Romney's schedule hints at run in 2012
Ask Mitt Romney about his presidential ambitions, and he artfully demurs. But his schedule keeps looking like that of someone who has his eyes on 2012.
The former Massachusetts governor, who sought the GOP nomination last year, was the keynote speaker last night at the Virginia Republican Party's big Commonwealth Gala dinner in Richmond, his latest appearance before the party faithful.
Tomorrow, Romney is scheduled to make his latest appearance on a political talk show, on "Fox News Sunday."
And on Monday morning, he is scheduled to give a major policy speech on national security at the high-profile Heritage Foundation in Washington, his latest venture into critiquing President Obama.
Romney's speech, titled "The Care of Freedom," will assess the Obama administration's response to North Korea's nuclear and missile tests "and America's larger leadership role in the world," the foundation said.
Gallup says that in daily tracking polls this month, Obama has averaged a 65 percent job approval rating. Of post-World War II presidents, only three - Dwight Eisenhower, John F. Kennedy, and Ronald Reagan - had higher numbers in May of their first year in office.
Obama's numbers are better than at the same point for the three most recent commanders in chief - George H.W. Bush, Bill Clinton, and George W. Bush - and are on par with Jimmy Carter and Richard Nixon.
Obama's support "will certainly be tested in the coming months, though, as Congress begins work on some of his more ambitious initiatives, including his 2010 budget and healthcare reform," the pollsters said.
But her husband, former President Bill Clinton, apparently has not quite fully moved past the nomination fight.
One of the juiciest assertions in a lengthy profile of the former president in tomorrow's New York Times magazine - a piece titled "The Mellowing of William Jefferson Clinton" - is that Clinton hasn't reached the forgive-and-forget stage over some key Obama supporters.
"People close to Clinton said he has largely got over his resentment at Obama, but not toward Ted Kennedy and his niece, Caroline Kennedy," Times White House scribe Peter Baker writes. "As Clinton sees it, they say, he did so much for the Kennedys over the years that he felt they became almost family. Nor has he forgiven Governor Bill Richardson of New Mexico, who endorsed Obama even though Clinton appointed him to two Cabinet posts."
Senator Edward M. Kennedy's anointment of Obama as picking up the torch of his brothers John and Robert came at a key moment, just before Super Tuesday in February 2008, and helped coalesce the liberal wing of the Democratic Party behind Obama.