The National Journal Hotline has is
sued its first ranking of GOP presidential contenders for 2012, and ex-Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney [pictured
] heads the list, followed by Minnesota Gov. Tim
Pawlenty, South Dakota Sen. John Thune, Mississippi Gov. Haley Barbour, ex-Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee and ex-Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin.
As for Romney, “The GOP has a history of nominating the person who has stood in line, and after finishing second behind John McCain in 2008, Romney is now that person,” the publication writes.
“He's got the necessary infrastructure, fundraising ability, and intangibles to be the undisputed front-runner, but how convincingly he answers nagging questions about his individual mandate in Commonwealth Care will determine how long he keeps the top spot.”
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