That to me will be a strong indication of what his decision about a run for President will be in April.

Oh yeah, as to another speaker who will be attending to representing Democrats, that will be none other than Mitch Daniels possible opponent for President………the President of the United States, Barack Obama.

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Mitch Daniels Heads to Ohio to Address Hamilton County Republicans

Bookmark and Share A rising star not only in Ohio but national politics is Ohios newly elected Republican Governor John Kasich. Yet despite his rising star, Indianas outgoing Governor Mitch Daniels will be the keynote speaker in Kasichs backyard, at the Lincoln Reagan Day Dinner of the Hamilton County Republican Committee.

The move is a significant signal in favor of a potential presidential run for Daniels. He is not usually prone to making many out of state appearances so the timing of this speech in a critical, delegate rich battleground state like Ohio, looks a little suspicious. Adding to the suspicion is also the type of event he chose to speak at. Republican County dinners are a dime a dozen andi names as big Daniels. Nt is usually quite difficult to get a name as big Daniels’ to accept an invitation to. Not unless it is a county in New Hampshire or Iowa during presidentialelection season.

But Ohios Hamilton County is in the middle of Cincinnati, a vote rich and donor rich region of one of the most important primary prizes in the nation and Daniels who stated that he wont make a decision on a presidential until the end of the Indiana legislative session in April, is obviously keeping his options and not ceding Ohio to other potential rivals.

Daniels will be a very strong candidate in the Midwest and if he is seriously considering a run for President, it behooves him to do all that he can to keep voters minds open to his candidacy, and not commit themselves to others like Romney who has an impressive and lucrative fundraising base in the Cincinnati area. So keeping the door open to his candidacy in the region where Daniels should be the strongest, is wise strategy. But if you really want a strong sign of what direction Daniels is leaning in when it comes to a bid for the White House, look for any moves he makes in the South.

If Daniels accepts a speaking engagement like this in the South, where he will have some of histoughest competition, then you will know for sure that a run for President is in the stars for Daniels.

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Poll Has Romney Keeping Nevada in His Column

Bookmark and ShareWith recent changes made to the Nevada Caucus process, the Silver State will play an increasingly important role in the road to the 2012 Republican presidential nomination. Which is why although just a little more than a year out, a poll showing the strength of Mitt Romney among potential Republican rivals, is a good sign for the former Massachusetts Governor.

A Public Policy Polling survey gives Romney 31% to Sarah Palin’s 19 percent, and Newt Gingrich comes in at a close 18 percent and Mike Huckabee trails in fourth place with 14 percent.

The poll also shows Romney neck and neck in a hypothetical contest between him and President Obama. In that result, President Obama takes 47% to Romney’s 46%.

The results of the poll are likely influenced by the Romney’s strong Mormon base in Nevada and the fact that he was virtually the only Republican to campaign in the state for the Party nomination in 2008. Romney won the 2008 Nevada Caucus and apparently is the frontrunner as we head in to the 2012 race.

But the difference between now and then is that in 2008, Nevada was a non-binding caucus that allowed delegates to change their mind at the national convention. In 2008, Nevada is a binding contest. Additionally, it is not a winner take all contest, which means that campaigning in the state will be worth the while of all the candidates in the field. Being a proportional contest will allow for several candidates to walk away with at least some delegates for their efforts.

This will make the 2012 Nevada Caucus very different for Romney than it was in 2008. This time around he may actually have some aggressive opposition.

Recently, former Speaker of the House Newt Gingrich sent out an advance man to get a feel for the political terrain in Nevada and would seem to figuring the state in to his campaign strategy. Not only is the state now holding a binding caucus vote and awarding delegates proportionately, as one of the first contests in the nation and the first in the West, a win in Nevada could a candidate establish momentum or at least the impression of momentum.

Still, Romney is ahead and not just in the polls. He is ahead in Nevada when it comes to his organizational capacity and the level of commitment that some voters already have to him as a result of his last run for the nomination. And if that lead becomes seemingly insurmountable, Romney’s rivals may just leave the state to him and focus on the primaries immediately following Nevada, specifically South Carolina, a state where Mitt will have an uphill battle and is a critical prelude to the ever important Southern primaries of Super Tuesday.

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Mitch Daniels’ Potential Presidential Campaign Heads To CPAC

Mitch Daniels is being urgedBookmark and Share In February of each year, Washington D.C. plays host to a convention that caters to the conservative base of the Republican Party, the part of the Party thatcan make the difference in who wins the G.O.P.’s presidential nomination. It is the Conservative Political Action Conference and it is a must stop for any Republican presidential aspirant.

Now we get news that term limited Indiana Governor Mitch Daniels is joining the roster of speakers at the event.

Last year, Daniels skipped the event because he felt that it would have proved to be a distraction that prevented him from focusing in on his responsibilities as Governor. Although Daniels claims that he will not make a decision about a run for President until the Indiana state legislative session wraps up in April, apparently he believes that this year, his CPAC will not be enough of a distraction to keep him away.

If Daniels really has not made up his mind about a run for President, his appearance at CPAC in 2011 certainly helps keep his options open and will continue to fuel speculation about a potential Daniels candidacy. Currently there is not much any behind the scenes movement in the Daniels camp regarding development of a campaign organization but he certainly has the ability to get one going at a moments notice.

One of the high points at the CPAC conference is its straw poll. Winning it is normally a sign of organizational ability and the level of enthusiasm that exists from within the republican base. Voting is voluntary and is often skewed by how aggressively supporters of individual candidates pass out ballots and return them to the ballot box. In 2010 the winner of the straw poll was Ron Paul. Out of 10,000 people in attendance only 2,400 ballots were handed in and of them, Paul received 31%. Trailing him was Mitt Romney with 22%, Sarah Palin with 7%, Tim Pawlenty at 6% and Mike Pence received 5%.

In the three years prior to that, Mitt Romney walked away with the win.

So far, in addition to Mitch Daniels, CPAC confirms Romney, Paul, former House Speaker Newt Gingrich of Georgia, Mississippi Gov. Haley Barbour, former Minnesota Gov. Tim Pawlenty, Sen. John Thune of South Dakota, and former Sen. Rick Santorum of Pennsylvania, as being in the lineup of speakers.

In the end, if Mitch Daniels is not seriously contemplating a run for President, he sure isn’t doing much to dispel rumors that he is.

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Speculation Over Pence’s Potential Presidetial Campaign Picks Up

Bookmark and Share With Republicans emboldened by some of their largest gains ever in state legislative races and the House of Representatives, the field of those considering and planning a run for the Republican presidential nomination is growing everyday. Even greater than the growing field of actual Republican contenders is the field of pundits predicting and speculating about some who are not really giving the 2012 presidential election serious consideration. Somewhere in between these two categories lies Indiana Congressman Mike Pence.

With popular Indiana Governor, Mitch Daniels entering his final year in office, Mike Pence is largely seen as his most likely Republican successors. After Republicans took back control of the House, Pence did indeed forego a leadership role in the new Congress because of other tasks which he stated would preclude him from devoting the amount of time that such leadership roles deserve. This has been taken to mean that he will be campaigning. But for what?

Among movement conservatives, Pence proves to be popular. In September of 2010, he won a straw poll of those in attendance at the annual Values Voters Summit, defeating even Mitt Romney, Mike Huckabee and Sarah Palin. And at home, Indiana polls show Pence to be just as popular. But the question becomes which area of popularity can the Congressman parlay into an election victory?

In a field of hard hitting presidential contenders with the likes of Mitt Romney, Haley Barbour and Sarah Palin, people who can draw crowds and big bucks, Pence is likely to have quite a difficult time being assured of the Republican presidential nomination and then the presidency. But at home in Indiana, he has an inside track for his Partys gubernatorial nomination and a great chance of defeating any of the weak Democrat challengers he is likely to face.

If Pence runs for either President or Governor, he will have to give up his seat in the House at the end of this term and so the question then becomes, which bet is worth giving up his safe congressional seat for?

Pence recently scheduled a slew of events for himself to headline at in Indiana. This sent pundits on to the gubernatorial storyline. But now Pence is scheduled to be the keynote speaker at an invitation-only conservative Awakening Conference in the ever important early primary state of South Carolina, turning the storyline back to a possible presidential bid.

In the end, expect Mike Pence to allow the speculation about a run for President to increase. Pence will accept each and every invitation that will help build him up as a potential Commander-In-Chief. Why not?

The more stature he gains a possible president, the more palatable it will be for Indiana voters to find him fit to govern their state. Add to that the fact that incumbent Presidents are reelected much more often then not and what you have is a smart politician who is looking to the future by preparing to become the Governor of Indiana and waiting for the speculation about 2016 to begin after the next presidential election, when pundits start reminiscing about all the talk their was regarding incumbent Governor Pences aborted presidential race in 2012.

In the meantime, while most the talk about Pences intentions will be guesswork, there will be no need for guesswork when it comes to what he will be doing during the course of his next year and half in the House of Representatives. There Pence will be a strong and vocal deficit hawk who will willingly stand up to the House Republican leadership and oppose them whenever he can move to the right of them and prove his strong independent streak to the voters of Indiana.

Unless the declared field of Republican candidates proves to be devoid of any of the big name suspects and unless Mike Pence is under the misconception that he can out-fund and out-campaign them, it is unlikely for Pence to run for President. He may play the speculation out for all that its worth and go as far as announcing an exploratory committee and utilizing a 501-4C, but not so far as making a presidential candidacy official. As far as this writer for White House 2012 is concerned, the only question to come out of Indiana in regards to the 2012 presidential cycle, is if outgoing Governor Mitch Daniels is running for President, not Mike Pence.

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Daniels Issues A Dire Warning Over “Trickle-Down Government”

 Bookmark and Share  In an interview with the BBC, Governor Mitch Daniels warns that the United States is on the verge of collapse because of out of control spending that is about to bankrupt the nation. He called the crisis a “genuine survival-level issue” similar in urgency to that of nuclear threat.

Daniels goes on to describe the Obama stimulus package, which was suppose to turn the American economy around, as a form of “trickle-down government”. He explains that it was a poorly constructed formula that poured funds into a “growing government edifice”.

According to the Governor;

“We’ve had this reverse outcome, in which the private sector has continued to shrink, and the government sector has gotten bigger, and that’s not a very good formula for long-run success.”  Daniels added;

I start from a premise that maybe others don’t. I believe America — for the first time other than the nuclear threat of a few decades ago — faces a genuine survival level issue. My reading of history and of economic history tells me that there are points of no return, past which nations really will not recover to anything like their previous strength. If you don’t think things are that serious — if the arithmetic doesn’t speak to you in the same way — then you wouldn’t agree with many of the other .” 

In presenting the interview, the BBC didn’t fail to describe Daniels as contender for President and in covering the Governor statements many foreign publications introduced him as “a strong contender to oppose Barack Obama in the 2012 elections.”

Daniels’ strong statements on the American economic crisis demonstrates his intention to focus on economic issues, a strategy that would have legs in a run for the Republican presidential nomination. And in Mitch’s case, his record of downsizing government and successful management of his state’s budget at a time when all others around him are struggling with overwhelming deficits, will make him a authoritative figure on the economy, an issue that is likely to dominate the political landscape in 2011 and 2012.

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