So you can definitively take David Petraeus off that 2012 Republican presidential list:
I thought I’d said no about as many ways as I could. I really do mean no. We have all these artful ways of doing it. I’ve tried Shermanesque responses, which everybody goes and finds out what Sherman said was pretty unequivocally no. I’ve done several different ways. I’ve tried quoting the country song, ‘What Part of No Don’t You Understand?’ I mean, I really do mean that. I feel very privileged to be able to serve our country. I’m honored to continue to do that as long as I can contribute, but I will not, ever, run for political office, I can assure you.
The idea of another Eisenhower scenario had been tempting some Republicans (particularly Iraq-focused neocon types) to talk about a Petraeus candidacy. Or maybe the buzz simply reflected an honest look at the GOP’s 2012 field, which is less than impressive at present.