Senator Jim DeMint (R-SC) “has ruled out a run for president in 2012, choosing instead to focus his growing political power on helping to elect more conservatives to the Senate next November,” the Washington Post reports.
While DeMint has done little to suggest he wanted to run for president, a scheduled trip this weekend to Iowa where he will address a conservative conference organized by Rep. Steve King had stoked speculation that the South Carolina Republican might be interested in running.
“He’s said all along that he isn’t running for President and his role in the primary is to encourage the candidates to embrace conservative principles,” said Matt Hoskins, spokesman for the Senate Conservatives Fund, DeMint’s political action committee.
“At the end of the day he believes he can do more to change America by continuing to change the U.S. Senate,” said a source familiar with DeMint’s thinking. “He doesn’t wake up everyday with a burning desire to be the commander-in-chief [and] he knows without a deep burning desire to be president it is near impossible to successfully run for the job.”