Daniels offers tough love for Romney
April 20th, 2012
09:45 AM ET
2 years ago

Daniels offers tough love for Romney

(CNN) – Republican Indiana Gov. Mitch Daniels had some advice for Mitt Romney this week, describing the likely Republican nominee's campaign for the White House as too negative.

"You have to campaign to govern, not just to win," Daniels said an in interview published Thursday with the Indianapolis Star.

– Follow the Ticker on Twitter: @PoliticalTicker

The governor, who's often cited as a potential Republican running mate for Romney, reportedly told the newspaper that "political victories that follow 'slash-and-burn' campaigns seldom lead to great accomplishments," referring to the already-bitter war underway between Romney and the president's re-election campaign.

"Spend the precious time and dollars explaining what's at stake and a constructive program to make life better," Daniels said. "And as I say, look at everything through the lens of folks who have yet to achieve."

The writer of the piece, Matthew Tully, wrote that Daniels took a pause, then continued with disappointment: "Romney doesn't talk that way."

He added: "You don't change one thing about the policies you advocate or your principles,' he said, noting instead that candidates should simply make clear how their policies would lift up those who are struggling."

His comments came the same day the two-term governor publicly endorsed Romney, more than a week after former Sen. Rick Santorum of Pennsylvania left the race, leaving a clear path for Romney to soon clinch the nomination.

Daniels has repeatedly pushed back at speculation that he could be tapped for the GOP vice presidential nominee. Last year Daniels considered his own bid for the GOP nomination before deciding against launching a campaign.

"Well it won't happen so we won't take the audience's time with it, but I'll be glad to be a No. 22 or wherever I can fit in in terms of supporting a winning campaign," Daniels said on Fox News Wednesday, shortly after making his endorsement.

Also see:

Romney releases March fundraising figures

Paul campaign touts campaign cash

RNC looks to Facebook for political edge

Biden says Democrats have chance in Arizona


Filed under: 2012 • 2012 VP Pick • Indiana • Mitch Daniels • Mitt Romney
soundoff (29 Responses)
  1. Rudy NYC

    "Spend the precious time and dollars explaining what's at stake and a constructive program to make life better," Daniels said. "And as I say, look at everything through the lens of folks who have yet to achieve."
    ------------------–
    I would love to see Mitt Romney try and follow that good advice. I don't think he's able to do it, especially the part about looking through a lens. Mitt Romney's wealth has allowed him to live a life inside of an artificially created bubble, one of his own design. Romney's out of touch. Who in their sensible mind would make the type of home improvments that he is making with the economy the way it is? George W. Bush certainly wouldn't have done it, and he was decently wealthy.

    April 20, 2012 09:52 am at 9:52 am |
  2. SUBS 4 VOTES/Dutch Bad Newz, VA/GROVER NORQUIST IS A ENEMY OF THE STATE

    I know conservafascists are wishing Daniels was the nominee rather than Willard. Albeit Daniels was Bush's budget director, at least he can see what kind of nasty campaign Willard is running. I think Daniels would have been a more formidable opponent for the President.

    April 20, 2012 09:55 am at 9:55 am |
  3. Natalie

    Simple, he attacks because there's no substance, no fresh strategies; just a rehash of the same failed policies. We don't need nor want that. G'bye Mittens in Nov. We won't have to listen to your phony compliments about trees and grass being the "right" color, etc. And you can retire those jeans that you thought would win us average Americans over to your side.

    April 20, 2012 10:08 am at 10:08 am |
  4. Blindersoff

    That's all Romney knows and that's how he made it this far is by stepping on and over, cheating, while double crossing, bearing false witness and in your face stealing in the name of the law. Someone need to tell Romney that, just because it's legal, doesn't make it morally right.

    April 20, 2012 10:11 am at 10:11 am |
  5. Peace

    "You have to campaign to govern, not just to win," Daniels said an in interview published Thursday with the Indianapolis Star.
    -----–
    The man is saying the truth, We have witnessed this during the primaries the way Romney crashed his opponents. It was all about winning, with whatever price and nothing more. He is still doing the same to the President. I do wonder those who are supporting Romney can not notice this!

    April 20, 2012 10:14 am at 10:14 am |
  6. Lynda/Minnesota

    Hold on a minute there, Mr. Daniels. Surely you of all people ought to know that Mittens has no intention of "governing". Good grief. He's already hyping himself up for his Grand Victory Tour. After the Mitt Romney grand strut, we're all on our own. You know who "we" are: working class, run of the mill Americans too busy living from paycheck to paycheck to be of much use for the likes of Romney. Not that you care either. It is because of your own failed policies that millions of us are where we are today. Might just as well add Portman to that list, too. Anyway, I suggest Mitt will do nothing more strenuous than wave his newest play-toy under all our noses...you and your GOPer nosed ideology included. Doubt me? Give it a try and vote Mitt Romney in. CookieGate, for as silly as it is being coined, was a huge eye-opener. Mitt's disdain was absolute comedy. Good God, the man was wringing his hands as if to suggest the cookies were "vermin" laden. Pretty much sums up Mitt's inner-self for those millions of us who fall beneath his scope human decency and fellowship.

    April 20, 2012 10:14 am at 10:14 am |
  7. Anthony

    Romney has no choice. He has nothing positive to run on. His plan for more tax cuts will increase the deficit by more than 3 trillion in the next ten years over current (that means Obama's) policy. He will give more tax cuts for the rich, even though the Bush tax cuts, in its 11th years, have not done much to create jobs.

    April 20, 2012 10:17 am at 10:17 am |
  8. NATHAN WIMBERLY

    Daniels follows the Koch lockstep as IN governor. Mitt McCain is doing what he is told to do too. Mitch didn't have the cajones to run so he needs to butt out.

    April 20, 2012 10:21 am at 10:21 am |
  9. Four and The Door

    "You have to campaign to govern, not just to win," Daniels said an in interview published Thursday with the Indianapolis Star.
    ________________________________________________________________________________________________
    There are a few helpful points in what Gov. Daniels is saying. Absolutely Mitt Romney's win in November will be better for people who are now struggling than what Obama brings. Not enough people understand that yet, but it is a job of Romney's campaign to broaden that message. What does Obama bring? More of the same and what makes it work the second time when it didn't work in 2009 or 2010? Mitt Romney brings a capability for lifting the entire economy. Not by driving the downgraded federal debt up more, but by allowing American businesses to prosper and create American jobs. That's the key. Bring opportunities to people. Raising taxes does nothing to help people who don't have opportunities in their lives.

    But the point Daniels misses is that none of these improvements happen until Romney wins. At this point, as Ford put it so bluntly... that's Job One. Win.

    April 20, 2012 10:30 am at 10:30 am |
  10. MikeTexoma

    Govenor Daniels is profoundly correct. Candidate Romney needs to talk to people about how his policies will lift up those who are struggling, and make their lives better. This negative campaign will only take him as far as intense dislike for Obama and intense racial prejudice among his political base will carry him, and I pray that alone will not be far enough. How willl he convince ordinary people who are going through hard times that he will help them find and realize their dreams?

    April 20, 2012 10:33 am at 10:33 am |
  11. Mikey

    Nice endorsement. "He stinks, but I have to endorse him because he's a Republican." LOL

    April 20, 2012 10:39 am at 10:39 am |
  12. The Real Truth and Nothing But the Real Truth

    Very good advice.... Obama's hidden taxes of high gas prices and sky rocketing food prices should concern everybody. And make sure the young people understand Obama is destroying their future with his insane deficits and debt. THEY will be paying for it years down the road.

    April 20, 2012 10:48 am at 10:48 am |
  13. S.B. Stein E.B. NJ

    Daniels is correct because the almost wholely negative ad campaign that Romney has run during the primaries won't work in the fall. It doesn't matter who has more money, being constantly negative isn't going to inspire people to go and vote for you. It just may inspire people to stay home. That is a bad thing. We need everyone to vote.

    April 20, 2012 10:49 am at 10:49 am |
  14. Matthew

    Exactly Mitch, Bishop Romneys message of everything sucks & everything Blows just aint cuttin it!!

    April 20, 2012 10:53 am at 10:53 am |
  15. Taran

    People are looking forward to cleaning out the white house in november. Romney is not the best candidate, but he will slow the country's progress toward a socialist state.

    April 20, 2012 10:54 am at 10:54 am |
  16. Matthew

    Its like he not Mormon, he be jehovah witness, doom & gloom & everything sucks & everything blows.

    April 20, 2012 10:55 am at 10:55 am |
  17. GI Joe

    Mitch Daniels - oh yeah - the money expert for W. In fact, Robmey is surrounding himself with a LOT of W's staff.

    We definitely do NOT need that again. Civil war will break out all over this country. Somolia will look like a vacation paradise.

    April 20, 2012 10:56 am at 10:56 am |
  18. XDOW

    Daniels is smart. You win campaigns by outlining what you intend to do as a President. Everyone that has won a Presidential election, since Lincoln, has done that and won. Their opponent would not.

    April 20, 2012 11:04 am at 11:04 am |
  19. george of the jungle

    so don't flip flop is what ge is saying. Romney waits to see which way the wind is blowing then makes his remarks. In an emercency who will he turn to ? he can;t make dicissions on his own. He won't come out against Nugent and offend the NRA He is a week candidate who will use everyones money to be president but has no clue how to govern. Look at the job he did in Mass. Obama 2012

    April 20, 2012 11:13 am at 11:13 am |
  20. weR4freedom

    Romney is Right for America!

    Believe in America.

    Romney 2012/2016

    April 20, 2012 11:21 am at 11:21 am |
  21. thomas

    Romney has a sense of entitlement that in itself is negative.

    April 20, 2012 11:21 am at 11:21 am |
  22. V in Chicago

    In other words Mitt, quit telling us everything you think is wrong about Obama and tell us what is right about you. What are some specifics we can base our decision on? Just telling me President Obama is a failure, tell me what exactly you would do differently and better. (Crickets . . . )

    April 20, 2012 11:26 am at 11:26 am |
  23. Jeff Brown in Jersey

    Time for some new hair plugs Mitch!

    April 20, 2012 11:27 am at 11:27 am |
  24. V in Chicago

    In other words Mitt, quit telling us everything you think is wrong about Obama and tell us what is right about you. What are some specifics we can base our decision on? Just telling me President Obama is a failure is not enough. Tell me what exactly you would do differently and better. (Crickets . . . )

    April 20, 2012 11:27 am at 11:27 am |
  25. d

    Wow a gop asking romney to tell people what he plans to do? amazing! but romney would be like walker and say one thing and do another...so either way negative and lies is pretty much the way of the gop...as daniels knows 1st hand....just ask the people of oh.

    April 20, 2012 11:28 am at 11:28 am |
1 2