Salena Zito:

The politicians we deserve

In the spring of 2011, then-Gov. Mitch Daniels of Indiana announced he would not seek the Republican presidential nomination, ending months of excitement among conservatives around his possible run. His family’s reservations under the spotlight far outweighed any political pressure he may have been feeling, and he gracefully bowed out.

His decision was a low point for conservatives hungry for that Midwestern sensibility and sharp wit that he embodied. As former senior political adviser to President Ronald Reagan and head of President George W. Bush’s Office of Management and Budget, Daniels was a rock star in the conservative movement. But the Daniels family had a complicated past. He and his wife had married, divorced and eventually remarried each other.


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