A leading conservative analyst is asking Mitt Romney to change his mind and jump into 2016 presidential race — because the nation needs a "statesman of the first rank" which Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton are not.
"These are extraordinary times, and your nation still has need of your service. I respectfully implore you to run for president as an independent candidate in 2016," writes Jay Cost
, a columnist for The Weekly Standard.
"[Trump has] a twisted and angry ideology that views the world through a racialist lens. Worse, his intemperance knows no bounds, making him liable to lash out at any (real or perceived) rivals.
"Meanwhile, Hillary Clinton is running as the heir to the Obama administration, which has shredded our constitutional system of checks and balances in its never-ending quest to favor Democratic client groups."
Cost says Trump and Clinton "do not see Americans as Americans. They see each of us as potential allies or foes, depending upon their small-minded political calculations."
He adds the nation is now in a "grave" situation that needs "a statesman of the first rank to hold high the standard for the values that have animated the United States since its founding."
Cost — author of "A Republic No More: Big Government and the Rise of American Political Corruption,"
published by Encounter — concludes with the pitch: "Please, Governor Romney, run for president once more."
Romney has insisted he will not run as a third party candidate, which would be his third stab at seeking the White House. But some GOP insiders believe he is watching the race carefully as presumptive Republican nominee Donald Trump continues to roil the party with controversial remarks.
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