I've often said that anyone who's willing to go through all the character assassination and loss of privacy that's necessary to run for President is probably too crazy to hold the job. And although he didn't use those words during his announcement that he wouldn't be running, I get the impression that Indiana Governor Mitch Daniels agrees.
While certainly no sure thing, Daniels embodies the qualities that could have made him a real contender for the Republicans. He's smart and accomplished. He's popular in his state and has served it well. He appears scandal-free. And while he's played to the conservative base by supporting school vouchers and anti-abortion legislation he's also reached across party lines by proposing tax increases for the wealthy and a truce on social issues.
In short, he's a man of complexity and nuance – not a mindless mouthpiece for anyone's party line. But – sad to say – that kind of maturity doesn't seem to play well in these days of "politics as blood sport." And he's smart enough to realize it.
In announcing his decision, Governor Daniels said "Simply put, I find myself caught between two duties. I love my country; I love my family more."
I think it's a shame our system has gotten to the point where qualified candidiates are forced to make such an "either-or" choice. But I'm glad there are still people with enough self-awareness to make it wisely.
I'm Bill Lamb, and that's my…Point of View.