On Friday, Republican Party leaders and donors were reported as fearing the worse if the either Donald Trump or Ben Carson were to end up as the Republican presidential nominee. The fear is that nominating either man would virtually ensure a Hillary Rodham Clinton presidency and increase the odds that the Senate falls into Democratic hands. The question is could a draft Romney movement succeed at this late date.
Could Mitt Romney come to the rescue of the party? Maybe, if the Iowa caucus race and the New Hampshire primary were to come out with different winners, especially a split between Carson and Trump. Maybe a draft movement for Romney could get some traction. Better still would be if after a win in Iowa by Carson, Romney could get significant write in support in New Hampshire, a state where Romney is well known from his days as Governor of neighboring Massachusetts.
The current performance of establishment and experienced political figures in the Republican primary fight is certainly making Romney look good in comparison. Jeb Bush is going nowhere fast. Scot Walker has already dropped out of the race. Chris Christie hasn’t caught on. Neither has the long time Congressman and current governor of Ohio, John Kasich.
So Romney, the 2012 Republican nominee is looking good right now. Go ahead compare them. In November 2011 in the race to be the 2012 Republican nominee for President, a time comparable to the current race for the 2016 nominee, Mitt Romney was running neck and neck with Newt Gingrich for the lead, with some polls having Gingrich in the lead, others having Romney leading. Looking back now, and comparing Romney and Gingrich to the current GOP primary poll leaders, Trump and Ben Carson, it gives one a sense of the GOP getting off track, of losing an opportunity.
If either Trump or Carson were to win the Republican nomination, Hilary Clinton, political pro extraordinaire with a resume as long or longer than any recent nominee for President has been, including her husband Bill, when he was a candidate for President, will likely sprint all the way to the White House in 2016.
But what if Mitt Romney were somehow to become the Republican nominee? He may be able to fare very competitively versus Hilary Clinton. After all, he would not be facing a charismatic and gifted speaker like Barrack Obama as he had to last time around. Hilary should be easier to face and easier to attack. He might at least be able to save the Senate for the Republicans.