The quickest way to generate some earned media (or basically unearned media depending on how you look at it) is for any Republican right now to indicate that he or she might be exploring the possibility of a potential run. The number of people looking at a run seems to be multiplying daily. Even the most improbable candidates with essentially no chance of winning are almost guaranteed a plethora of articles once uttering even the vaguest of hints.
In just the past day, we learn from CNN that Sen. Jim “DeMint [is] open to 2012 presidential bid, advisers say.”
And from the Des Moines Register, we hear that even Nevada Senate loser “Sharron Angle comes to Iowa, doesn’t rule out presidential bid.”
It was only last week that Rudy Giuliani scored some choice headlines with the claim that he would be “more likely” to run if Sarah Palin got in the race. And earlier this month, during a fairly slow news day, conservative radio host Herman Cain manage to get a large amount of free press by becoming the first official Republican with an exploratory committee.
Michelle Bachmann has very effectively flirting with a 2012 run to keep herself front-and-center as a “tea party” voice.
Fringe Republicans don’t get to have all the fun
Why all eyes are on any Republicans that might happen to be possibly driving through Iowa, they aren’t the only ones that can grab a quick 15 minutes by exploring a run. Anti-abortion activist Randall Terry managed to garner national attention by announcing a clearly doomed primary challenge of President Obama, and even former “Rent is Too Damn High” New York Gubernatorial candidate Jimmy McMillan was able to get a few local articles written about his ambitions to become our nation’s next Commander in Chief.
If you are a Republican desperate for some media attention but know you have zero chance of ever being elected president don’t worry. Merely the strong hint that you are thinking about a 2012 run during a slow news day, regardless how quixotic, is sure to get your name in a few headlines.