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Posted by on Jan 31, 2005 in At TMV | 0 comments

A GOPer Gearing To Run For Prez In 2008?

A top GOPer seems to be systematically laying the groundwork for a 2008 Presidential run — the son of a famous politician, and now governor of a major state…but his initials aren’t J.B.

They’re M. R.:

Friends and supporters of Governor Mitt Romney have established a political action committee that has lavished more than $250,000 on Republican candidates and county GOP organizations across the nation since July, apparently laying the groundwork for a potential presidential run for the Massachusetts politician in 2008.

The Commonwealth PAC has pumped more than $35,000 into the campaign coffers of Republican candidates for the US House and Senate in 17 states and has created state subsidiaries that have distributed tens of thousands more in four key states: Iowa, South Carolina, Michigan, and Arizona.

Romney’s allies insist the donations do not indicate he plans to run for president, but political operatives and lawmakers on the receiving end of the cash say the Massachusetts governor is following the same path of other successful presidential nominees in the past. Other potential candidates for 2008 have also established PACs to distribute money.

”What the governor is doing is smart politics," said Luke Byars, executive director of South Carolina’s Republican Party, which hosts the first presidential primary in the South. ”Our motto at the Republican National Convention was, ‘We elect presidents.’ If you’re going to be successful in your run, you have to come through South Carolina."

One factor in his favor: it’s increasingly clear that Senators don’t have as much success in running for President as Governors. A few factors working against him: whether Jeb Bush will run (this assuming that by 2008 the Bush name is still the equivalent of political gold for the GOP) and whether a new election cycle will kick in, where voters opt for a Democrat after 8 years of GOP White House dominance.

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