Mesa, Arizona (CNN) – In a whispering campaign not ready to go public, some senior Republicans are so anxious about the state of the GOP race they are actually considering the unheard of: a scenario that would lead to another candidate entering the Republican primary race, and potentially an open convention.

They are not unhappy enough, however, to go on the record calling for another candidate to enter the fray. In fact, when pressed, many Republicans say the chatter about another candidate is inevitable in this long and inconclusive primary process. They also say it’s just not likely to happen.

Why?

“If you bring somebody new into the race, that person will lose,” said a senior GOP strategist who admits a bias towards Romney. “The party – especially conservatives – will not respond to somebody who has not gone through the process.”

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