POLITICS
01/30/2015 10:54 am ET Updated Jan 30, 2015

Mitt Romney Is Not Running For President In 2016

Former Massachusetts governor and 2012 GOP presidential candidate Mitt Romney said he will not run for president in 2016.

Hugh Hewitt posted text of the remarks Romney was to make on a conference call with donors discussing his 2016 plans on Friday.

"After putting considerable thought into making another run for president, I’ve decided it is best to give other leaders in the Party the opportunity to become our next nominee," the prepared remarks say.

Romney lost his 2008 bid for the Republican presidential nomination to Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.), and in 2012, ran unsuccessfully against President Barack Obama.

Romney hinted recently that he was exploring a run for the presidency after months of him saying he would not make another White House bid.

"I'm not running, I'm not planning on running, and I've got nothing new on that story," he told Bloomberg in October 2014.

But even as he denied he was interested in another campaign, Romney left the door open. Romney told donors earlier in January that he was considering running for president, and moved to reassemble his old campaign team.

Romney's potential 2016 Republican rivals had questioned whether the former governor could bring anything new to a campaign.

"There are some who believe that the path to Republican victory is to run to the mushy middle, is to blur distinctions," Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) said in January in response to a question about Romney. "I think that recent history has shown us that’s not a path to success. It doesn’t work. It’s failed electoral strategy."

Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.) dismissed Romney as "yesterday's news".

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