The Republican National Committee recently released a "2016 presidential straw poll" asking users to choose the three names they would most like to see as the Republican nominee in the 2016 presidential election.
The list has 32 names, and includes governors, senators, business leaders, and more.
The Washington Examiner transcribed the list:
- Sen. Kelly Ayotte, of New Hampshire
- Haley Barbour, former Mississippi governor
- John Bolton, former ambassador to the United Nations
- Jeb Bush, former Florida governor
- Herman Cain, radio host and former CEO
- Ben Carson, author and neurosurgeon
- Chris Christie, New Jersey governor
- Sen. Ted Cruz, of Texas
- Mitch Daniels, former Indiana governor
- Newt Gingrich, former House speaker
- Nikki Haley, South Carolina governor
- Mike Huckabee, former Arkansas governor
- Bobby Jindal, Louisiana governor
- John Kasich, Ohio governor
- Rep. Peter King, of New York
- Susana Martinez, New Mexico governor
- Sarah Palin, former Alaska governor
- Sen. Rand Paul, of Kentucky
- Former Rep. Ron Paul, of Texas
- Tim Pawlenty, former Minnesota governor
- Mike Pence, Indiana governor
- Rick Perry, Texas governor
- Sen. Rob Portman, of Ohio
- Condoleezza Rice, former secretary of state
- Sen. Marco Rubio, of Florida
- Rep. Paul Ryan, of Wisconsin
- Brian Sandoval, Nevada governor
- Rick Santorum, former Pennsylvania senator
- Sen. Tim Scott, of South Carolina
- Sen. John Thune, of South Dakota
- Scott Walker, Wisconsin governor
- Former Rep. Allen West, of Florida
Glenn Beck -- who is no fan of the establishment GOP -- tackled the list on his radio show Thursday, saying he had "lots of ink" to remove many of the names. He and his radio co-hosts - Pat Gray and Stu Burguiere - proceeded to tackle the names as though they were judges for "American Idol," deciding which candidates they would "send to Hollywood."
Names the three immediately struck from the list included former Florida Governor Jeb Bush, Herman Cain, New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, former House Speaker Newt Gingrich, former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee, former Minnesota Gov. Tim Pawlenty, Sen. Marco Rubio of Florida, and Rep. Paul Ryan of Wisconsin.
Beck said they were either progressive Republicans, or we've "been there, done that."
Many names were left on the list simply because not enough is known about their policies and beliefs at this point.
Displeased with the number of remaining candidates, Beck asked his co-hosts who they would absolutely trust to send to Washington at this point if they had a "gun to their head."
"Someone you say, 'I know enough about this person, I would go to bat for them, right now. What I know, I am confident enough to say I'll back that guy 110%,''" Beck remarked.
Four candidates quickly emerged as the top contenders among the group: Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas), Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.), Gov Scott Walker (R-Wis.), and former Rep. Allen West (R-Fla.).
While it may seem early to start considering 2016 candidates, Gray said it's wise to start considering the options now. Otherwise, he argued, you end up with a "crappy" candidate but vote for them anyway, because they're the only one left and "electable" at that point.
"Let's make [them] electable now," he said. "So that in 2016, they do get elected. Is there a problem with that?"
Who would be your top three choices for the Republican nominee in the 2016 presidential election?
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