The NeverTrump website NHJournal (hereinafter NeverTrumpJournal) has lost patience with Sununu:
… Sununu talks about a potential U.S. Senate run like he’s got all the time in the world. … But while Sununu’s slow-walking his Senate plans and sipping cider on his Super 603 tour, Democrats aren’t sitting around. They’re hitting him — hard. … a seven-figure media buy from a progressive group hitting the “Sununu abortion ban.” The TV ad is tough. And it’s very effective. …
And that was just NeverTrumpJournal getting warmed up:
Sununu’s excuses for not making a decision have always been weak. … concerns are growing that Sununu has personal reasons for being reluctant to run … It’s well past time to either suit up or hit the showers.
Well … I’ve got some bad news for NeverTrumpJournal. SUNUNU IS NOT GOING TO RUN FOR UNITED STATES SENATE.
Sununu is not running because he harbors serious doubts that he can beat Hassan.
The plan was to run a “Morning in America” campaign. That is why he is “sipping cider on his Super 603 tour.” More specifically, his sky-high poll numbers would allow him to run a generic I’m-a-Washington-outsider, DC-is-the-problem campaign and coast into the Senate:
Overpromising and failing to deliver is a common theme with Washington, especially when it came to procuring PPE in the height of the COVID pandemic.
So Republican Governors got it done.
— Chris Sununu (@ChrisSununu) May 27, 2021
The problem is that the air is going out of his COVID balloon. As NeverTrumpJournal noted:
And those numbers likely are going to continue to decline as more and more of the public begin to understand that Sununu’s “handling” of COVID was NOT based on science and did NOT make a damn bit of difference, but did material damage to small businesses, individuals who could not get needed non-COVID medical care, and children relegated to “remote” learning … among others.
So … a Senate run against Hassan would be a real dogfight, and our Sun King … unlike his namesake from France … does not have the stomach for a real dogfight. A couple of other considerations point to Sununu not running.
One is money. Spending in the Ayotte-Hassan race was nearly $120 million, with $40 million of that being the candidates and the rest from outside groups. Methinks Sununu would much rather be sipping cider and posting Super 603 selfies on twitter than constantly fundraising. And whether he has the ability to hang with Hassan when it comes to fundraising is an open question.
The other is that Sununu knows he is toxic to many conservative voters in New Hampshire because of his “handling” of COVID. These conservatives are NOT going to vote for Sununu simply to replace Hassan. As a result, Sununu likely would garner a materially smaller percentage of Republican voters than Hassan would of Democrat voters … making it even more of an uphill battle.