Top Republicans Describe Their Ideal President: Me

Ask a Republican about the GOP’s perfect 2016 candidate, and they’ll read you their résumé.

TAMPA, FL - AUGUST 26: Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker speaks at the podium ahead of the Republican National Convention at the Tampa Bay Times Forum on August 26, 2012 in Tampa, Florida. The RNC is scheduled to convene on August 27 and will hold its first full-day session on August 28 as Tropical Storm Isaac threatens disruptions due to its proximity to the Florida peninsula.
National Journal
Julie Sobel
See more stories about...
Julie Sobel
Nov. 22, 2013, 10:34 a.m.

Wis­con­sin Re­pub­lic­an Gov. Scott Walk­er dis­missed talk of the 2016 White House race as he pro­moted his new book Fri­day—but de­scribed an ideal can­did­ate that looks just like him: “An ideal can­did­ate to me would be a cur­rent or former gov­ernor,” Walk­er said. “Just be­cause I think gov­ernors have ex­ec­ut­ive ex­per­i­ence and, more im­port­antly, I think there’s a real sense across Amer­ica that people want an out­sider.”

Walk­er is hardly the only one these days deny­ing a fo­cus on the White House race, while at the same time de­scrib­ing the per­fect can­did­ate as someone a lot like him­self. The hope­fuls may be play­ing coy about their own in­ten­tions at this early stage, but they’re cer­tainly will­ing to paint a pic­ture of what the GOP nom­in­ee should look like—and if it comes out as a self-por­trait, then so be it.

A run­down from the past week:

— Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas, in an in­ter­view on Bloomberg Tele­vi­sion’s Polit­ic­al Cap­it­al With Al Hunt: “What I think the next pres­id­ent should be is someone who’s lead­ing the fight for free-mar­ket prin­ciples and the Con­sti­tu­tion, and someone who’s listen­ing to the Amer­ic­an people—not listen­ing to the es­tab­lished politi­cians.”

— Rep. Paul Ry­an, R-Wis., at The Wall Street Journ­al‘s CEO Coun­cil, after stat­ing that the nom­in­ee did not need to be a gov­ernor: “I would like to make sure we get a per­son who is a stand­ard-bear­er who can go the dis­tance,” Ry­an said. “I am fa­mil­i­ar with what go­ing the dis­tance means, and it means a lot. It is not easy to do.” He ad­ded that the nom­in­ee should “be strong on prin­ciples, in­clus­ive on ideas,” and show people “the full spec­trum of con­ser­vat­ism.”

— New Jer­sey Gov. Chris Christie, also at The Wall Street Journ­al‘s CEO Coun­cil, said the can­did­ate seek­ing a path to vic­tory in a na­tion­al race must avoid “fo­cus-group-tested” speeches. “You need someone who’s clear, dir­ect, and au­then­t­ic and says what they think,” he said.

— In­di­ana Gov. Mike Pence, at the Re­pub­lic­an Gov­ernors As­so­ci­ation meet­ings in Scott­s­dale, Ar­iz.: “When I look at 2016, and I don’t have a can­did­ate that I’m back­ing, I’m go­ing to be look­ing not for some­body that says I want to go to Wash­ing­ton, D.C., and run it like I ran where I came from. I want some­body that says I’m go­ing to go to Wash­ing­ton, D.C., and make it more pos­sible for the next per­son run­ning where I came from to do it with more free­dom and flex­ib­il­ity.”

— And fi­nally, give Sen. Rand Paul, R-Ky., some points for be­ing straight­for­ward: On Monday, he bluntly told Fox News that he thinks Amer­ic­ans want someone like him. “I think they want someone out­side of, you know, what’s been go­ing on. For ex­ample, someone like my­self who has been pro­mot­ing term lim­its,” he said. “Someone who says we shouldn’t have, you know, dec­ade after dec­ade longev­ity up here.

What We're Following See More »
PROCEDURES NOT FOLLOWED
Trump Not on Ballot in Minnesota
2 days ago
THE LATEST
MOB RULE?
Trump on Immigration: ‘I Don’t Know, You Tell Me’
2 days ago
THE LATEST

Perhaps Donald Trump can take a plebiscite to solve this whole messy immigration thing. At a Fox News town hall with Sean Hannity last night, Trump essentially admitted he's "stumped," turning to the audience and asking: “Can we go through a process or do you think they have to get out? Tell me, I mean, I don’t know, you tell me.”

Source:
BIG CHANGE FROM WHEN HE SELF-FINANCED
Trump Enriching His Businesses with Donor Money
4 days ago
WHY WE CARE

Donald Trump "nearly quintupled the monthly rent his presidential campaign pays for its headquarters at Trump Tower to $169,758 in July, when he was raising funds from donors, compared with March, when he was self-funding his campaign." A campaign spokesman "said the increased office space was needed to accommodate an anticipated increase in employees," but the campaign's paid staff has actually dipped by about 25 since March. The campaign has also paid his golf courses and restaurants about $260,000 since mid-May.

Source:
QUESTIONS OVER IMMIGRATION POLICY
Trump Cancels Rallies
4 days ago
THE LATEST

Donald Trump probably isn't taking seriously John Oliver's suggestion that he quit the race. But he has canceled or rescheduled rallies amid questions over his stance on immigration. Trump rescheduled a speech on the topic that he was set to give later this week. Plus, he's also nixed planned rallies in Oregon and Las Vegas this month.

Source:
‘STRATEGY AND MESSAGING’
Sean Hannity Is Also Advising Trump
5 days ago
THE LATEST

Donald Trump's Fox News brain trust keeps growing. After it was revealed that former Fox chief Roger Ailes is informally advising Trump on debate preparation, host Sean Hannity admitted over the weekend that he's also advising Trump on "strategy and messaging." He told the New York Times: “I’m not hiding the fact that I want Donald Trump to be the next president of the United States. I never claimed to be a journalist.”

Source:
×