Rep. John Shadegg (R-Ariz.) already has a favorite for the 2012 GOP presidential nomination: South Carolina Gov. Mark SanfordMark SanfordCheney clashes with Trump Sessions-Tuberville Senate runoff heats up in Alabama The Memo: Can the Never Trumpers succeed? MORE.

During an appearance on MSNBC's "Morning Joe" on Thursday, Shadegg said, "I like a lot of people in 2012 on the Republican side. I'd probably have to go with Mark Sanford first. I think Mark has proven that he is young, energetic, has new ideas and is a fresh face of the Republican Party."

Sanford is a former member of the House who has publicly clashed with House Majority Whip Jim Clyburn (D-S.C.) on whether South Carolina will accept funds from the $787-billion economic stimulus law.

Asked whether he would like Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin to lead the Republican Party in 2012, Shadegg responded, "I think Sarah Palin has to step forward on the national scene much more than she has so far and we have to look at this issue."

- Bob Cusack