According to a CNN unnamed source at a Republican donor event last Friday, Mitt Romney “told the group of 30 or so guys that were there that he is considering a run for the White House and that they could go tell their friends.”
This comes as the latest revelation concerning speculation over what Mitt’s intention are for 2016 amid increasingly frequent meetings with former aides and advisers. Though it’s still not clear whether he’ll run, it is a stark departure from his previously insistent refusal to run for the White House.
The move likely was prompted by an announcement from Team Bush that he has set an ambitious fundraising goal of $100 million in the first quarter of this year. If there is even a scintilla of a chance that Romney might choose to run, freezing his donors from committing to Bush is a strategic move.
What’s more, a senior Republican reported that Romney is making phone calls to influential Republican leaders and telling them that he is ‘quite likely to run’. The announcement is of course a game-changer for Bush who, up to now, had essentially secured front-runner status with his mid-December announcement and the formation of his Super PAC.
Political analysts have long speculated that a Bush-Romney contest is highly unlikely given they appeal to the same base and that neither is inclined to go into a total-war situation in which quite possibly neither of them win after the dust settles.
But on the heels of Romney’s announcement, details have emerged concerning the rocky relationship between the two GOP titans, not the least of which is the frustration that still lingers over Bush’s refusal to endorse Romney over Newt Gingrich ahead of the 2012 Florida primary.