The 2016 presidential election is a little over two years away, and Republican contenders are starting to get their names in front of the public, the media and the people who could make their campaign fly – or die.
An influential conservative, the president of Americans for Tax Reform, Grover Norquist, says out of a possible field of dozens, there are only six Republicans worthy of the Republican presidential nomination for 2016.
Norquist presented his list to Business Insider in a lengthy interview last Friday at the Conservative Political Action Conference.
The most revealing thing is the names that were not included on the list.
“There are only six people who can credibly run start-to-finish, and any of them could conceivably win the presidency. And the reason is, each of those people could raise the money to run a campaign all the way through. Each of those people has some name ID.” – Grover Norquist.
Norquist’s list consisted of five Governors and one Senator.
- New Jersey Governor Chris Christie
- Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker
- Louisiana Governor Bobby Jindal
- Texas Governor Rick Perry
- former Florida Governor Jeb Bush
- Kentucky Senator Rand Paul
Senator Marco Rubio (R-FL) and Senator Ted Cruz (R-TX), two prominent CPAC speakers, were left off the list, and for good reason, according to Norquist.
Norquist and his group have been highly critical of Texas Senator Ted Cruz, especially in the lead-up to the federal government shutdown last September.
Rubio’s immigration stance, that ruffled the feathers of some Republicans.One of Norquist’s reasons for eliminating Rubio from the list is
The main reason Cruz, Rubio and others were eliminated from consideration is their expected inability to raise the kind of money needed to endure a long, drawn-out 2016 campaign. The presumptive Democrat nominee, Hillary Clinton, is expected to have a massive campaign war chest, so a lot of money will be needed to overcome her TV advertising onslaught.
Norquist does have a favorite – Governor Scott Walker of Wisconsin. Governor Walker has already won two elections in four years. “Governors have a better chance of running a successful campaign,” Norquist said.
Commenting on Walker’s recovery in Wisconsin’s failed recall against him, Norquist said “Walker is still gaining momentum after a ‘fantastic’ 2012, when he became the first and only governor to ever stave off a recall. When Scott Walker wins re-election in November, it’ll be the third time he’s won an election in four years.”
Commenting on the upcoming Senate elections, Norquist predicted that “Republicans have a ‘better than 50-50 chance’ of re-taking control of the U.S. Senate. Republicans have seven prime pick-up opportunities – West Virginia, South Dakota, North Carolina, Louisiana, Montana, Arkansas, and Alaska. They only need to swing six seats to take back the Senate.”
Mindful of the albatross that is Obamacare hanging around the neck of Democrats, Norquist said these are all states that “Republicans win overwhelmingly at the presidential level and at a federal level.”
I think I like the sound of “President Scott Walker” for 2016.