This session of the Indiana legislature will end at midnight on Friday night, and Governor Mitch Daniels has announced that he will sign a bill into law that would defund Planned Parenthood, sending ripples across the Republican primary field.
Daniels is certainly not the most well known among the possible presidential field, nor is he considered to be the most charismatic. But a look at Daniels’ executive record suggests that he is working on checking the boxes that Republican primary voters are looking for, and, a source close to Daniels points out, if you haven’t heard about his accomplishments, it’s because he’s been too busy getting stuff done to flaunt it.
Democrats in the Indiana legislature, taking a cue from their counterparts in Wisconsin, fled the state to avoid a vote. Daniels got nowhere near as much press as Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker did, but the source says this was because Daniels was focused on doing his job.
“When House Democrats walked out for five-weeks, Mitch didn’t grandstand,” the source said. “Instead, he worked with our Republican leadership to ensure the agenda kept moving forward despite the inability to pass legislation until a quorum had been reached.”
“Mitch stayed focused on the job he was elected to do,” the source added.
Daniels is known as a strong fiscal conservative; when he served as President George W. Bush’s Office of Management and Budget director, he was known as ‘the blade’ for his unflinching approach to budget cutting.
The source suggests that looking at this past legislative session could give clues to what a Daniels presidency could look like.
“The past four months have been a case study in the governing style and abilities of Governor Mitch Daniels,” the source said. “From the get-go, he presented a broad and ambitious agenda with a single purpose: continuing Indiana’s Comeback.”
The implication is that Daniels would be equipped to facilitate the country’s ‘comeback’ from its current economic troubles.
Daniels has said that he would not announce until after the legislative session had ended, and recently added that though the announcement will not come this weekend, he will certainly not keep people waiting for long.