Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Hayes: Christie will feel "tremendous pressure" to run

The Weekly Standard's Stephen Hayes says the 2012 field's flaws will drive at least one unexpected name into the race.

"Mitt Romney, obviously, has to answer for his health care plan in Massachusetts. I think he's got a tough argument to make there.

You've got these flaws in other candidates.

I still expect that we will somebody jump in, who is not currently in the race or thought not to be in the race.

Whether that's -- I mean, I don't really take Donald Trump that seriously -- whether that's a Chris Christie, who I think is going to be feeling tremendous pressure from national Republicans over the next several weeks, several months, to get in the race.

Whether it's a Jeb Bush, who's said 'no', whether it's a real outlier like Paul Ryan, who has said 'no' repeatedly, who's thought to be too young. I expect that we're going somebody like that still jump into the race in the next couple months."

Presidential races are all about timing. With the field being stripped of its viable alternatives (Mike Pence, John Thune, and now -- possibly -- Mitch Daniels), there's a huge opening for Christie.

A guy with a more pragmatic disposition -- like Jeb Bush -- could be effective in most cycles, but a brasher, more confrontational guy like Chris Christie is much more dependent on a particular moment, and that seems to be now.