With just 131 days until election day, Mitt Romney’s family is still urging him to run for president.
In a speech at the Aspen Ideas Festival, the 2012 Republican presidential nominee said that his wife and kids were concerned about how the Republican nominating contest played out, and urged him late in the primary to mount his own bid.
“I got an email from one of my sons yesterday saying ‘You’ve gotta get in dad, you’ve gotta get in,” Romney told moderator John Dickerson.
But the former governor said that he declined a last-minute campaign because of the costs that a race would take on his family and the likelihood that he would lose.
“It’s hard on family. It’s hard on your spouse sitting there in debates agonizing over what you’re going to say next or what your kids go through and your grandkids to go through,” Romney said.
He added: “I looked at it and I said I don’t think in good conscience I’m the right person to run as long as there was a better alternative who had a better chance of winning, rather. And once the nomination was locked up, I didn’t see a chance of winning that was realistic.”
As it became increasingly clear that Trump would lock up the nomination, many top conservative intellectuals and writers urged Romney to mount a third party bid. Weekly Standard editor William Kristol met with Romney in person earlier this year about a third race for the White House, and has regularly contacted the governor about running.
But on Wednesday, Romney insisted that there was still no chance that he would run.
“The door is closed unless both candidates come up to me and say please save them,” Romney said. “I can’t imagine the circumstances that would lead me to be in the race.”
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