America could have been a nation where parents told their children, “Anyone who writes Game of Thrones re-caps for a living can grow up to be commander-in-chief.” Alas, it’s not to be. Weekly Standard editor and always-wrong pundit William Kristol had been floating the idea of French making an independent bid for the presidency, to be the avatar of true conservatives who can abide neither Donald Trump nor Hillary Clinton. To be sure, French did seem like the longest of long-shots, an obscure National Review writer whose main distinguishing feature from other C-grade right-wing columnists was his anti-trans obsession.
What killed the David French dream was David French himself. As he explains in an article grandly titled “I’m Not Running For President”: “As I’ve written many times before, nations are built on virtue—and courage is indispensable. But there is also prudence, and it was simply not prudent for me to take on this task.” To translate into plain, non-National Review English: even French is not so delusional as to think he stands a chance in hell of winning.
Going forward, the question is what other esoteric right-wing talking head can Kristol try to cajole into his fool’s errand: Ian Tuttle, John Fund, Kathryn Jean Lopez, Arch Puddington? Or perhaps Kristol himself?