February 6, 2014

Poor old Wolfie. Now that their great hope to see a Republican back in the White House, Chris Christie, and his presidential ambitions look like they're sinking about as fast as his poll numbers, the Villagers are looking pretty desperate for another so-called Republican "moderate" that could take his place, who could both make it through the GOP primary race and win a national election.

CNN's The Situation Room brought on former two time Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney to discuss the latest terrorist threats to the Olympic games in Sochi, because apparently getting lots of taxpayer dollars thrown your way when you were running the Olympics now makes you an expert on terrorism as well. While wrapping up their discussion on the games, Blitzer all but begged Mittens to consider throwing his hat in the ring again for 2016:

BLITZER: We're going to get back to the breaking news in a few moments.

We've got more guests coming up. Our reporters are on the scene. We're going back to Sochi.

But while I have you, Governor Romney, a few political questions, because it's been on the minds of a lot of folks over the past few weeks.

Would you consider running for president a third time in 2016?

ROMNEY: No, I've answered that question a number of times, as you know. And the answer is no. I'm not running for president in 2016. It's a -- it's a time for someone else to take that -- that responsibility. And I'll be supporting our nominee. And there are some very good people who are taking a very good look at that race.

BLITZER: A lot of people are wondering, maybe you might change your mind. Look at some of these recent polls in New Hampshire. These are Republicans. A poll came out, who would be your choice for the 2016 Republican presidential nominee?

Romney, 25 percent; Rand Paul, 18; Chris Christie, 17; Jeb Bush, 13; Ted Cruz, 7 percent. And then there was a poll that came out in -- a little bit earlier in November and -- and this was a "Washington Post"/ABC News poll, registered voters nationwide, "If the election were today" -- this was a year after the election -- "who would you vote for?"

Obama, 45 percent; Romney, 49 percent.

So you see those numbers. You see some of the folks out there in the Republican Party saying, well, Mitt Romney, maybe you should reconsider.

What say you?

ROMNEY: Well, I appreciate the compliment.


ROMNEY: It's better than a kick in the teeth. At the same time, I'm absolutely convinced that there are other people who would have a better chance of becoming the nominee, of becoming the next president of the United States, better than -- than I would have. I've had my turn. I gave it two good shots, didn't win. And now it's time for someone else to do it.

So I'm not running for president, Wolf. I -- I've, you know, made that -- that clear from, I think, the morning after the last loss.

BLITZER: The other reason I'm old enough to remember and so are you, Ronald Reagan tried three times. He got it on the third. The third time was a charm for Ronald Reagan. So, you know, you -- this is America. You can always change your mind if you want.

So if it's not going to be you on the Republican side, who do you want to be the Republican nominee?

ROMNEY: Well, I don't intend to -- to support somebody until they've actually gone through the process and -- and right now, we've got a very full group of people -- Marco Rubio; Jeb Bush; Chris Christie; Rand Paul; Paul Ryan, of course, my running mate, an extraordinary man; John Kasich, governor of Ohio, doing a great job there; Scott Walker in Wisconsin. We've got a lot of very good people. Susana Martinez in -- in New Mexico, I understand, is potentially looking at the race. I mean I -- I read that in the blogs.

So I don't know how it's going to settle down. I didn't mention Mike Huckabee. Of course, Mike Huckabee ran before, did a fine job. He may be coming back and giving it another shot.

So, you know, we'll let it settle down a bit and then finally coalesce behind the person who we think ought to be the next president.

BLITZER: Well, the last time you had to make a decision like this and you vetted a whole bunch of Republicans, you thought Paul Ryan, after you, was most qualified to be president of the United States.

You still believe that?

ROMNEY: Well, I think Paul Ryan was the absolute right person for me to have as the vice president. And I say that because I was a governor. I had not had the kind of experience in Washington to know who I could trust there, who would get the job done, how the budget process would work most effectively. And -- and Paul is not only a man of character and courage and vision, he's also a person of great experience.

And that Washington experience, combined with my experience leading as a governor, I thought, was a good combination.

But in terms of who's the best person to be our nominee, I'm going to wait to make that decision a little later.

BLITZER: Do you believe Governor Chris Christie is telling us the truth?

ROMNEY: Oh, I sure do. Chris is a -- is a friend of mine. Chris is a straightforward guy. When he tells you something, you can count on it. And I'm counting on Chris and -- and believe that he -- if he decides to get into national politics, he'll do very well, indeed.

BLITZER: If Hillary Clinton is the Democratic nominee, in your opinion, who is most qualified to beat her?

ROMNEY: Well, if I -- if I knew the answer to that specifically, then I'd tell you who I'd want to see as our nominee, because I -- I care for the people who share my views, let's say, 80 percent of the time, as Ronald Reagan used to say. Some probably share them 90 percent, some 80 percent. But just as important to me is who is it that would be the most effective in -- in carrying forward our message and being able to win back the White House and put a stop to ObamaCare and the job losses it's causing, get the economy going again, put people back to work, fix our schools, help people come out of poverty.

There's a lot to be done. This president hasn't done. And that's why I think it's time for a real change in Washington.

BLITZER: All right, Mitt Romney telling us he's not going to run once again. But as I said, this is America. People can change their minds. You remember Barack Obama said he wasn't going to run and he decided to run.

We'll see what happens.

And Governor, thanks so much, as usual, for joining us.

ROMNEY: Thanks, Wolf.

Good to be with you.

PoliticusUSA's Jason Easley also pointed why Romney isn't exactly the best character witness for Christie for anyone who wasn't asleep during the last presidential election: Compulsive Liar Mitt Romney Says Chris Christie Is Telling The Truth

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