Gingrich: I'm a top-tier contender for the 2012 nomination

Via JWF, I trust that this will be received warmly by the Hot Air readership.

“I think I’m probably on a list of seven or eight possible candidates at this stage,” Gingrich said. “We have a lot of people around the country who would like to have somebody who represents a commitment to replace the current failed programs and to develop a set of solutions that are practical and workable.”

Gingrich listed several current and former goverors who he thinks might enter the race. They include former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin, former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee and Minnesota Gov. Tim Pawlenty. He said he will discuss his possible candidacy with his wife early next year before making a decision about whether to run.

Gingrich also suggested that governors Mitch Daniels from Indiana, Haley Barbour from Mississippi, Rick Perry from Texas and Bobby Jindal from Louisiana, as well as South Dakota Sen. John Thune could run.

Well, look. His name has been tossed around, and everyone else in the field either has zero name recognition or plenty of baggage of their own. The base hates him because of the Scozzafava thing but they hated McCain too and got over it. Jindal likely has no plans to run, Huck seems like he’s into his TV gig now, and Mitt’s probably going to be chased away by the specter of RomneyCare. That leaves Palin and Perry to battle for the tea party vote, with the GOP establishment left scrambling to anoint an anti-tea-partier behind whom centrists can unify. Gingrich would more than hold his own with The One in a debate and if the economy’s still sluggish and/or foreign policy problems are mounting, his personal peccadilloes wouldn’t be as much of a problem. Good enough for the establishment! As for how he rallies the base behind him after defeating their candidate of choice in the primaries, it’s simple: He borrows a page from Maverick and puts a young, charismatic pol with impeccable conservative credentials on the ticket. Presto change-o, suddenly we’ve got an election! I think. What am I missing here? Exit question: Hey, what about John Thune?