George Pataki isn't 11th GOP presidential candidate, after all
Former New York Gov. George Pataki has reportedly decided not to enter the crowded field of GOP presidential hopefuls. It's hard to see where he could have carved out some turf, say analysts.
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“Speculation was that the former three-term governor would announce his candidacy Saturday at the Polk County Republican fundraiser,” wrote Mark Preston in CNN’s Political Ticker blog. “But the source said that Pataki, who seriously considered running, has decided instead to forgo a run for the GOP nomination.”
IN PICTURES: Republicans in the 2012 presidential race
The three-term governor, who also flirted with a 2008 White House bid, had been showing telltale signs of running in 2012: He signed on for the Polk County Republican Party picnic, scheduled several speeches in Iowa, and his nonprofit “No American Debt” has been airing TV ads in New Hampshire, an early nomination battleground state.
But the buzz also had candidate-watchers scratching their heads.
Though Pataki is a thrice-elected governor of the large, liberal, northeastern state of New York – no small feat for a Republican – his candidacy would have been difficult to justify, politically and strategically, says Brian Carso, a professor of history and government at Misericordia University in Dallas, Pa., who served three years in the Pataki administration.
“I just don’t see a compelling rationale for his candidacy,” Professor Carso said in an interview before Pataki decided not to run.
For starters, Pataki's record on the issues important to Republican primary voters wouldn’t have gotten him far, says Ford O’Connell, director of the Virginia-based Civic Forum PAC. “Being a pro-choice, pro-gay-union candidate with union ties is not a winner with the Republican electorate,” he says.