Romney met privately with Kristol to discuss third-party candidate

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By Karl de Vries


WASHINGTON (CNN) -- Mitt Romney met privately with leading conservative columnist William Kristol this week to discuss how best to get an independent candidate into the presidential race.

The meeting on Thursday comes as anti-Donald Trump conservatives cling to hope that a viable third-party candidate could offer an alternative to the billionaire businessman and the likely Democratic nominee, Hillary Clinton.

Kristol, the editor of The Weekly Standard, told CNN Special Correspondent Jamie Gangel that he's working to get a strong independent candidate and wanted Romney's thoughts on who it might be, how it could be done and whether Romney would help -- to which Romney agreed.

Kristol then suggested that Romney should consider whether he "might be the candidate" -- although Kristol qualified the remark by saying he's not "actively working to get him to run."

A message left with a spokeswoman for Romney was not immediately returned. The meeting was first reported by The Washington Post Friday night.

Romney in the past has said he is not interested in an independent run. In January 2015, he floated the idea of mounting a third presidential bid as a Republican before saying he wouldn't seek the GOP nomination. Since then, he's become perhaps the most notable anti-Trump Republican, delivering a sweeping broadside against the now-presumptive nominee back in March when he called Trump a "phony" and a "fraud."


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  • gaar

    Romney did everything he could to get Obama reelected four years ago. Now he is doing everything he can to get Hillary elected. Romney is a very rich, evil person.

  • Ken

    Independent would just guarantee Hilary the nomination. She would get all the Democrats, then all the Republicans would split allowing Hillary the win.

  • Roger Tanner

    I am sick and tired of these RINOS! If we divide our house, then it will fall . . . again! Thanks to these individuals who do not listen to the voters, but know-it-all about defeat. We are so close to bringing back America to her rightful place in the world, only to lose it to these “insiders”.

    • Joe W.

      Speaking of RINOs, Trump is the epitome of that definition. The Republican party has been commandeered by a Democrat in Republican Sheep’s clothing, who is little more than a blowhard fascist pig whose favorite tactic is 5th grade name-calling. If seriously consider such an independent candidate. I can’t stand Hillary, but Trump is equally appalling as a choice.

  • Duke LaCrosse

    This proves that the political insiders know that Trump will win. Publicly they say he stands no chance against Hillary, but they know he is poised to beat her in a landslide and ruin the insiders game they have set up in D.C. These are evil, desperate insiders trying to keep the gravy train of our wasted tax dollars flowing. #Trumptrain

  • norsegirl

    Utah better hope Hillary wins. Our boy Mitt has made it personal. Trump never forgets a slight or insult, and his “take no prisoners” vengeance is legendary in the business world,

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