Does Holcomb Running for State Chair Mean Mitch Is Not Running for President?

The Republican State Chair race is probably over before it really began.  Hoosier Pundit posted this afternoon that sources on State Committee have confirmed the Governor is backing Eric Holcomb for State Chair.  While it hasn’t been confirmed by Holcomb that he will seek the position, Governor Mitch Daniels indication that he will be supporting Holcomb indicates Holcomb will be in the race. 

This will have interesting implications on the Mitch Daniels for President movement since Holcomb taking the State Chairman job may signal that My Man Mitch is less likely to run for President.  Sure, there is an argument to be made that Holcomb can run around the country as the Indiana Republican Party Chairman and the State Chair would certainly be playing some role in the Mitch for President world.  The State Party Chairman role, however, brings a whole different group of responsibilities that limit Holcomb’s ability to spend all of his time on a Mitch for President run and a presidential race cannot have a part-time leader.

Indiana Republicans cannot afford to have a part-time leader either.  Many view 2011 as an off-year spent simply waiting for the Pence-Skillman Governor’s controversy to be worked out.  Insiders, however, believe this election cycle is crucial to building the infrastructure for a successful 2012 Governor’s campaign.  This is particularly true if Republicans have a long, drawn out primary process for Governor.  The State Party will need to have the pieces in place to assist the eventual nominee as they shift into General Election mode. 

We’re sure we won’t be the first or the last to be asking these questions and speculating on the implications.  One thing we do know is that we will all know at the end of April exactly what Governor Mitch Daniels intends to do.

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5 Responses to Does Holcomb Running for State Chair Mean Mitch Is Not Running for President?

  1. Matt Stone says:

    I don’t know if a primary is really all that bad. Pence is well known among politicos and his district, but that’s about it. Though his name recognition probably increased after the 2010 election since he was airing radio and television ads all across the state despite not facing any real opposition in his district.

    Skillman, in my view, has the name recognition, but it might be hard to tie her directly to an initiative and say “I made this happen”. Pence might have the same problem, but that’s always a problem when a legislative representative tries to break into the executive body.

  2. A primary in and of itself isn’t always a bad thing though it would certainly be better for the Republicans if they could find a way to avoid it so the eventually nominee could focus on raising funds for the General Election.

    Also, a race between Skillman and Pence could turn into a contest for who is the most socially conservative. Not exactly a general election message.

  3. Bleeding Blue says:

    Totaly agree. I would hate to see Pence and Skillman tear the party apart. Delph is doing a good job of that on his own attacking Lugar. I think that Mitch wants the National Chair position.

  4. Visitor says:

    Wouldn’t having his top STATE political guy running things back home make it easier for Daniels to run nation-wide? At least Holcomb could keep things running smoothly and squash any dissent while The Gov is away.

  5. Visitor, feel free to take your coat off and stay awhile.

    We kind of think it would make more sense to have his top state guy with him. While a national name may be the manager or main person for the Governor on the Presidential race, it is always good to have someone you really trust and have for years by your side on the national scene.

    Also, we’re not sure what dissent there would be that Holcomb would need to squash. He’ll have a lot of Party activities and infrastructure to worry about and less time to worry about the Gov and his presidential race.

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