National Review staff writer and Operation Iraqi Freedom veteran David French said Sunday he will not mount an independent presidential run.
French made the announcement in an article posted on the National Review's website Sunday evening, saying that while he opposes both presumptive Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton, he determined after "serious study" that he is "not the right person for this effort."
"I gave it serious thought — as a pretty darn obscure lawyer, writer, and veteran — only because we live in historic times," he wrote. "Never before have both parties failed so spectacularly, producing two dishonest, deceitful candidates who should be disqualified from running for town council, much less leader of the free world."
"Given the timing, the best chance for success goes to a person who either is extraordinarily wealthy (or has immediate access to extraordinary wealth) or is a transformational political talent," French wrote. "I’m grateful for the opportunity to serve my country, and I thank God for the successes I’ve had as a lawyer and a writer, but it is plain to me that I’m not the right person for this effort."
French's name was first brought into the political conversation when Weekly Standard editor Bill Kristol kicked off the speculation, and the backlash, when he claimed over the Memorial Day Weekend: “There will be an independent candidate -- an impressive one, with a strong team and a real chance.”
Sources told Fox News that Kristol was looking to recruit the constitutional lawyer and Bronze Star recipient.
Kristol, along with other conservative pundits, long has been working to attract an independent candidate to run in November amid lingering concerns in some wings of the Republican Party about Trump’s conservative credentials. This effort to date has struggled to recruit a willing candidate, while running into logistical hurdles -- including the rules and deadlines for getting new names on the ballot.