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CNN is reporting that Mitt Romney unsuccessfully tried to recruit Nebraska Sen. Ben Sasse to launch an independent presidential bid against Trump and Clinton.

Sasse, the freshman Republican, has emerged as one of Trump’s foremost critics from the right. Romney and Sasse have talked, the source said, and Romney encouraged Sasse to seriously consider a run.

The conversation was first reported by The Washington Post.

But Sasse is refusing to enter the race.

“We will decline to comment on the senator’s conversations,” Sasse spokesman James Wegmann said. “Sen. Sasse has been clear about this when asked before: He has three little kids and the only callings he wants — raising them and serving Nebraskans. The answer is no.”

A Romney spokeswoman declined to comment.

The Nebraska senator’s rejection comes as anti-Trump Republicans struggle to find a candidate willing to wage a third-party bid.

Did the GOP learn nothing from Ross Perot’s independent bids in 1992 and 1996? The US has already suffered under eight years of a Clinton Presidency due (at least in part) to an “independent” candidate who gave the Democrat candidate the edge necessary to win. Are they planning to repeat this strategy in 2016?

The Republicans apparently won’t be satisfied until they have shot themselves repeatedly in both feet.

Mark Cuban, the tech mogul billionaire who owns the NBA’s Dallas Mavericks, confirmed a Washington Post report that he’d heard from Trump opponents attempting to recruit a candidate. Cuban declined to name the people who were involved.

“My conversations with them were minimal,” he said. “They reached out to my right-hand man who is my D.C. guy.”

Hillary Clinton is already the favored candidate to win by most pollsters and oddsmakers. She really doesn’t need help from an independent candidate recruited by disaffected Republicans.