Dave Weigel has a profile of South Carolina Gov. Mark Sanford over at the Washington Independent today, which I strongly recommend you check out, not least because, if you're reading me, odds are you're someone who has some time for very fiscally hawkish individuals who don't mind ticking off large swaths of the political establishment, and big chunks of his own party. Mark Sanford is one such man.
He's also someone who, at least if you buy what Weigel has to say, is managing to entrance some of the same folks who donated heavily to Ron Paul in 2008 (not a candidate who came close to winning, but nonetheless, one who made an impact and raised a ton of money)-- and who could make a viable run in 2012. Or so Allah at Hot Air seems to think: He sees Huckabee and Sanford as those certain to make a play for the GOP nomination, while he also seems to see Sanford and Sarah Palin as direct adversaries. That's an argument I find a little bit off-base (a subject to be discussed at further length in a post to be written not at 9-and-a-bit o'clock PM on a Monday night), but I suppose we shall see-- it's only 2009, I only finished working on a presidential campaign a few short months ago, and yet, we seem to be off again.
But if we must, I will say this: Personally, I'm most interested by Utah Gov. Jon Huntsman at this stage; however, Sanford probably ranks a (close?) second for me. He earned an A from the Cato Institute on his 2008 Fiscal Policy Report Card on America's Governors; he was personally cheap enough that as a congressman, he slept on a futon in his office (per Reason's linkage back to Weigel's original piece)-- something that appeals to me, with my rather stereotypical, cheap Scottish roots (cheap roots which, if you believe the anecdote here about Florida Septembers, Sanford also seems to have). I'll be interested to see whether he runs-- if he does, he could make the race pretty exiciting, when it comes around. [intro]