Daniels opens door on 2012 presidential campaign

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Indiana Gov. Mitch Daniels has cracked open the door on a potential 2012 presidential run.

Washington Post political writer Dan Balz on Monday quoted Daniels in a blog post as saying he’s reluctant, but now “open” to the idea. Balz interviewed Daniels at the winter meeting of the National Governors Association in Washington D.C. over the weekend.

In numerous staunch denials over the years, Daniels, a Republican, has previously dismissed local and national speculation about his ambitions for a possible presidential bid. But, according to the Post, a series of conversations in recent months initiated by people who’d like him to run, including one with former president George W. Bush, convinced Daniels to reverse his position.

“Just to get them off my back, I agreed to a number of people that I will now stay open to the idea,” Daniels told the newspaper.

In response to an e-mail from IBJ, Daniels’ spokeswoman Jane Jankowski said the governor currently has nothing to add beyond what he told the Post.

According to the blog post, Daniels hasn’t taken any preliminary steps toward establishing a national campaign. Daniels told Balz he’ll spend the next year focused on Indiana’s problems.

“For now to a year-plus from now, that’s all I’m going to do,” Daniels said. “And if these people [encouraging a presidential bid] are still around, and still not fully satisfied with the field, and if I don’t see anybody who’s raising what I think of as the survival issues for the country, I guess I’d listen, if it’s not too late, which it might well be. I’ve told people if it’s too late, so be it.”

Daniels characterized his newfound openness to the nation’s highest office in terms of the same platform issue he’s consistently preached in Indiana: fiscal responsibility. The governor told the Post he believes some candidate needs to spearhead a national debate on debt, deficits and the size and role of government.

Whether that candidate is Daniels remains an open question.

“Are we still a country where people would prefer freedom, personal autonomy, with the risks and responsibilities that go with it, or do we want to socialize all the risks we can and settle for what I think is the false security of statism and so forth?” Daniels said. “I think those questions have got to be presented by somebody.”


  • and....


    So you'd perfer an oversized gov't? Without getting into a mud fight about who is right & wrong, it's easy to explain a Liberal mindset: bring all privatized programs under the gov't and make sure it's available to everyone (as if it can't be done without the gov't absorbing it.

    The other thing to go with that is a large gov't is like an umbrella, giving everyone shelter when they need it. But it has to be big enough such that any holes which develop in the umbrella can be protected. If it keeps growing & growing, the greater the chances people should (ought to, but not necessarily will) everyone will be covered.

    There's an excellent example of outsourcing which most people won't think of it: Sallie Mae (nee USA Group). They were ahead of the curve.
    They saw an opportunity for a business and went for it. Obama wants to absorb many companies such as this one into the gov't. Why? Can the federal gov't do it better? I'm not looking at it from the # of jobs lost, I'm looking at how the entire system works.


    One of the stories which was in the press dealt with people near the Illinois border, where people would cross over, drop their kids off at day care, return to Indiana to work. They whined it would screw up their schedules to be out of sync for 6 months. Regardless of the names for time zones, the way I had to express it to clients was, "we're on New York time" or, "We're on Chicago time." Back then they were out of synch six months, weren't they?

  • nah...
    I don't hate little Richie Mitch...it's just that his track record as head of OMB and Governor is a massive, epic FAIL...only off by about $2 TRILLION on the whole Iraq War thingy and Indiana has lost more jobs under Mitchie Rich than ANY other governor in Indiana history (ok so math is NOT his strong suit?!) so basically I mock him as often as I can, along with the morons who voted for him! :)
  • Joe...
    I love how your title describes you. I'm sure your friends family and co-workers appreciate you calling them all morons. I notice that you couldn't give an example of how he as wronged Indiana (I might argue education), but I'm sure it is easy for an enraged devout democrat to make that mistake.
    • Susan
      Daniels has proven he can get things done in Indiana in spite of the obstructionist Rep.Bauer. He has already cut budgets in the White House as budget director...Noone, bar none could be more needed, trusted, and experienced person (not politician) for the job. I hope the Republican powers that be start organizing for Daniels.
    • Yay!
      I once was a "Ditch Mitch" fan... Now I realize that he was able to rip that foreign company off for Indiana's own benefit and even though I hated changing time zones it was not that big of a deal. I would def be willing to help him campaign. He has done great things for Indiana... Its just too bad we wouldn't be able to keep him as our gov.
    • Campaign already started
      Daniel's talks to Barrons about his platform


    • Hole
      Mark, go back to your hole in South Bend. The biggest democrat in the midwest, Richard Daley, has privatized everything and I don't see you on msg boards talking about him.
    • Really?
      Got news for you, the rest of the country already is on the same time zone schedule as Indiana. WE were the only oddballs before.

      Will definitely be interesting to see if this comes to pass!
    • Love it!
      This country needs Daniels so badly. This is unbelievable news. He has been so committed to his State regardless of politics, I know he would do the same leading the country. Make it happen Mitch!
    • I'm with him
      I would gladly work on his campaign.
    • Really?
      Oh boy, maybe he can lease and outsource everything like he has done in Indiana.
      • Horray!!
        He will make a fantastic president. I am very happy about this news.
      • HURRAY!
      • Best news I've heard in a long while.
        Best news I've heard in a long while. As a registered voter - glad to hear this.

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