Mitt Romney, the 2012 Republican presidential nominee, refused Sunday to rule out becoming the nominee again this year at a brokered convention, though he insisted he couldn’t imagine that happening.
“I don’t think anyone in our party should say, ‘Oh no, even if the people of the party wanted me to be president, I would say no to it.’ No one is going to say that,” Mr. Romney said on NBC’s “Meet the Press.”
Speculation abounded that Mr. Romney was setting himself up for a surprise nomination last week when he unleashed a brutal denouncement of front-runner Donald Trump, urging voters to support anyone but the billionaire real estate mogul in upcoming primaries to force a contested convention this summer in Cleveland, Ohio.
Mr. Romney lambasted Mr. Trump as “a fraud, a phony” in a speech Thursday. “He gets a free ride to the White House, and all we get is a lousy hat.”
On the Sunday talk show, Mr. Romney said he isn’t running and plans to endorse one of Mr. Trump’s three rivals — either Texas Sen. Ted Cruz, Ohio Gov. John Kasich or Florida Sen. Marco Rubio.
“I can tell you this: I’m not a candidate. I’m not going to be a candidate. I am going to be endorsing one of the people who is running for president,” he said. “One of the four is going to be the Republican Party nominee. Three of the four are people I would endorse. But I’m not running and I’m not going to be running.”