May 17th, 2011
04:45 PM ET

Who'll fill void left by Trump and Huckabee in '12 GOP race?



FROM CNN's Jack Cafferty:

The Republicans may have the keys to victory in 2012 in their grasp, but it's a question of getting the horses out of the barn, onto the track and into the race.

So far, the Republican presidential field is awful. It's no wonder President Barack Obama is smiling. And it's not just getting bin Laden that has him grinning. The economy is starting to recover. And the Republicans resemble “The Gang That Couldn't Shoot Straight.”

Former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee and billionaire real estate developer-turned-reality TV star Donald Trump have both said they're out. Huckabee and Trump had shown more promise in the polls than some of the other names running or considering a run.

So, who will fill the void?

There is Mitt Romney - already lost. Newt Gingrich - not happening. Sarah Palin - please, get serious. There is Ron Paul, a man with great ideas about how to solve our problems, but serious questions about electability. Then there's Tim Pawlenty and Michele Bachmann, both with potential to score big with evangelicals, but neither seem to be scoring points with the rest of the electorate.

That brings us to Mitch Daniels, the governor of Indiana, who almost everyone agrees would be a formidable challenger to Obama. And New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie. Christie says he's not "ready to run for president," despite the fact that Republicans all over the country are begging him to get in the race. And Daniels, who says he hasn't made up his mind yet. Daniels also says he could beat Obama…and he might be right.

It's pretty much a lead-pipe cinch the rest of the Republicans mentioned can't, except maybe for Christie.

Here’s my question to you: Who is likely to fill the void left by Donald Trump and Mike Huckabee in the 2012 GOP field?

Interested to know which ones made it on air?

B. in Indianapolis:
I believe that Mitch Daniels will announce within the next few weeks that he will run for the presidency in 2012. If he does, the Republican Party will come together behind his candidacy, as will moderate Independents. Daniels would be a challenge for Obama with his message of fiscal discipline.

Donnie in Bay St. Louis, Mississippi:
Ron Paul, Mitt Romney, and Tim Pawlenty, in that order, with Ron Paul the only one who might be able to win the Independent and undecided vote. A race between President Obama and anyone other than Ron Paul would be like watching grass grow. Although I would pay to see the Sarah Palin or Michele Bachmann vs. Obama debate. Talk about must-see TV.

There is an entire brigade of lunatics still left. Give it a week and see. They will come out of the woodwork, some of them dumber than Palin or Bachmann. The GOP never fails to amaze.

Ann in Morgan Hill, California:
Chris Christie? Are you mad? The people of New Jersey cannot wait to get rid of him! Apparently the Republicans see something in him that no one in his own state sees. To them, he is another tea bagger who snuck in while the Democrats stayed home in 2010. There is no way he can beat Obama. Maybe Huntsman will come in as a dark horse.

Jon Huntsman will be the Republican candidate for president in 2012. He is the only Republican that will have the appeal to win back all of the moderates that swung to Obama in the last election. He has incredible appeal, strong financial backing and has been very successful in his positions as ambassador to China and governor of Utah.

Dave in Nashville:
What void, Jack? A blowhard gambler and trust fund baby coupled with a man of the so-called cloth had never gotten in to qualify as backing out. Both were teasing their television ratings for the almighty buck. Glad they're gone.

Filed under: 2012 Election • Donald Trump • GOP • GOP Ticket • Mike Huckabee • Republican Party • Republicans
soundoff (230 Responses)
  1. Balboa from Huntsville Alabama

    I would say that the Republicans are in serious trouble but I feel that Romney has the experience and I would support him regardless of his religion because it isn't about religion it is about what can you do for this country and what you cannot do for your country.

    May 17, 2011 at 1:46 pm |
  2. Gordon NJ

    Homer Simpson

    May 17, 2011 at 1:48 pm |
  3. Larry Feierstein-Denver

    You call that a void? its a hiccup. Right now there is no "frontrunner" or "rearrunner". The Republican nominee will not be one of the "usual suspects", but an unknown who emerges just in time for primary season.

    May 17, 2011 at 1:48 pm |
  4. Tom in Desoto, Tx

    If you listen to Newt, he's a changed man. Don't judge him on his past he says. So I guess he's now a blank slate, a masculine version of Mother Theresa. The sun will now rise in the west, zebras will change their stripes, water will flow from the oceans to the mountains. Mr. Sweetness and light. Yea, right.

    May 17, 2011 at 2:04 pm |
  5. Hannah Burke

    I think Mitt Romney will be able to overcome his "Healthcare flip flop" and to me he is the only viable candidate for the GOP. I wish Ron Paul run as an independent rather than for the GOP, he is not GOP material but he is a good candidate nontheless.

    May 17, 2011 at 2:07 pm |
  6. Greg in Arkansas

    To fill the "amusement" void left by the departure of Huckabee and Trump...Beavis and Butthead would be MY first choice to join the "cast of clowns" that are currently hustling for votes.

    May 17, 2011 at 2:09 pm |
  7. Lou Mullin

    Someone just like them. Name me one Republican who is a leader who wants the problems of being the President. No one can straighten it out because Congress is full of money-hungry men who want lobbyist who will pay their way to being re-elected. Both Trump and Huckabee like money so God told them not to run. Need I say more?

    May 17, 2011 at 2:14 pm |
  8. Kevin in CA

    Homer Simpson and Alfred E. Newman ... they're better choices actually.

    May 17, 2011 at 2:17 pm |
  9. Barbara Leavitt

    Jack, that's funny~well with Trump the void he leaves is one where there won't be near as many laughs. I did have respect for Huckabee up until
    he started spouting off about Obama. The Republicans do not have one
    person that is above these conspiracies theory's.....none will denounce them. Which is an embarrassment for most Americans and should be for them. So I guess the void with be less laughter.

    Henderson Nevada

    May 17, 2011 at 2:17 pm |
  10. Ed from Texas

    I don't know, but maybe someone will develop a TV reality show where contestants are eliminated over the course of the season and the winner becomes the nominee for their party for president.

    May 17, 2011 at 2:21 pm |
  11. pat, Idaho

    That's a tough question, how about Mickey Mouse

    May 17, 2011 at 2:21 pm |
  12. Harold from Anchorage-,AK

    Can a void fill a void?

    May 17, 2011 at 2:21 pm |
  13. Peter

    There's a void.???

    May 17, 2011 at 2:25 pm |
  14. Russ in PA

    Ron Paul, as he is the only one running from either party that fills the void in values, integrity, and a belief in our personal freedoms.

    Ron Paul in 2012...

    May 17, 2011 at 2:29 pm |
  15. Carl


    In my opinion, it doesn't matter one bit, who replaces Huckabee, they are all politically corrupt and worthless.

    May 17, 2011 at 2:30 pm |
  16. Kim Smith

    If a Republican does not run for office it's not a void, it's a blessing. But not to worry, there are plenty more wackos out there, and we know they can't resist the opportunity to show the world their undeniable wit and intelligence.

    May 17, 2011 at 2:34 pm |
  17. ken, atlantic city, nj

    The void wil be filled by romney who is a corporotist like obama. Either way main street will lose again. The only way to end corporate dictatorship and endless wars is to elect ron paul, but the u.s. voters are too dumb and too afraid to vote for him thanks to the media and talking heads.

    May 17, 2011 at 2:35 pm |
  18. Alex in Bremerton, WA

    Don't forget Gingrich! He imploded any chance at the nomination by calling Ryan's heartless budget plan too radical. If the king of hyperbole calls something radical it must be really out there! The GOP is self-destructing before our eyes. Heh... heh... heh! BTW, it is a good thing that we didn't amend our Constitution so that Arnold Schwarzenegger could run for president! Yet ANOTHER "family values" Republican schtuping a staffer!

    May 17, 2011 at 2:38 pm |
  19. Larry from Georgetown, Tx

    Bachman, Palin and Bozo the Clown. It should provide great entertainment and hopefully the American voter will realize that the GOP is in favor of supporting the wealthy and big oil while the vast majority of us will support them and die in their wars.

    May 17, 2011 at 2:39 pm |
  20. Bryan, Colorado

    The void will be filled by the rest of the jackwagons the GOP has running. Minus 1 evangelical and 1 billionaire realestate mogul. That leaves 1 mormon and 1 washed up house speaker thats been married as many times as The Donald has filed bankruptsy. The rest who cares.

    May 17, 2011 at 2:42 pm |
  21. Ray in Knoxville

    Oh, there are plenty of clowns left in the car, Jack.

    May 17, 2011 at 2:42 pm |
  22. Loren, Chicago

    One of the seven dwarves? There's too many Republicans dipping their toes in the water, but that's what happens when there is no natural leader or heir apparent to become the focus, you're left with a shoving match to take center stage. Personally, it might be nice to see if what they claim Mitch Daniels has done in Indiana can translate to a national stage. It would be nice to have a President who actually does something, rather than one who just talks.

    May 17, 2011 at 2:44 pm |
  23. Doug, NJ

    It doesn't matter because no one from the GOP or the Tea-Party has a message that resonates with the vast majority of mainstream Americans. None of them have a plan for to improve anything, including jobs, taxes, trade, housing or how to get out of two incredibly expensive wars in the Middle East. Obama's not perfect, but he stopped the sinking economy, helped create over 1 million jobs and killed Bin Laden. Why else do you think the GOP field is so weak? Would you really waste your time and hundreds of millions of dollars to run against that record? A smart Republican would wait 4 more years...and most of them are.

    May 17, 2011 at 2:44 pm |
  24. Brad, Portland, OR

    A Sarah Palin-Michelle Bachmann ticket, of course!

    May 17, 2011 at 2:47 pm |
  25. Donald Ainsworth

    Thats a laughable question Jack! Huckabee I liked but he knows he has no chance to win so he made a good choice to not run. Donald Trump is a joke! He used the media for publicity! His Father, where he got all his money, I think if still living would say "Donald your Fired"! Don from Wapakoneta, Ohio

    May 17, 2011 at 2:48 pm |
  26. Annie, Atlanta

    Well, we need another birther clown and one of those "God told me not to do it" folks, so that narrows the field to Bachmann and Palin. And by the way, they're interchangeable in both categories. I often wonder what Dwight Eisenhower would think of the disgraceful circus act that is the Republican Party these days.

    May 17, 2011 at 2:51 pm |
  27. Paul, New Port Richey, Fl

    Sarah Palin, of course, Jack. I'll bet this answer really wadded up your skivvies didn't it?

    May 17, 2011 at 2:58 pm |
  28. Joe

    The vulture waiting in the wings is Christie. He feels he is entitled and much like the other narcissistic politicians – is ready to jump at the first proposal for a so called "outsider" (although really an insider in the manipulative financial world), to join the 2012 presidential race.
    Joe, Binghamton, NY

    May 17, 2011 at 3:01 pm |
  29. Conor in Chicago

    Despair not Cafferty. There are plenty of Republican rich kids who had everything handed to them, who want to take everything away from you to give to people like them, who think the Earth is 4,000 years old and that dinosaurs and humanity lived together at the dawn of time. This "void" you speak of will not be around long.

    May 17, 2011 at 3:01 pm |
  30. Cy Gardner

    I guess they'd insist on seeing Baron Munchausen's birth certificate. cy arlington, va

    May 17, 2011 at 3:01 pm |
  31. Jayne

    Is Alfred E. Neuman available?

    May 17, 2011 at 3:03 pm |
  32. Bizz, Quarryville Pennsylvania

    In Trump's case it would be Sarah Palin because she is the female version of Trump. She is thin skin and attacks anyone who proves her wrong. I will miss Trump because he gave me a lot of belly laughs just like Sarah Palin. As far as Huckabee goes that is a harder one. The religious right will have to find another candidate

    May 17, 2011 at 3:09 pm |
  33. Rick, Medina, OH


    Whoever it is needs to materialize and get grounded very soon. It takes time to raise the hundreds of millions of dollars required to be competitive in a national election. In our history, only a dozen or so elections that include a sitting president seeking re-election have been truly competitive. We'll likely see a 'sacrificial lamb' next year, with serious contenders preparing for 2016. (Think Chris Christie or Michael Bloomberg, among others.)

    Medina, OH

    May 17, 2011 at 3:09 pm |
  34. Chandler in Rockaway, NJ

    What void? The Republican field is still a herd of sheep.

    May 17, 2011 at 3:10 pm |
  35. Brigid

    Trump was really "in the 2012 GOP field"? No. He was just getting the press to give him a lot of free publicity. I can't believe you all bought it!
    Scottsdale, Arizona

    May 17, 2011 at 3:11 pm |
  36. bob z fr ,pa.

    danial's and christythat is my picks

    May 17, 2011 at 3:12 pm |
  37. Gerry

    The Republican field is narrowing. Trying to find a candidate that hasn't had marital indiscretions and doesn't suffer from flip/flop creates a real challenge. That void might be filled by Michell Bachmann.

    May 17, 2011 at 3:16 pm |

    Michelle Bachman & SArah Palin please, pretty please!
    The other nasty people

    Dedicated to President Obama
    Virginia Grandma

    May 17, 2011 at 3:18 pm |
  39. Tina Tx

    Your best friend Sarah P.

    May 17, 2011 at 3:23 pm |
  40. Ed from California

    It really doesn't matter who they put up.....no one is going to beat Obama anyway. Newt, Palin, The Huckster are in for the money , from their PAC's! Or, what they can suck out of old Rupert Murdock. American is waking up to the fact the Kochplicans want to steal our Social Security and Medicare money and give it to their political contributors, or Wall St.. I firmly believe after 2012, the Kochplican Party, and it's members will be a endangered species. Mr. Boehner, "Where are the JOBS!!!!!"

    May 17, 2011 at 3:24 pm |
  41. John Moore - New Britain, PA

    No one can replace Trump, thankfully there is only one like him. Since he was never a real candidate a replacement isn't needed. Huckabee has stayed out of the limelight so he was not looking like a candidate. Difficult to say where his followers may go, Ron Paul could be the man but he is getting a little old to be a serious candidate.

    May 17, 2011 at 3:26 pm |
  42. Bob Kobs

    There is an entire brigade of lunatics still left. Give it a week and see. They will come out of the woodwork, some of them dumber than Palin or Bachmann. The GOP never fails to amaze.

    May 17, 2011 at 3:28 pm |
  43. Judy

    A Void????? For whom, the media circus? Both of these guys are a disgrace to themselves. Can't imagine what they would do to this country.

    May 17, 2011 at 3:30 pm |
  44. Gordon

    There was no void to fill. Neither was going to run in the first place. Trump was hyping his failed show... and succeeded. Like him or not, he's astute in the ways of TV. Huckabee wasn't going to run because as Lawrence O'Donnell so clearly reported weeks before, Roger Ailes would have dismissed him from Fox News as he did Santorum and Gingrich. Huckabee parlayed his non-campaign into loads of publicity for his show and his repeal the health care act appeal.

    The media was sucked in and won't admit it.

    May 17, 2011 at 3:31 pm |
  45. Pete in Georgia

    It's May, 2011.
    Who cares at this eary date ??
    With voters' attention spans of a 7 yr. old, it makes little difference at this stage.


    May 17, 2011 at 3:32 pm |
  46. Thomas Beer

    Hopefully, a candidate that has a real chance of actually winning.

    May 17, 2011 at 3:36 pm |
  47. Jane (Minnesota)

    There are so many "capable" candidates that can step right into that role.......Michele Bachmann comes to mind right away. By the way, Jack, "capable" is NOT a compliment.

    May 17, 2011 at 3:38 pm |
  48. Adam Mangold

    Nobody can fill the void left by Trump.
    In my opinion Jack, the GOP may have candidates who say they're strong but like Obama have a weakspot. We saw this with Newt Gingrich who is urging people to judge him on his "abilities. Not my previous actions."

    However it seems like that isn't going well. Romney, Ron Paul, Herman Cain, etc. all have a flaw. I'm personally an Independant and doing everything for the people of the United States in their best interest is my policy. They all leave the same void, which is we may have to re-elect Obama unless a strong contender comes along.

    May 17, 2011 at 3:44 pm |
  49. Cliff Glass - Rego Park, New York


    Weren't there Three Stooges ? Maybe Moe will decide to run.

    May 17, 2011 at 3:44 pm |
  50. Jeff in Bishop, Georgia

    Mr. Cafferty, I've been sportin' my Herman Cain for President T-shirt for about a month now.

    May 17, 2011 at 3:50 pm |
  51. brojake

    well jack we know it's not gingrich! next.

    May 17, 2011 at 3:51 pm |
  52. Jonathan J

    New York, NY

    Mitt Romney will no doubt take over the GOP. Even though I'm a Democrat, Romney is the most qualified and most professional of the contenders. Sadly, I know that Sarah Palin will take up airtime with her idiotic slander.

    May 17, 2011 at 3:57 pm |

    Tampa, Fl Why not have American Idol select the next candidates? They have a bigger share of America's attention. Couldn't do much worse either.

    May 17, 2011 at 3:58 pm |
  54. bob in florida

    Easy question Jack, there is no void to be filled.

    May 17, 2011 at 4:01 pm |
  55. Joe CE

    What void? Neither had any important following.

    May 17, 2011 at 4:02 pm |
  56. dan mcnally

    Palin and Bachman. Now that the weird wing faction is looking for another provacatur to give voice to nonsense, those two lasses should have an open field. Will they cannabalize each other, I wonder.

    Dan NY

    May 17, 2011 at 4:02 pm |
  57. Wilhelm von Nord Bach

    fill the Huckabee / Trump void, Jack?

    I would say Michele Bachmann for the Iowa caucus / South Carolina primary "Christian" crowd that would have voted for Huckabee.

    as for "The Donald", Newt Gingrich has almost as big an ego and the demonstrated ability to peddle baloney like Trump.

    May 17, 2011 at 4:03 pm |
  58. Jon

    Trump leaves no void and because he can get as much attention whether he runs or not. Huckabee is a good candidate but there are many in this field who fit the bill. It's possible that Herman Cain could get both sets of constituents. He's a fiscal and social conservative, a prominent businessman and a non-politician who is also plain-spoken and unafraid of making waves.

    Lima, Ohio

    May 17, 2011 at 4:04 pm |
  59. Mr. D

    Who will fill the total "void" in the Republican party when it comes to viable presidential candidates for 2012? The Republicans better be looking under rocks to find someone or Obama will have a cakewalk in 2012.

    May 17, 2011 at 4:05 pm |
  60. Dave in Phoenix

    Did those two leaving the race create a void? The whole republican party is a void of idiocy. The party of mass distraction will never focus on the issues that will fix our country.

    May 17, 2011 at 4:08 pm |
  61. Adam Mangold

    Nobody can fill the void left by Trump.
    In my opinion Jack, the GOP may have candidates who say they're strong but like Obama, have a weakspot. We saw this with Newt Gingrich who is urging people to Judge him on his "abilities. Not my previous actions."

    However it seems like that isn't going well. Romney, Ron Paul, Herman Cain, etc. all have a flaw. I'm personally an Independant and doing everything for the people of the United States in their best interest is my policy. They all leave the same void, which is we may have to re – elect Obama unless a strong contender comes along.

    Written by Adam Mangold from Toms River, New Jersey

    May 17, 2011 at 4:09 pm |
  62. Jim S

    jack, it's far too early to tell about that. I suspect that some newcomer will emerge between now and a time when all candidates are known. I wouldn't imagine that Trump would be able to contribute much in terms of followers, but Huckabee probably will among evangelicals and extreme right wingers. If the Republicans don't find some legitimatally viable candidates, they won't have a chance in 2012.

    May 17, 2011 at 4:12 pm |
  63. Rich McKinney, Texas

    The field is wide open Jack and with that being said there are plenty of unworthy politician want to bee's that will fill that void. The one thing we can always count on is politicians will open their mouth one time too many to speak on something they know absolutely nothing about and when that happens a foot is bound to end up there sooner or later. It is human nature to want to sound superior and as a politician the trick is to get enough people to believe it even if it isn't true.

    May 17, 2011 at 4:17 pm |
  64. Adam Simi Valley, CA

    No one. The republicans are cowards. No one who actually thinks they have a shot at being President wants to taint there chances by potentially losing to Obama. It's a sad state when arguably the worst President in history, won't veen face a serious challenge for re-election because they are too scared they will hurt their future chances. Our country is sinking fast. The crowd in Washington sound like crew members of the titanic arguing about the size of the thimbles to use to bailout the water. We need to clean house if America is to survive.

    May 17, 2011 at 4:20 pm |
  65. Weldon from Newmarket ON Canada

    I guess this is where Sarah Palin fits in !!!

    May 17, 2011 at 4:21 pm |
  66. Paulette in Dallas,PA

    Trump and Huckabee are out and Gingrich has adultry problems along with unpopular comments about Medicare. My guess is that this is the best shot Romney has at the Presidency but he won't win. If Obama doesn't drop the ball anytime soon he will be reelected.

    May 17, 2011 at 4:21 pm |
  67. Bud Rupert

    If Huntsman can get out there and establish some brand recognition he could be a good competitor.

    May 17, 2011 at 4:23 pm |

    Probably just some other goofballs.

    May 17, 2011 at 4:25 pm |
  69. David Scott Doherty

    Jack I believe the void existed when there was the possibilty of their running, not after they dropped out. When the GOP has to search for a qualified person to run for president you have to wonder what is the overall substance of the party. It was said Trump enjoys being a tycoon to much to be president, which shows you how the GOP thinks, as long as I got mine, the hell with the rest, I think tycoon was subsituted for buffoon.
    Dave from NH.

    May 17, 2011 at 4:27 pm |
  70. Alie Jalloh

    Sarah Palin And Rip Van Winkle, will be a reasonable choice.

    May 17, 2011 at 4:31 pm |
  71. Derrick

    Probably the first one that turns Christiananity into hate mongering, Stereotyping groups of poor and minority people and lying about why they're doing it....Oh wait they all do it.

    ps Romney doesn't do it but he's an Independent in GOP clothing

    May 17, 2011 at 4:32 pm |
  72. Tom Mytoocents Fort Lauderdale, Florida

    I wasn't aware there was a void. My Mother often said "An empty cab pulled up and he got out"...

    May 17, 2011 at 4:34 pm |
  73. Sarah

    There's only one honest man running ... he has consistent integrity ... he has worked in the medical field, he spent 5 years in the military, and he has studied economics thoroughly. He is over qualified for the job as president. Of course, I'm speaking of Ron Paul. Unfortunately, people are demonizing him for being critical of Obama's raid in Pakistan. But I understand what he is worried about… we may have started another war where soldiers may died and money will be borrowed and spent.... How many Americans have to die for this....

    May 17, 2011 at 4:34 pm |
  74. Alie Jalloh

    Sean Hannity and Sarah Palin, will suffice.

    May 17, 2011 at 4:34 pm |
  75. Dennis north carolina

    I think the re publican's can replace the void with alot of trump want-a bes because that is what the republican party is made of in the whole!

    May 17, 2011 at 4:35 pm |
  76. Richard/NH

    Gee Jack,
    Given that the GOP = Tax Breaks for The Rich, I Got Mine, Screw You, If It Ain't White, It Ain't Right, I think there will be plenty of candidates to toss their hat into the ring.

    May 17, 2011 at 4:39 pm |
  77. Peg in NY

    Hopefully no one. We have seen enough of this year's carnival sideshow.

    May 17, 2011 at 4:39 pm |
  78. Bill in Portales, NM

    Huchabee has a strong 10% support as a fundamentalist and as a celebrity. A televangelist? On the other hand, the republicans need not be concerned at losing Huchabee's supporters to Obama.

    Trump has a strong 10% support as a businessman and as a celebrity. Can the republicans count on retaining these voters? Trump is easier to replace, but retaining Trump's voters is more difficult.

    Huckabee and Trump are alike in having supporters that make them strong minority candidates. However, a majority of republicans will neither support Huckabee nor Trump. So their replacement will not and should not be an identical replacement.

    Here's my list: Bill Gates, Governor Perry of Texas, Pat Robertson, the Governor of Louisiana, Kay Bailey Hutchinson, Elizabeth Dole, Condalisa Rice,... Whoever the replacement(s) is (if not exact) will probably be the republicans' presidencial candidate in 2012. A dark horse that I am not thinking of.

    May 17, 2011 at 4:41 pm |
  79. Rick McDaniel

    Probably Daniels.

    I think he will run, as his fiscal record in Indiana puts him in the best position to help the country, in spite of his following the bigoted party platform.

    By next year, the financial condition of the country, is going to be very dire indeed, and we will need all the fiscal ability possible, in the WH.

    Certainly, what we have now, is among the worst fiscal skills, in history.

    May 17, 2011 at 4:53 pm |

    Who is likely to fill the void left by Donald Trump and Mike Huckabee in the 2012 GOP field?

    Two more crackpots like Michelle Bachmann and Newt Gingrich.

    Roseville CA

    May 17, 2011 at 4:59 pm |
  81. Steve, Clifton, VA

    The only void left by Trump is the missing material that he was providing to late night TV comedians. Because Mike Huckabee only placed a single toe into the race, I don't know that his indecisiveness ever really served as a place holder and therefore would not leave a noticeable void. That takes us right back to where we originally started. A very light weight field of candidates for the Republican primary.

    May 17, 2011 at 5:04 pm |
  82. Anthony J. Frascino from Swedesboro, NJ

    The answer is pretty obvious. The republicans are running on a platform of slash and burn by gutting social programs, falling on their sword for the rich and Big business, king

    May 17, 2011 at 5:06 pm |
  83. Thom Richer

    VOID? You've got to be kidding!!!

    Thom Richer
    Negaunee, MI

    May 17, 2011 at 5:06 pm |
  84. Cee, La

    The GOP is in t-r-o-u-b-l-e.......they have an abysmal group of candidates......all they have to offer is "hasbeens" and " never gonna beens"....the GOP has been hi jacked by extremists,and no one else need apply.......

    May 17, 2011 at 5:06 pm |
  85. andyz Lynn, MA

    Bozo the clown! The hair is similar!

    May 17, 2011 at 5:07 pm |
  86. Steve

    I have been watching this whole thing play out from home (Canada). There is not a "mainstream" qualified candidate for the Republicans. They all play to a narrow constituency within the party. Just the bloody airtime that the blowhard Trump got is very telling...I don't think that they have identified their candidate for this 2012 cycle as yet, at least one that would stand a chance.

    May 17, 2011 at 5:10 pm |
  87. Matt from Munster, IN

    Mitch Daniels will be a breath of fresh air for the Republican field. He doesn't demonize President Obama by questioning his patriotism. Nor does he have the baggage that Mitt Romney or Newt Gingrich have. He lets his accomplishments speak for themselves. Governor Daniels is a fiscal hawk who can truly make America great again through job creation and deficit reduction.

    May 17, 2011 at 5:14 pm |
  88. stacy

    tim-paw , newt grig i guess

    May 17, 2011 at 5:14 pm |
  89. jimmy in greenville nc

    I think Newt will fill the void........temporarily. And then he will quit too.

    May 17, 2011 at 5:17 pm |
  90. MNResident

    The old expression, "You can't beat something with nothing" applies here. I used to think that the American people deserved better than what we get when it comes to our choices for elective office, but then I look around America, see who the electorate is, and declare as the old cartoon character Pogo said, "We have met the enemy, and he is us..... "

    May 17, 2011 at 5:17 pm |
  91. Karl in Flint

    Republicans seem to be having trouble finding their backsides with both hands lately. With the selection of GOP candidates becoming more of a joke every day, how about replacing Martin and Lewis, that’s Mike Huckabee and Donald Trump, with “I Love Lucy”? Ricky and Fred played by Mitt Romney and Ron Paul and Lucy and Ethel played by Michelle Bachmann and Sara Palin. Those are my guesses. The rest you mentioned are still in the “who are they” category.

    May 17, 2011 at 5:20 pm |
  92. Steve Batts Edna, Kansas

    Well let me thing? with the act he preformed the last two weeks , is Bozo the Clown busy? When the political arena stoups to this level, maybe it is time for a Military Coup, I am sure I saw the statue of Old Abe crying.

    May 17, 2011 at 5:21 pm |
  93. Jerry Johns Creek, GA

    There is a phenomenal candidate already in the race but he is not getting much press coverage and that is Herman Cain. A very successful businessman and a radio talk show host prior to running in this election who is not of the genre usually associated with conservatives, i.e. he makes a lot of sense. The other candidate I would like to see step forward is General McChrystal but he would have to stay clear of Rolling Stoned. America needs a leader not a speech maker. The current list of candidates are dismally lacking in demonstrated leadership capabilities as is our President. No Gingrich is not a leader we saw what he did when he thought he had a Mandate he demonstrated he fits the definition of a narcissist and not a leader.

    May 17, 2011 at 5:24 pm |
  94. Gigi Oregon

    Donald Trump and Mike Huckabee left a void...how did I miss that. Daniels who? Every time I think of the fact, I voted for John McCain I shutter, to think my vote could have put Palin near the White house. When you find a Republican that will truthful admit they ran the country into debt and raised the debt ceiling anytime they needed, I'll look at your candidate. All your mentioned above candidates can't keep their facts straight. The Republican party the last two years has spent more time debating the birth place of President Obama and against health care, we the people asked for, then finding jobs.

    I will be watching how much the Republican party gets done in the next two years cooperating with "the people", not with the religious right and corporate America.

    May 17, 2011 at 5:26 pm |
  95. Joseph Leff

    How about Glen Beck? Wouldn't that satisfy the Tea Party "geniuses?"

    Joe in Delray Beach, Florida

    May 17, 2011 at 5:27 pm |
  96. Terry- Greensburg, IN "Hoosier Hillbilly"

    Who is likely to fill the((( void))) left by Donald Trump and Mike Huckabee in the 2012 GOP field?

    void-def-having no legal force or effect; not legally binding or enforceable. 2. useless; ineffectual; vain. 3. devoid; destitute

    There is Ron Paul, a man with great ideas about how to solve our problems, I'd go with him. An honest person that has ground solid ideas concerning this Nation, why not?
    That brings us to Mitch Daniels, the governor of Indiana, who almost everyone agrees would be a formidable challenger to President Obama. Daniels, who says he hasn't made up his mind yet. Daniels also says he could beat President Obama…and he might be right.
    NOW! ~~ being a "Hoosier Hillbilly" where do (you) *Jack* think my vote would go? 'U' ever noticed how much persuasion a president has over his own state? "My man Mitch" would make an excellent president, that's why he won't get it – the country has gone "MAD!"

    May 17, 2011 at 5:28 pm |
  97. Phil, Georgia

    This is the Republican Problem; can't nobody have an original thought that challenges or disagrees with their colt. Newt, Boener, whoever disagrees or feels their own heart is quickly wipped and bought back into the colt.

    How can you ever grow if your not allowed to think of new thoughts.

    May 17, 2011 at 5:32 pm |
  98. DonnieH. Bay St. Louis, Ms.

    Ron Paul, Mitt Romney, and Tim Pawlenty. In that order with Ron Paul the ONLY one who might be able to win the Independent and undecided vote.
    A race between President Obama and anyone other than Ron Paul would be like watching grass grow. Although I would pay to see the Palin or Bachman vs. Obama debate. Talk about must see tv...

    May 17, 2011 at 5:35 pm |
  99. Kim Smith

    In this void, this sweet silence, one can almost hear the death rattle of the self-serving Republican Party wheezing its last breath. And it's about time.

    May 17, 2011 at 5:35 pm |
  100. Ralph Spyer

    The void ,a cut throat ,winner take all developer or a religious bible reading scripture [ world was created in 7 day nut cake ] My God this is the party of Lincoln . Nixon open China to the world, Regan ended the cold war. Ron Paul is the only one with passion that is not incompetent

    May 17, 2011 at 5:38 pm |
  101. Dariel, Santa Rosa, CA.

    How can anybody consider a Republican candidate running for any office at all?
    The ones in the limelight have totally made fools of themselves, along with the entire Republican Party as well as it's counterpart, "THE TEA PARTY".

    I'm a staunch INDEPENDENT.

    May 17, 2011 at 5:38 pm |
  102. Jack - Lancaster, Ohio

    Mr. Cafferty:

    Not to worry, the vacuum inside the D.C. beltway is so nearly perfect that it is bound to suck any number of available airheads into leadership. The tacit policy has become, let no vacuum be unattended !

    May 17, 2011 at 5:38 pm |
  103. dave in nashville

    What void Jack? A blowhard gambler and trust fund baby coupled with a man of the so-called cloth had never gotten in to qualify as backing out.
    BOTH were teasing their television ratings for the almighty buck, glad they're gone. And Huck never plugs in his bass guitar either, but Donald definitely plugs his hair every morning.

    May 17, 2011 at 5:40 pm |
  104. Sean in Michigan

    I don't know about Huckabee, but a replacement for Trump should be easy enough. Go to any circus, visit the side show and look for the freak. I'm sure they'd be willing....and maybe even a better candidate!

    May 17, 2011 at 5:41 pm |
  105. Ron Pfeifer

    No one. I can't find one person out there who has the charisma, experience, or support to mobilize effective opposition to the President.

    May 17, 2011 at 5:43 pm |
  106. Bill

    RON PAUL!!!!

    May 17, 2011 at 5:43 pm |
  107. mike

    [X] Ron Paul

    May 17, 2011 at 5:43 pm |
  108. Jr.


    May 17, 2011 at 5:44 pm |
  109. Donald in New Mexico

    What is the fascination with the 1/2 term Republican Governors. The void is so deep that very thin resumes are front runners.

    May 17, 2011 at 5:46 pm |
  110. smart aleck

    I saw the Kentucky Derby and one thing I know about horses is that you don't use keys to start them. You gotta get a whip thing and smack em upside the rib cage, which I believe would be a fine image to present to the public for any Republican candidate ....

    May 17, 2011 at 5:46 pm |
  111. Josh

    A sock puppet with a funny hat would be the GOPs best bet for 2012. The other alleged contenders are too crazy to be a serious candidate.

    May 17, 2011 at 5:47 pm |
  112. Bruce

    What about Dan Quayle? I used to hear conservatives in the party defend his abilities and intellect, and he certainly fits in with the party on most issues.

    May 17, 2011 at 5:47 pm |
  113. Ken in NC

    He left a void?

    May 17, 2011 at 5:48 pm |
  114. Chris in Portland

    The biological sciences are making remarkable breakthroughs every day. Don't dismiss the possibility of a tanned, ready and rested Nixon in 2012 sneaker campaign.

    May 17, 2011 at 5:49 pm |
  115. BJ Blinston

    the best contender is not announced. Matter of fact he or she is probably not even on the radar yet.

    May 17, 2011 at 5:50 pm |
  116. Elizabeth Allen

    I would like to see Condoleeza Rice run. I think she has all the qualifications not only to beat Obama but to be a very good president.

    May 17, 2011 at 5:51 pm |
  117. Tom in AZ

    Chris Christie has the charisma to beat President Obama. While Mitt Romney is qualified, his personality is flat. Sarah Palin and Newt Gingrich have too much baggage.

    May 17, 2011 at 5:52 pm |
  118. dave in nashville

    Whatever became of Joe the Plummer? He can fix the leaks and get the water running again in the bone dry congress we keep electing.

    May 17, 2011 at 5:52 pm |
  119. Case

    The Republicians real problem is finding a candidate that can fight out some of the middle ground voters for them. A Tea-Party-friendly heavily socially conservative type might shore up the core support of the party, but just isn't going to find country wide appeal. Candidates with histories of reducing abortion coverage, scaling back medical marijuana use and gutting goverment spending/regulation are just not going to win favor with moderate voters. If the Republicians want the White House back they need to bring in a fiscially conservative candidate who dosn't spend much time talking about social issues. And if they do that they are going to gain ground since i think undecided voters will swing to a moderate Republician in greater numbers then hardcore conservatives will turn their backs on the party. Also for the sake of our political system lets have candidates without their own reality shows. Lets prove that at least a few conservative voters have an IQ over 80....

    May 17, 2011 at 5:52 pm |
  120. Charles F. Campbell

    How about Jon Huntsman, former ambassador to China? He sounds like an intelligent man with depth and his feet on the ground. I'm not a Republican or a Mormon, but I still think he's head and shoulders above most of the rest of the crowd, many of whom are too close to the fringe for middle-of-the-road independents to take seriously.

    He's less glossy than Romney, without a past that's a liability. And anyone who understands China starts out well prepared to face the future.

    May 17, 2011 at 5:54 pm |
  121. Brandon Q.


    May 17, 2011 at 5:55 pm |
  122. BlackDynamite

    Void? Or Gutter?

    May 17, 2011 at 5:58 pm |
  123. Greg in SF

    I'm gonna go with Ronald McDonald. Think about it. He has major business experience, has great name recognition, beloved by millions, has a large potential donor base and most qualifying of all, he, like every other Republican candidate, is a clown.

    May 17, 2011 at 5:59 pm |
  124. Linda in Charleston, SC

    Haha, there is a void? The honorable Ron Paul don't count for filling the void? I am afraid, you know like scared, to even think about who will fill that void.

    May 17, 2011 at 5:59 pm |
  125. Gary in Walla Walla

    If Trump and Huckabee bowing out creates a void in the Republican field they've already lost in 2012. I use to like Huckabee but he proved his lack of cultural savvy by performing a pornographic song "Cat Scratch Fever" with that reprobate psychopath Ted Nugent on the same program he declared himself a follower of Jesus.

    May 17, 2011 at 6:00 pm |
  126. Mick

    Michelle Bachmann of course.

    Wolf Creek Montana

    May 17, 2011 at 6:01 pm |
  127. Chuck Kuehn

    The Republicans do not have any serious candidates because they are so mean-spirited and self-destructive. Who could possibly pacify the birthers, the Tea partiers, the evangelicals, the homophobes and Beck/Limbaughs out there?

    May 17, 2011 at 6:02 pm |
  128. Mike

    The Republiocan Party is so framented they can't bring on a canidate that has potential to win. With most things improving since Obama got elected they cannot come up with a platform that makes sence or is agreed upon by the whole party. It doesn't really matter to me or most of the people I know. President Obama WILL be re-elected. He is the only truly intelligent person running and has done a fine job of putting this country back on it's feet. It wobbles a little for time to time but won't fall down under his direction.

    Attleboro, MA

    May 17, 2011 at 6:02 pm |
  129. Kidcarter8, New Jersey


    It's Jason Chaffets, congressman from UTAH, but his time will be 2016, 2020.........and on. Christie may just be too far right.

    With OBL dead, this year it may not matter, but I am with Gingrich. To dismiss him for 2 divorces (each after LONG marriages) is silly. Listen on the issues – and dont get led my the media that he is a flip flopper of sorts without even hearing his explanation.

    May 17, 2011 at 6:02 pm |
  130. Gary - Woodhaven, Michigan

    I believe Bert and Ernie could fill their shoes.

    May 17, 2011 at 6:02 pm |
  131. Brandon in Alaska

    Ron Paul has the best shot at grabbing votes from independents in my opinion. He appears willing, able, and open to debate with those on either side of the aisle. I think his libertarian stance regarding fiscal responsibility is appealing at this juncture given our economic distress, which could definately play to his advantage.

    I haven't thought twice about who I voted for in 2008, but if Paul runs I just might end up with an (R) on my voting record.

    May 17, 2011 at 6:02 pm |
  132. Nurse Lisa in Shelton CT

    The team is devoid of a-list players. They may be great at raking in the $, but the votes are another story.

    May 17, 2011 at 6:03 pm |
  133. McPresident

    I'm sure they'll find someone with governing experience to challenge the Food Stamp President.

    May 17, 2011 at 6:04 pm |
  134. Kate in San Jose

    How about Ronald McDonald? At least he doesn't pretend to be anything other than a clown.

    May 17, 2011 at 6:04 pm |
  135. Jerry Jacksonville, Fl.

    Well Jack it won't take very much any bumb or Republican with an IQ of 20 or lower could fill their slot and no one would ever know the difference.

    May 17, 2011 at 6:04 pm |
  136. abby, temple, texas

    I have seen no GOP candidate that presents a political philosophy or agenda with which I can agree. I am disappointed in the Democrats as well. The Tea Party is a joke.

    May 17, 2011 at 6:05 pm |
  137. Matt


    No GOP nominee on the roster has a prayer of beating Obama as of now. The GOP are either unwilling to put forth a serious candidate given their outrageous rhetoric, or are simply too darn scared to face the nation given their poor track record int he 2010-2012 time frame. They ran on jobs but have cost thousands of jobs from government, and union workers, not to mention the education sector. Their gaffes have included obviously false statistics with statements like "This is not intended to be a factual statement". They have a credibility problem, a serious one. Obama does not. He's done exactly what he said he'd do. People respect that a lot more than empty talk. Obama will win in 2012, no matter who runs against him. It's in the bag.

    Matt, San Diego, CA

    May 17, 2011 at 6:05 pm |
  138. Bob in Kansas City

    How about a cigar store wooden Indian.

    May 17, 2011 at 6:06 pm |
  139. Jeff

    I'm not sure any of them have a chance right now. Its not as though President Obama has been sitting on his butt. He has lead the charge on many different projects that have been festering for a long time. Yes health care caused controversy, bu the fact that the law pased means that we can now mold it into something workable...while before we have nothing. Mitch Daniels is not exciting and while he may have some reforms under his belt, he's really not in a position to say how he's going o do better than whats already being done (talking about the non-angry electorate).

    May 17, 2011 at 6:07 pm |
  140. Steve, Phoenix, Arizona

    The answer: Darth Vader.

    May 17, 2011 at 6:08 pm |
  141. Lucy

    Allen West, the congressman from Florida for Pres., with perhaps Michelle Bachman for VP. I'm not positive about either of them yet, but I definitely like Bachman much more than Palin. I must say, I did like Trump's straight talking whether I agreed with him or not. I'm so sick of politicians. I want someone who's interested in solving problems instead of spending all his work time campaigning for his next job Mitt Romney is far too much the wishy washy politician for me and Romneycare was such a disaster I don't any confidence in his ability to save our country.

    May 17, 2011 at 6:10 pm |
  142. Larry in WV

    A serious candidate is very unlikely to get through the Republican primaries. Hopefully, the non-serious Republicans cannot win a general election, but there is some doubt about that. Therefore, the void will probably remain.

    May 17, 2011 at 6:11 pm |
  143. Jyothi, St.Louis,MO

    Whoever it is, we would know sooner this time ! I am not curious about who would it be, I am only interested in how long/short will the race for GOP 2012 be.

    May 17, 2011 at 6:11 pm |
  144. Mike S.

    Michele Bachmann would have a good shot. I think if people gave her a chance they would see a strong candidate who knows what is best for the country.

    May 17, 2011 at 6:12 pm |
  145. Bobby E. Lahmon Jackson MS

    No more tv personalities I hope

    May 17, 2011 at 6:13 pm |
  146. John

    I think Jon Huntsman, the former Ambassador to China and before that the moderate Republican governor of Utah, will be the nominee. Huntsman is technically still a Mormon but seems to be recovering, at least enough to defuse most of the anti-Mormon right wing. He's smart, articulate, and a natural leader. There's a lot of time between now and the nomination, and as all the leading Republican candidates fail one litmus test or another and drop away, Huntsman will be left standing, and looking better and better.

    May 17, 2011 at 6:13 pm |
  147. Claudia, Houston, Tx

    Any American born citizens who submits his/her birth certificate can fill that void because that appears to be the only focus and qualifications of the Republican party.

    May 17, 2011 at 6:13 pm |
  148. D

    At this point, does President Obama even need to show up to the debates? The GOP are an absolute joke right now.

    May 17, 2011 at 6:16 pm |
  149. ted

    It does not matter who the GOP runs as whoever it is will destroy Obama's and his lack of economic and foreign policy, this horrible debt, Obama ability to insult everyone from doctors, to business people, to police, to god fearing Americans, then there are the back room deals, horrible healthcare plan, there were all the broken promises from unemployment not getting over 8% to oil drilling to campaign finiancing. Then there is his mess in Libya and the mess ups with Bin Laden. It goes on and on so whoever the GOP contender is they will have a field day with this administration daily screw ups.

    May 17, 2011 at 6:16 pm |
  150. Santiago

    How about we convince the Supreme court that since Bill Clinton ran as a Democrat, he is essentially a different person should he run as a Republican? He is waaaaay right of President Obama, and probably more to the right of Romney or Newt.

    May 17, 2011 at 6:17 pm |
  151. John B

    Maybe the GOP can replace clowns with jugglers. How else could one candidate satisfy the diverse and radical interest groups inside the party.

    May 17, 2011 at 6:17 pm |
  152. Marc

    I'd be willing to bet someone will come out from the background, Colin Powell, or maybe Donald Rumsfeld.

    May 17, 2011 at 6:17 pm |
  153. Michael Shea Albuquerque,NM

    Although I am a Pro-Obama Democratic-Socialist, I think the GOP is well rid of Donald Trump. I think there is much more of a loss for the GOP with Mike Huckabee bowing out, especially for the GOP Bible thumpers. Huckabee was their guy. Unless a clone of Huckabee enters the GOP Primaries, the bible thumpers might stay home for both the primaries and the general election.

    The only candidate that might appeal to the Bible Thumpers is Ron Paul. He is kind of folksy like Huckabee.Paul is the only GOP candidate that appeals to me. I agree with Paul about pulling out of these wars we get involved in. I also agree with him being against all of the unfair trade agreements (i.e. NAFTA,CAFTA, GATT, and WTO). These unfair trade agreements have cost us millions of good paying union jobs in manufacturing and textiles.

    May 17, 2011 at 6:18 pm |
  154. Divine

    Sarah...the one from Wasila

    Grand Rapids, MI

    May 17, 2011 at 6:19 pm |
  155. Danny

    Dont underestimate Ron Paul and his ability to connect with young voters.

    May 17, 2011 at 6:20 pm |
  156. Rich from Texas

    I like Jon Huntsman, business background and political background.

    May 17, 2011 at 6:20 pm |
  157. Joey P.

    Ron Paul already has more media attention than he did throughout almost the entire primary season last time. He is a strong candidate and should not be discounted so quickly. Paul may very well champion the party and bring it back to its past stature.

    May 17, 2011 at 6:21 pm |
  158. Greg, Ontario

    Wolf or you have a better chance than any of the others you mentioned.

    May 17, 2011 at 6:21 pm |
  159. Nancy

    Jack, Michelle Bachman is surely the only candidate worthy of filling the spot left open by Huckabee and Trump. Her religious appeal is comparable to Huckabee's and her total idiocy with facts evwen surpasses the Donald's. Therefore, she should appeal strongly to supporters of each. I can hardly wait.

    May 17, 2011 at 6:21 pm |
  160. Drew in Indiana

    I hope its Mitt Romney because if its my governor, Mitch Daniels, I am leaving the States. Governor Daniels' agenda has reeked havoc in Indiana, and he is no longer the moderate governor he campaigned to be. If this guy runs and is elected POTUS, the future of America is in peril.

    May 17, 2011 at 6:21 pm |
  161. Ward

    ROMNEY? Really? Romney comes out of the gate admitting he's a failure with his own Health Care mandate. Yea, we really want to put a saddle on that.

    May 17, 2011 at 6:22 pm |
  162. Marie

    Lets face it Jack. America is suffering from an acute shortage of quality candidates for public office all round because it takes millions to launch a successful campaign. Take the money out of the game and maybe, just maybe the cream of the crop can rise to the top. Currently all the GOP has are wannabes who don't a snowball's chance in hell of becoming POTUS.

    May 17, 2011 at 6:22 pm |
  163. Ron, Prescott AZ


    May 17, 2011 at 6:23 pm |
  164. Cris from Heyworth Illinois

    Sarah Palin? Why not, the republicans dont have a chance anyway! Not with all the negativity that they have done about Everything!

    May 17, 2011 at 6:23 pm |
  165. John, Milford, MA

    Romney please! The man has no convictions; he changes beliefs depending on who he is talking to. He drove up Mass property taxes. Trashed the state that he said he loved when he was running for office, did not offer an iota of support for his lieutenant governor in her bid for the governor’s race when he left. Heck this election is about creating jobs; the Mittster worked leveraged buyouts of companies and made a fortune by cutting jobs.

    May 17, 2011 at 6:23 pm |
  166. Michael

    I say palin, shes got the name recognition, shes got the highst intensity score and she is the only one who was even close to geting in the white house!! She has my vote!!

    May 17, 2011 at 6:23 pm |
  167. Darren T.

    There is only one statesman in the bunch, John. Consistency in message, and the integrity of a 30 year voting record give Ron Paul a distinct advantage over all of the would-be's. His message is timely as the world begins to realize that he has been right about the fake economy we've been riding on for the past 40 years. More people should look into his positions. In any case, Ron Paul has my vote, again.

    May 17, 2011 at 6:24 pm |
  168. Ken in NC

    There was no void left to fill when Donald Trump pulled out. He was never in. That was all in his mind. He was but the butt of Late night jokes. Now they do have a void they must find a way to fill but for now it appears Michele Bachman may give them a lift.

    May 17, 2011 at 6:24 pm |
  169. mario

    Know who Jack,,, hum let me think ,,, mickey mouse

    May 17, 2011 at 6:24 pm |
  170. Willie, Mississippi

    At this rate Jack- Peter Pan and Robin Hood. With a bickering an divided party trying to destroy Medicare and trying to hold the debt ceiling hostage it's going to be a fairly easy year for Obama in 2012. Daniels has a chance but not the popularity or political collateral to go against Obama- the Osama slayer.

    May 17, 2011 at 6:24 pm |
  171. Bill Montgomery

    Fill the void? Seriously Jack?

    For the sake of humanity, when do we stop mentioning the Donald's name?

    Da winning! and now this!

    (sent with love) 🙂

    May 17, 2011 at 6:24 pm |
  172. Bill

    Fascinating that nobody - including Jack - has mentioned Jon Huntsman. JH is handsome, smart, and fairly central (for a Republican anyway). He's pro-life but he's not militant about it. And he was never a Birther. Speaking as a Yellow-Dog Democrat, I think Jon Huntsman would make a good President, but I think he'll have problems with GOP voters because of his sensible, centrist views.

    Huntsman is the only candidate I fear could beat the President.

    May 17, 2011 at 6:25 pm |
  173. Adam

    Yes, we all know what you're asking but the sleeping giant has been awakened.

    Ron Paul 2012

    We're back, Cafferty.

    May 17, 2011 at 6:25 pm |
  174. Joe Schulte

    The question is not who fills the void...................it's why is there a void . The leading contenders consider Barack Obama unbeatable and are seaking other profitable adventures.....................and there is always 2016 .

    May 17, 2011 at 6:25 pm |
  175. Audrey McBrayer

    Who will fill the Void??

    Any well dressed Chimp that might come along.

    May 17, 2011 at 6:25 pm |
  176. Billy Ray Kerschner

    Before anyone asks Mitch Daniels to run for President, they should check his record of late. If you want the public schools shut down then get him in the White House; if you want more jobs lost then ditto the above. Also ask the people from years ago when "good ol' Mitch" shut down a plant, then skipped off to be Georgies Boy in D.C. with a couple hundred mil for himself.......I know, I am a resident of Indiana. I just wiah the truth to come out about some of these (I don't know how to express what these people are!)!

    May 17, 2011 at 6:26 pm |
  177. William Dunker

    Jon Huntsman will be the republican candidate for president in 2012. He is the only republican that will have the appeal to win back all of the moderates that swung to Obama in the last election. He has incredible appeal, strong financial backing and has been very successful in his positions as ambassador to China and governor of Utah.

    May 17, 2011 at 6:26 pm |
  178. G W Holland

    Ron Paul is the only statesman running for president in either party, yet the media constantly labels him as unelectable. If the networks would shower him with the attention they give Palin and Trump, they'd be doing this country a great service. Dr. Paul in 2012!

    austin, texas

    May 17, 2011 at 6:26 pm |
  179. Bob Irvin

    I believe that Mitch Daniels will announce within the next few weeks that he will run for the Presidency in 2012. If he does, the Republican Party will come together behind his Candidacy, as will moderate Independents. Daniels would be a challenge for Obama will his message of fiscal discipline. B. Irvin, Indianapolis, IN

    May 17, 2011 at 6:26 pm |
  180. aedan

    Jack says Ron Paul has electability issues. Didn't he just beat all the other potential republican candidates in a hypothetical matchup against Obama in a CNN poll?

    May 17, 2011 at 6:27 pm |
  181. John

    Jack, there is no need to worry so much about GOP, this has become a party of jokers and tea-parties. They have no one that can out beat the serious and outstanding performances of President Obama.

    May 17, 2011 at 6:27 pm |
  182. Junior Wilson

    I don't think there is any Republican out there who can beat Obama. The economy is recovering, the country is getting its reputation back and Obama just killed the most wanted man in the world. At the same time republicans passed a plan that is most likely to kill the seniors and when one of them is against that plan the rest of the group treats him as a traitor. Obama is going to have fun

    May 17, 2011 at 6:27 pm |
  183. Brooke

    Really Jack....the economy is starting to recover??? What makes you think that? Just because we are not in a depression yet doesn't mean the economy is getting better. Unemployment is still high, housing prices are still dropping, the stock market is still in a slump, and gas prices are insane. Everything Obama is doing isn't helping ANY of this so unless he starts to put policies in place that actually help he is out of here in 2012 no matter who runs from the GOP. Oh, and by the way, creating government jobs is not creating jobs! Mitt Romney by far in my opinion has the best chance of beating Obama. Romney is the expert himself and doesn't have to appoint so called "experts" to tell him what to do. The economy is a mess, it was a mess before Obama took office but this administration has done nothing to help it, over time what they have done has just made it worse! Romney is the smartest and most presidential candidate by far from the Republicans and once he officially announces he is running he will become the front runner. We need a leader in the White House who actually knows what they are doing with our economy!!!!

    May 17, 2011 at 6:27 pm |
  184. Richard Parrilla

    Gary Johnson. Enough said. The liberals will leave Obama in a hurry, and he'll keep those more moderate Republicans too.

    May 17, 2011 at 6:28 pm |
  185. Renee Peoria,Ill

    Excellent question. The GOP's biggest problem is that they still haven't learned a vital lesson from the last presidential election. I was all set to vote for McCain until he started sucking up to the hard right and then chose the bubble-head as his running mate. Extremists may make more noise but that doesn't translate into more votes on election day. Independents and moderates swing elections, McCain forgot that and lost. If the GOP continues to ignore the center they're going to lose another election. They need a candidate moderate enough to hold the center. Romney seems the best bet but unless he (or another sufficiently moderate candidate) impresses the hell out of me, Obama's got my vote again.

    May 17, 2011 at 6:28 pm |
  186. Ryan

    Ron Paul 2012

    May 17, 2011 at 6:29 pm |
  187. Dirk

    Why are we arguing about who would make a successful candidate when we should be discussing who would make the best president. If Republicans are serious about running a fiscally conservative administration, they need to nominate Ron Paul. He is the only one that is talking about what needs to me done to fix this financial mess we are in.

    Dirk, Cincinnati, OH

    May 17, 2011 at 6:29 pm |
  188. Mike

    It's an easy choice. Look at the candidate's records and policies and we will all see that Ron Paul is the best choice. If the founding fathers are alive today, they will support Ron Paul.

    May 17, 2011 at 6:29 pm |
  189. Susan from Idaho

    Jack if he didn't plan of running in the first place no void intended. The GOP is so divided getting the majority to back one candidate is almost impossible. I think Gingrich is the hypocrite the broke the camels back.

    May 17, 2011 at 6:29 pm |
  190. Abdul

    I thought it meant intellectual void!

    May 17, 2011 at 6:30 pm |
  191. Kevin in CA

    It's a really small void, so it'll have to be a really, really small person.

    May 17, 2011 at 6:30 pm |

    Mitch Daniels would be the most sensible. He has considerable experience with national bugetary matters, which no other Repulblican candidate has, and seens to be mainstream on most issues. His lack of name rocgnitioon will be a definite minus until or if he survives to the debates. He seems to stand alone as an intelligent, non-controversal candidate right now. Even after the debates he will need an extraordinary and expensive publicity campaign for most of electorate to know what he stands for..

    May 17, 2011 at 6:31 pm |
  193. Elaine

    Scott Brown?

    May 17, 2011 at 6:31 pm |
  194. scoto

    And who will fill the void inside the heads of our leading Republican figures?

    May 17, 2011 at 6:32 pm |
  195. Ellis Manning

    Very few are talking about Jon Huntsman. Some networks have shown his picture, but haven`t mentioned his name. I have been pushing him and Chris Christie for months. I think the voters can get behind a Huntsman-Christie ticket. I believe they can beat Obama. Ellis Manning Austin TX

    May 17, 2011 at 6:32 pm |
  196. Tim

    One of the biggest criticisms about Mitch Daniels is that he is not charismatic enough to run for president. Jack, I don't want a rock star I just want someone with enough fiscal sense to attempt at a fix of the mess we call our economy. If Mitch runs, he has my vote...

    May 17, 2011 at 6:34 pm |
  197. Cody in SLC utah

    Ron Paul / Romney / Christie seem to be the favorites of the GOP. It will largely depend on the substance of their solutions though.

    May 17, 2011 at 6:35 pm |
  198. maine liberal

    the void is the republican/tea party
    i am sure that the wasilly hillbilly sees this as her call to run.

    “If nobody else wanted to step up, I would offer myself up in the name of service to the public,”

    May 17, 2011 at 6:36 pm |
  199. baba anjorin

    Nobody but Donald Trump.....the list of Rep Party candidate keep getting worse......Donald is going to come back in to the primary.....sooner than later

    May 17, 2011 at 6:37 pm |
  200. Eric

    Probably the two or three best prospective Republican candidates are undeclared, those being Paul Ryan, Jeb Bush, and Colin Powell. Each one has likeability, star power, and substantive credibility, if not fire in the belly.

    May 17, 2011 at 6:37 pm |
  201. Cris from Heyworth Illinois

    Scrooge McDuck, he's the perfect republican!

    May 17, 2011 at 6:37 pm |
  202. Pacific View, Santa Monica

    If your base is the part of the Tea Party that has been hijacked by the evangelicals, don't expect to see anything original. They all have to pass the same test or they are just RINOs. They are making themselves very unelectable for the rest of us.

    May 17, 2011 at 6:37 pm |
  203. joe

    It won't matter. The weakest candidate will be Barrack Obama.

    May 17, 2011 at 6:37 pm |
  204. David from So Cali

    The GOP is dying. As are its primary supporters, quite literally. The younger bracket is much more libarally minded overall, and this will lead to a shift in the primary parties in America. Who will take over the GOP status to run opposite Democrats?

    I would say most indications would say the Libertarian party. Socially liberal, fiscally conservative. A blend of that with the democratic mindset could prove a decent mix, if they can come to work together on the fiscal aspect of things. The GOP will eventually be a minor party, give it maybe 30 years or so tops.

    May 17, 2011 at 6:38 pm |
  205. M

    These 2 know when to quit – because once the election gets underway – these two would be gasping for air since they have no staying power. Weaklings quit first. Next will be nutter Newt

    May 17, 2011 at 6:38 pm |
  206. Tony San Francisco

    President Obama

    May 17, 2011 at 6:39 pm |
  207. Jon Ingram, Council Bluffs, IA

    Ron Paul, the Godfather of the Tea Party! He's the only candidate with any credibility on the issues at the forefront of the debate. This is a man that sticks to his principles and has the voting record to back up his views on foreign policy, spending, taxes, and civil liberties. Dr. Paul is also the only candidate, Republican or Democrat, that can fill the anti-war void in Washington. Obama=Bush on foreign policy.

    May 17, 2011 at 6:39 pm |
  208. Phillip

    Who will fill the void ? Hopefully, no one. Repupblicans & Democrats are so similar it's pathetic ! Wars, Bailouts, Patriot Act....did I say wars ?

    Ron Paul is UFC and the elite in both parties are pro wrestlers. FAKE !

    May 17, 2011 at 6:40 pm |
  209. Dave L

    The Bushies will make sure that it will be Jeb.

    May 17, 2011 at 6:40 pm |
  210. boz

    michael vick

    May 17, 2011 at 6:42 pm |
  211. Ari

    Ron Paul believes in as little government regulation as necessary, state's rights, and personal liberty ( legalization of drugs & prostituion ). These are the exact fundamentals we need applied to our broken system. The other candidates are all bible-thumping gay-marriage-haters, and resemble the horrible cliche republicans that everyone despises.

    May 17, 2011 at 6:43 pm |
  212. NoGOP12

    The whole field is "Void"

    May 17, 2011 at 6:43 pm |
  213. Cliff Cummings

    "There is Mitt Romney – already lost" – Really? That's why you think he cannot win?? I seem to recall another "loser" who beat an incumbent president by a landslide in 1980 named Ronald Reagan. I like Mitt Romney's chances.

    May 17, 2011 at 6:46 pm |
  214. Michael Armstrong Sr. Sherman Tx.

    Bill Gates Ive already talked to him about it .

    May 17, 2011 at 6:47 pm |
  215. Trevor

    Sarah plain jane Palin,

    Jack she already had her own reality show........she might fire herself out of the race for 2012.........Trump already did.

    May 17, 2011 at 6:49 pm |
  216. Ethan Duarte

    None. No one running as of now can help the GOP. If Scott Brown ran, then we would be interesting in the GOP. President Obama will be our leader even if they find someone to help the GOP.

    May 17, 2011 at 6:49 pm |
  217. dissident

    Mitch Daniels finally told Trump to back off because a potential contender in the GOP was losing the rich scumbag vote.

    May 17, 2011 at 6:50 pm |
  218. Neil

    I like Tim Pawlenty, as well as Herman Cain. I don't think that it will take that strong of a candidate to beat Obama. If the Republicans lose in 2012, it will be because they've done something incredibly stupid, not because President Obama has done anything great. What we need is a budget hawk. We can't spend our way back to prosperity.

    May 17, 2011 at 6:50 pm |
  219. Eardley Ham Woodbury, MN

    Obama is very likely to be a one-term president unless the economy (read that jobs) improves substantially in the coming twelve months. Of course the opposition must put forth a viable candidate, something that they have not yet done. Daniels or Romney either one would stand a better than even chance of capturing the White House.

    If, however, the job picture turns around and factory productivity stays on an increasing trajectory and we don't have some sort of financial melt-down because of the debt limit fiasco, Obama will win handily, no matter who the Republicans field.

    May 17, 2011 at 6:51 pm |
  220. cal

    Who cares. any one who runs will be brand a fair game for all the news.
    Obama can do no wrong in there eyes.We have the wrost man at the white house every. If were are still a country in 2014 we be very lucky. Learn to speak a forgein langage soon we will need it to ask for mercy from our new leaders. It may be a three way split as to which country takes over. when the run off starts watch all the tea party haters go wild with smart remark about how they will tear down the usa.

    May 17, 2011 at 6:51 pm |
  221. Eric

    Michelle Bachmann and Sarah Palin are who is left. Tweedledee and Tweedledum have enough clout to attract the dingbat vote, and some people would be seduced by their...umm...rhetoric! If that's true, than Barack Obama doesn't have much to worry about!

    May 17, 2011 at 6:52 pm |
  222. Conservative in MD

    Rick Perry or Cris Christie

    May 17, 2011 at 6:53 pm |
  223. Carlos

    Ron Paul is too crazy
    Mitch Daniels is too short
    Mitt Romney is too stiff

    There just ain't gonna be a Goldilocks candidate for the GOP this year, I'm afraid.

    May 17, 2011 at 6:53 pm |
  224. Dennis E

    My choice is a candidate that will actually work for all American's the working class stiffs, to the well to do, and everyone in between. It is not to much to ask is it? I thought that back in the early 60's when I was in high school that our country had a bright future. As the clock has ticked and I am slowly approaching 65 not much good as come about for the country I love. Party bickering and media hanging on every word and or taking a story and twisting it to make their ratings go up is bunk. Jack you have had your wings clipped the past few months by your news agency. Sad to see. The US needs to take seriously what our Nation truly stands for and how the rest of the World looks upon us a society.
    No one seems ready to stand up and take a solid stand about any important issue for fear of offending some special group. That is bad news.
    A veteran from Northern California

    May 17, 2011 at 6:55 pm |
  225. Indiana Jim

    If Mitch Daniels is a formidable challenge, I may look for another country to live in out of embarassment. He has spent his career before and since his election to governor sticking it to the middle class. But wait a minute, that's exactly what the GOP likes. Maybe he could win.

    May 17, 2011 at 6:56 pm |
  226. Sgt. Joe

    Obama has it bagged; the GOP may as well pack it up and consider themselves obsolete. We need to represent middle America, not GOP special interests or religious wingnuts. Had enough of that already and it didn't serve our country well then, and won't in the future. Learn from history.

    May 17, 2011 at 6:57 pm |
  227. Frank Lengel

    If Trump was never a candidate, what's the big deal that he's not running? I think the media declared him to be a candidate - like they did with Palin last year. Maybe we should just wait until people declare their candidacy before we start reporting that they are candidates? Just a thought ...

    May 17, 2011 at 6:57 pm |
  228. Eben in NYC, NY

    As a Republican appalled by some of the idiocy being parlayed as politics, my pick would be Jon Huntsman. I just hope that the Conservatives in the GOP won't try to block him as being "tainted" by serving as an Ambassador in the Obama administration.

    The Democrats I talk to are scared that he will run, as they consider him a real threat. Obama won't be the first leading politico to send a dangerous rival away from the fray in a position where he can't actively cause trouble for the incumbent. I just hope Huntsman isn't arriving on the scene too late to make a difference...

    May 17, 2011 at 6:57 pm |
  229. Loretta

    Mario Rubio?

    May 17, 2011 at 6:57 pm |
  230. Gre Girl

    Can OBAMA run UNOPPOSED? 🙂

    May 17, 2011 at 6:57 pm |