Whatâ??s next for Daniels?

November 12, 2008
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Mitch Daniels has plenty of reason to feel good about himself these days.

Last week, he won reelection in a landslide after cutting a wake through a change-averse state, and without going negative on his opponent, Jill Long Thompson.

Daniels also needs a raft to keep from drowning in accolades.

Today, Governing magazine named him Public Official of the Year for wiping out a deficit he inherited, leasing the Indiana Toll Road and raising cigarette taxes to fund a health insurance program.

Also this week, venerable Washington Post columnist David Broder devoted a big chunk of a column about rising Republican governors to Daniels, citing his pragmatic style of problem solving as an example of how to reinvigorate the decimated GOP. Broder quoted Daniels as attributing his success to relying on market principles, fiscal restraint, listening to people, and a live-and-let-live approach to social issues.

Bill Kristol, who edits the conservative Weekly Standard magazine, lumped Daniels in with Sarah Palin and Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal as potential presidential candidates in 2012.

Daniels has said he wonâ??t run for office again. Remember, though, that he was recruited to run for governor by party wigs worried about what they saw as a state going down the tubes.

So, if he were urged to run for something else, how would he respond?

If you were Daniels, what would be your next move?
  • Unfortunately, Mitch won't run for President... he's too smart for that. My guess is after his next term he'll sit on the sidelines until he finds a nice CEO gig.
  • Mitch is the MAN. Don is right, Mitch will not choose to seek higher office. Smart people would not put themselves through that horror and torture known as D.C. POLITICS.
  • Uhhhh.....you seem to forget he was head of the OMB before he became governor. You'd almost have to try to be more of an insider than that.

    Frankly, if the rudderless Republican Party continues in its downward spiral, I think there might be a concerted effort to keep him in the public sector -- especially if Lugar were to retire.
  • I take the man at his word, that Governor of Indiana was the first and last office he will run for.
    But I could see a return to a role in federal government, perhaps a future Cabinet position when the GOP returns to the White House.
  • a juicy promotion for daniels and a juicy rehiring for former VP- Chenny. if you can't tell, I was joking. I have grown tired of projecting the future. Lets worry about today and today's problems.
  • I would run from anything Bill Kristol says. He is one of the founders of the modern neo-con movement which has had us fighting in the Middle East for years now. Just look up the Project for a New American Century. This study was part of the reason why our nation has been at war for years. Daniels doesn't represent the change the country needs. Does he talk about the Constitution, failed economic and foreign policies, or a flawed monetary system? Of course not. He's an insider, a globalist, straight from the Bush administration, a McCain supporter, and yes, he got the state out of debt but the state has lost thousands of jobs under his watch and leasing the toll road to foreign entities doesn't really help the US economy. Be careful before you drink all the Daniels/Bush/McCain/Kristol/Palin Republican Kool-Aid...and the Obama/Biden/Clinton/Pelosi/Frank Democrat Kool-Aid, for that matter. It might be two different pitchers but it all comes from the same mixture. Beware of big government.
  • Would love to see Palin/Daniels in 2012. She has the appeal and he has the smarts and working knowledge to work behind the scenes very effectively.
  • @rick:

    HAHAHAHAHAHAHAH... wait, you're serious? Maybe if the Republican party doesn't reinvent themselves by then and want to drive the final nail in their coffin this would be the way to go.
  • I am not trying to sound sexist here, but no matter how many times Palin trys for either VP or President, I will always vote against her. Her voting record on disabilities scares me. Don't get me wrong, she COULD be a great canididate, but disabilities is one of my hot topic buttons and I wil refuse to support someone who does darastic cutbacks on disabilities.

    I have been known to vote Republician, Democrat and Third Party (even on the same election), and reguardless of race, gender, religious background, or anything on their personal life, I vote upon their voting record and my hot buttons (hopefully like most of America).
  • Daniels will probably adhere to his earlier pledge to not seek another office, and that is a shame in my opinion. I'd love to vote Republican more often, but the party has been hijacked by religious and social conservatives and they've alienated moderates like myself. The GOP needs to dig up more candidates like Daniels if they want to start winning elections again. Palin is amusing to watch but the last thing I want is another evangelical spasm of power. They've had their shot.
  • I couldn't disagree with you guys more. What Palin stands for is what we need in this country. A strong voice to stand up for the disabled - (I have special needs children and am too a VERY strong advocate) - A strong voice to stand up for energy independence - A person who is able to effectively communicate with all classes of society.

    What I don't understand about all of you so-called moderates and you liberals is that you proclaim that everybody needs to be respected in a diverse country. But in your next breath you disparage the conservative views of other people. C'mon folks - you can't have it both ways.

    Daniels and Palin are two of the preeminate governors in this country. Both have taken active strides toward improving their respective states with dramatic results. Put differently - they have spoken with their actions rather than with eloquent hyperbole.
  • Rick, disagreeing doesn't equal disparaging. I'm very pro-business and in favor of small gov't., but don't agree with conservatives like Palin and George W. who are very focused on advancing the social agenda of the religous right, and so I won't elect them. I'd say it's the far right that can't have it both ways. They can either find a way to get moderates to return to the GOP, or they can keep faith and values as their focus and continue to lose. Daniels, I think, is a great model of someone who could help the Republican Party reinvent itself and get back toward a healthier center.

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