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General Mattis: Count Me Out For 2016

Retired General James Mattis will not be launching an independent bid for the White House. Mattis had been urged by a variety of conservative figures to consider running for president as an alternative candidate.

Two allies of Mr. Mattis sent emails to associates on Friday notifying them that the retired general had closed the door on a campaign. William Kristol, editor of the conservative Weekly Standard magazine, said Mr. Mattis had decided “after much consideration” not to proceed.

“The thoughtfulness and patriotism — and for that matter, the modesty — Jim showed as he reflected on this decision make me more convinced than ever that he would have made a truly admirable president, and also a good candidate,” Mr. Kristol wrote. “But it’s not to be. So we won’t have a President Mattis.”

Joel Searby, a Republican strategist involved in laying the groundwork for a potential Mattis campaign, wrote in a separate email that Mr. Mattis had “decided definitively not to pursue a run for president.”

While it was incredibly unlikely that a third-party campaign for president could be successful, Mattis' potential candidacy was intriguing. Alas, it's just not meant to be.

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