A Mitt Romney Nomination In 2016?

Don't rule out a Mitt Romney presidential nomination in 2016.

Mitt RomneyRomney might prove to be the default GOP nominee, as in 2012.

Jeb Bush remains, in my view, the most likely to win the nomination "as a uniter," to re-coin a phrase.

Later, Bush can capture much of the wounded Chris Christie's support from the center-right of the Republican field, including Wall Street. The Bush family's roots are Wall Street, after all, especially during the career of Yale Skull-and-Bones product Prescott Bush, Jeb's grandfather.

Most of the other 2016 candidates will be tea party and other candidates to the right, thereby splitting their followers into multiple segments during primary season.

But something can come up to thwart the Bush machine and help Romney.

Almost all major candidates in both parties carry "baggage," otherwise known as fund-raising or other scandals that could be devastating if not criminal upon disclosure.

Bush, additionally, has the burden as well as advantages of the accumulated legacy of two previous Bush presidents and their family predecessors in public life. The negatives could outweigh the positives if Christie's already-serious problems rapidly escalate. This would transform Bush prematurely into a front-runner subject to long and potentially ruinous scrutiny even by the timid mainstream media.

Washington Post political writer Dan Balz floated a Romney candidacy last week.

"Christie's problems have sparked strange talk about a Romney campaign in 2016," he wrote. "Fortunes change quickly in politics. Three months ago, Chris Christie was on the Republican mountaintop, and Mitt Romney was in the valley. Today, Christie’s once-bright future is clouded by scandal, and, wonder of wonders, Romney is enjoying a moment in the sun."

Balz continued of Romney:

"Virtually discarded by the GOP after his loss to President Obama, he is now the unlikely star of a well-reviewed Netflix documentary about his two unsuccessful presidential campaigns. He has taken the opportunity of its release to strut a bit in public. He has done morning television, Sunday talk, interviews with reporters and — with his wife, Ann — attended Super Bowl events. The warmer Romney seen in the documentary has sparked surprising talk about a possible 2016 presidential run. Romney has been firm in his rejection every time the subject has been mentioned. Still, the chatter continues."

I have a less benign view of Romney. His career, wealth-building and ties to the Mormon Church comprise a major part of my book, Presidential Puppetry: Obama Romney and Their Masters . "Mitt Romney: Going for the Gold" is the title of one of six book chapters largely devoted to documenting unreported or under-reported stories about him.

However, Balz of the Post is a good source for conventional wisdom on the current state of Romney's viability.

Balz ascribed a Romney renaissance into public discussion to two factors.

"The first is from Republican donors, who know the table stakes necessary for a successful campaign in 2016," he wrote. "Romney and Obama each raised about $1 billion in 2012. The next campaign isn’t likely to be any less expensive. Republican donors look at the Democrats and see Hillary Rodham Clinton looming as the party’s possible nominee. They have no doubt that she could amass any amount of money necessary. Who can raise that much on the GOP side? It was assumed that Christie could. If there is a core constituency for his candidacy, it is among the wealthy, establishment, donor class of Republicans. Jeb Bush presumably could raise it. Few others are on the list."

"The second source of encouragement," Balz continued, "is coming from people who were impressed with the Romney they saw in the Netflix documentary — more human than the Romney who was given to gaffes on the campaign trail and who had trouble connecting with working people. Had that Romney been more visible in 2012, they believe, he might have won."

Nearly all top-tier candidates in both parties would face big problems if the public knew what they had had to do to position themselves for a serious run. Pervasive electronic surveillance ensures also that a large amount of damaging evidence is collected and retained, and not just by federal agencies.

Much of the work is performed by private contractors such as the Carlyle Group subsidiary Booz Allen Hamilton, which employed NSA contractor Edward Snowden after his employment with NSA and the CIA.

Many of these contractors obtain and retain their work via political connections. The relationship building in the process makes at least part of the data subject to misuse for political purposes. In Puppetry, I document major distortions of the democratic process by rogue contractors that are not subject to serious investigation because of the stature of the beneficiaries. The possibilities are endless.

Looking Ahead

Many Republicans have reasons to seek the nomination as long shots. Only a few have both the stature and wealth to win it, and not suffer a tremendous setback if they lose.

Paul RyanMost important, House Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan, right, the party's 2012 vice presidential candidate, could be a front-rank contender and is already at the top or near the top in the early polls. The problem is that he could risk his Congressional seat in a swing district in southern Wisconsin.

Therefore, Ryan's claim to lack interest is probably more serious than the same words would be now from others who have less to lose. Non-candidate status helps nearly every prospect at this stage. So it doesn't make sense to rely specifically on what a potential candidate says about interest in the race.

Might Romney be a white knight heading the GOP ticket in 2016 as a more accessible and electable candidate than he was in 2012?

The former Massachusetts certainly to a step in that direction last month in an appearance at a fund-raising event in Arizona with Alex Boyé, a Britain-born Mormon singer and actor of Nigerian descent.

Romney came from the audience to the stage to dance a few light-hearted and impressively light-footed steps with Boye in the "Gangnam-style" popularized in 2012 by the South Korean singer Psy with a video dance craze that went viral mocking life-style in a prosperous district in his nation's capital. 

Romney made a nice try.

But it's always hard to eclipse the original. In this case there are two. One is by


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Catching Our Attention on other Justice, Media & Integrity Issues

Washington Post, Scenes from a militarized America: Iowa family ‘terrorized,’ Radley Balko, Feb. 4, 2014. Watch this video, taken from a police raid in Des Moines, Iowa. Send it to some people. When critics (like me) warn about the dangers of police militarization, this is what we’re talking about. You’ll see the raid team, dressed in battle-dress uniforms, helmets and face-covering balaclava hoods take down the family’s door with a battering ram. You’ll see them storm the home with ballistics shields, guns at the ready. More troubling still, you’ll see not one but two officers attempt to prevent the family from having an independent record of the raid, one by destroying a surveillance camera, another by blocking another camera’s lens. From the images in the video, you’d think they were looking for an escaped murderer or a house full of hit men. No, none of that. They were looking for a few people suspected of credit card fraud. None of the people they were looking for were inside of the house, nor was any of the stolen property they were looking for. They did arrest two houseguests of the family on what the news report says were unrelated charges, one for a probation violation and one for possession of illegal drugs.

Paul Craig RobertsPaulCraigRoberts.org, Obamacare: The Final Payment: Raiding the Assets of Low-Income and Poor Americans, Anonymous, Feb. 8, 2014. Introduction by Paul Craig Roberts, left: The anonymous Obamacare expert who provided us a year ago with the most complete account of Obamacare available has returned with an explanation of estate recovery. Obamacare herds the poor into Medicaid, which requires some enrollees to forfeit homes and other assets they might have to the state to cover the cost of their medical care. The research article below is meticulous and demonstrates that Obamacare was not enacted to serve the people. Expert Conclusion: "Obamacare was not written for the benefit of the poor and uninsured. It was written for the profits of the insurance companies, giving them millions of new customers subsidized by U.S. taxpayers. The business of America is business. Private insurance company CEOs receive multi-million dollar pay packages, while under Obamacare low-income earners and the poor have to give up their homes and other assets in order to receive medical care."