Republican lawmakers marked historic wins in the midterm elections, but Mitt Romney was the undisputed behind-the-scenes victor Nov. 4, one analysis shows.
The 2012 Republican presidential nominee endorsed 76 candidates while traveling the country to stump for GOP candidates over the last several months, while former secretary of State Hillary Clinton — the presumed Democratic front-runner in the 2016 White House race — backed 39, The Washington Post reports.
And in two spreadsheets circulated among Romney supporters last week, Romney's "winning percentage" was 66 percent compared with Clinton's 33 percent, The Post reports, citing data it obtained from unnamed Romney associates.
Romney's involvement didn't stop with the election: Romney made more than 80 phone calls to GOP candidates last Tuesday and Wednesday to congratulate them on their victories, including Senate candidates Joni Ernst of Iowa and Thom Tillis of North Carolina, and personally congratulated Republican Charlie Baker on his Massachusetts gubernatorial win, The Post reports.
According to The Post, Romney associates believe if former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush doesn't run, Romney would consider another presidential bid, telling friends he likes the Republican field of possible contenders, but is worried they may not be able to beat Clinton.
Though Romney has been denying
an interest in another White House run for months, his inner circle believes the spreadsheets could get the attention of "the data-driven" Romney — and that his behind-the-scenes activity for the party this midterm cycle bolsters his overall position in the GOP, The Post reports.
At a speech he gave last Friday at the Israeli American Council’s national conference, Romney took direct aim at an "inept" Oval Office, criticizing a foreign policy
that he said is "weakening our military and distancing us from our allies."
The Post also cited a survey by Democracy Corps,
a Democrat group, showing that those who voted in the midterms favored Romney over Clinton by 46 percent to 45 percent.
A Des Moines Register-Bloomberg News poll
released last month showed Romney as the only potential 2016 candidate who would beat Clinton among likely Iowa voters, 44 percent to 43 percent, USA Today reports.
Acknowledging that he campaigned in 27 states this year, Romney maintained it wasn't with an eye to the White House, the Washington Examiner r
eported, saying: "I am going to continue to fight and campaign for people who I believe in, that can get the country going in the right direction."
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