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Romney Scares Them Most, Democratic Insiders Tell National Journal

Jun 2, 2011

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Reported by

Frank James

If you're seeking your party's nomination to run against a sitting president of the opposite party, one of the best arguments you can make is that your candidacy would be the one most feared by the incumbent.

Mitt Romney, who formally announced his presidential campaign Thursday, appears to be the Republican candidate who can best make that case though not by much, based on an unscientific National Journal poll of Democratic insiders.

The Journal poll found that 27 percent of the Democratic political players thought Romney would give President Obama the most trouble while 25 percent chose Jon Huntsman and 20 percent picked Tim Pawlenty.

An excerpt:

While he was hardly their runaway choice, Democratic Insiders who thought Romney would be the GOP's strongest nominee cited his knowledge of the economy and business, and his experience as a White House candidate in 2008. At times they sounded as more positive than Republican Insiders who thought Romney was the candidate most likely to win the GOP nomination. "[The] Republican establishment will need to grit their teeth and realize it's Romney or four more years of Obama," said one Democratic Insider. "He's relatively road-tested, compared to with most of the list [of GOP contenders]," noted another.

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