Washington (CNN) – Indiana Gov. Mitch Daniels chose not to join the Republican race for the presidential nomination in 2012, but weighed in on front-runners and the political landscape Sunday.
“I don’t have anything original to say,” about the GOP field, Daniels said on CNN’s “State of the Union,” but noted, “the two governors … for the most part seem to be the predominant personalities in the race,” referring to Texas Gov. Rick Perry and former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney.
And he sees 2012 as an opportunity to capture the White House from a “desperate” president.
Daniels, who served as political director for President Reagan, wouldn’t jump to conclusions about the viability of Perry’s presidential prospects, though Perry has been scrutinized for his stance on immigration, blunt remarks and debate performances.
“I think it’s way too early,” Daniels said. “There are so many of these [debates] - too many, maybe.”
“I’d cut him a little slack, give him a little time.”
But right now, the second-term Hoosier governor would like to hear more about “the things that have a lot of zeroes attached” from the presidential pack.
“This president is clearly in very desperate political shape and seems more desperate every day,” he said.
"The GOP nominee is playing as the default option…that is a missed opportunity.”
“It is a mathematical fact that we are headed for debt levels that we cannot sustain,” Daniels argued. “It is very clear that nations that go past a certain point of debt do not recover.”
And he warned that “the promise of America” is starting to fray around the edges but proposed one method of avoiding damage from the nation’s increasing debt.
“They’ll have to stop sending checks to the wealthiest Americans,” Daniels said.
He advised, “The sooner both sides start concentrating on that problem, the sooner we can get on the way to an economic recovery.”
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