So, is the VP race down to Portman and Pawlenty? Update: Fewer women considered due to media’s Palin scrutiny?

posted at 4:02 pm on June 19, 2012 by Allahpundit

WaPo follows up on this morning’s bombshell about the non-vetting of Rubio by confirming that (a) indeed, he’s not being vetted at the moment and (b) the two safest picks in the field are.

Other vice presidential candidates, including Sen. Rob Portman (Ohio) and former Minnesota governor Tim Pawlenty, are undergoing a more intensive review, according to two Republicans close to the campaign…

“By the time you apply the gravitas test, which is really 95 percent of what Governor Romney’s looking at — people when introduced to America nobody would think twice about their ability to be president if necessary — that wipes out 90 percent of the field,” said one outside adviser close to the Romney operation who requested anonymity to speak candidly about the selection process.

The adviser said other Republicans once presumed to be contenders, including Sen. Kelly Ayotte (N.H.) and New Mexico Gov. Susana Martinez, fall under this same category. More-experienced candidates said to be under consideration include Rep. Paul Ryan, the House Budget Committee chairman, as well as Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal.

If Rubio’s too young and too unseasoned, does that mean Christie is too? He’s nine years older than Rubio and holds an executive position but has spent less time in political office than even Rubio has if you include the latter’s tenure in the state legislature. Mitch Daniels is presumably also out since he’s reportedly set to be named the next president of Purdue. So, it seems, is Bob McDonnell, who wasn’t being vetted either as of three weeks ago. What about Paul Ryan? He was coy when asked about this in May and he’s part of Romney’s bus tour featuring a cavalcade of would-be VPs, but he’s also just a year older than Rubio and has no executive experience. What’s the logic at this point for picking him and embracing an all-out “Mediscare” campaign from Democrats when he could go with the far safer/blander Portman or Pawlenty instead? It would excite the base, but Romney’s not worried about the base anymore. If he was, he wouldn’t be dodging questions over whether he’ll rescind Obama’s new DREAM order if elected. In fact, I think the people who see skittishness over immigration in Romney’s decision to pass on Rubio are right: If he picks him or Ryan as VP, then to some extent the election will be about something other than the economy. That’s precisely what Romney’s trying to avoid; it’s Obama who wants a “choice” election, not the GOP.

That leaves Portman, Pawlenty, and maybe Jindal, who does have executive experience, would add diversity to the ticket, and would certainly fire up the base. But Jindal endorsed Perry in the primaries and he’s the same age as Rubio. He’d be an inspired choice but not as safe as Portman or Pawlenty, and if there’s one thing we know about Mitt, he prefers safe to inspired. So that leaves two: The Bush alum from the key swing state or the guy who was vetted four years ago from the unwinnable blue state. I thought Portman was a prohibitive favorite and I still think there’s probably a 75 percent chance that he gets it, but as more polls come out showing how many voters still blame Bush for the economy, Team Mitt must be wondering whether Portman’s record as Bush’s budget chief will become a major liability on their key issue. If it’s true that Romney’s VP credo is “first do no harm,” then Pawlenty really should have the edge. The most damaging soundbite he’s had in the last few years is the one about “ObamneyCare” and I doubt you’ll see Team O want to focus on that.

Exit question: Why would any Republican want to leak the fact that Rubio’s not even being seriously considered for VP, especially at a moment when Obama’s just made a splash with Latino voters via his new DREAM policy? It’s one thing not to choose the guy, it’s another thing to signal that he’s not even worthy of consideration. And no, this isn’t about Romney trying to completely distance himself from Rubio because of the politics of DREAM: Remember, after O made his announcement on Friday, Romney specifically mentioned Rubio in his response. He’s a bona fide conservative rock star with a national future. Why not pay him the minimum respect of vetting him? Or are Ana Navarro and Ben Domenech right in thinking that this is really about the Charlie Crist alums in Romney’s campaign wanting a little payback for what Rubio did to their guy in 2010?


Update: Depressing.

In particular, few women except for New Hampshire Sen. Kelly Ayotte – a freshman lawmaker from New England with only scant federal experience – are thought to be under consideration by Romney.

“I think unfortunately, Palin poisoned the well on that,” said one informal Romney adviser, fretting that any woman selected as VP would draw inevitable comparisons to the former Alaska governor. “I would guess if I were inside the Romney mind that they’re worried that any woman chosen will be subjected to a higher level of scrutiny.”

Update: Note that that last quote comes from an “informal advisor” to the campaign, not any of the inner circle, so who knows how much of it is pure speculation versus informed speculation derived from chatting with key players. In fairness to Mitt, there aren’t many woman officeholders who fit his criteria this time around. Ayotte and Martinez are both promising but both new to their current offices. They’d be stronger picks in 2016 than they are now.


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Palin poisoned the well? If Romney thinks he can get away without heavy scrutiny of his VP pick, even with the dullest of dull choices, he is sadly, sadly mistaken. Quayle got the nitpicking and he was as whitebread as it gets.

Plus Romney continues to prove his lack of connection to the base and disinterest in winning the votes of Palin’s many fans and admirers by continuing to slam her for doing nothing more than her best in 2008, whose best was better than anyone else could have done in her shoes, and was better than both Romney circa 2008 and that of the actual candidate in 2008.

He’ll. Never. Get. My. Vote.

alwaysfiredup on June 19, 2012 at 4:31 PM

Mitt, like Barry, er Barack, can not suffer to be upstaged.

Schadenfreude on June 19, 2012 at 4:31 PM

Just when one thinks that Mitt is not McCain…

Schadenfreude on June 19, 2012 at 4:29 PM

McCain picked Palin.

Red Cloud on June 19, 2012 at 4:31 PM

He’ll. Never. Get. My. Vote.

alwaysfiredup on June 19, 2012 at 4:31 PM

David Axelrod thanks you for your vote of confidence.

Red Cloud on June 19, 2012 at 4:32 PM

Pawlenty can’t even guarantee Minnesota’s few electoral votes let alone any others, why would he even consider Pawlenty?

RJL on June 19, 2012 at 4:32 PM

Pawlenty. he even looks similiar to Mitt.

gerrym51 on June 19, 2012 at 4:31 PM

+1 I had the same thought when I saw the picture. So does Portman…maybe they don’t have his hair.

Schadenfreude on June 19, 2012 at 4:32 PM

“informal Romney advisor”? Really? That is a credible source? Come on people…pull your head out of your rear…

tpw on June 19, 2012 at 4:32 PM

Indeed. Plus, he was the catalyst for Obama’s unconstitutional DREAM fiasco.

Schadenfreude on June 19, 2012 at 4:26 PM

Maybe if Obumbler drops Biden and Hillary says no, Rubio can be his running mate.

VorDaj on June 19, 2012 at 4:32 PM

Some of the reactions here are so…predictable.

Look, people: first rule of VP picks is do no harm. No matter what the upside of a potential pick is, if they have major downsides, then they’re out. Rubio does: his immigration position isn’t even popular with 90% of the friggin’ people screaming on this comment section, for cryin’ out loud!

More importantly, he’s inexperienced and unvetted. You want to know what the first words out of the Obama team’s mouth would be if Rubio was picked? David. Rivera. If you don’t know what that means, or why it would be such a disastrously off-message problem for the Romney campaign, then that’s the entire point: a relatively unknown (but very real) political corruption/proximity-to-impropriety problem that would be blanket-covered 24/7 by the press and distract from the economic message.

Allahpundit has got it wrong, though: while Pawlenty and Portman ARE the leading choices (Pawlenty is the safest — without any significant negatives — which might make him the frontrunner, if not for Portman’s OH connections and added bonuses like fluency in Spanish), Jindal and Ryan are definitely in the running too. Those are the only four. And those are the only ones that SHOULD be in the running. Serious, experienced governors (or in Ryan’s case Budget Chairman) that provide either balance or amplification to the underlying message.

Esoteric on June 19, 2012 at 4:32 PM

Walker, West, Ryan or Condi Rice….

Static21 on June 19, 2012 at 4:33 PM

Bishop on June 19, 2012 at 4:29 PM

???

HerneTheHunter on June 19, 2012 at 4:33 PM

McCain picked Palin.

Red Cloud on June 19, 2012 at 4:31 PM

…and then let his dogs pick her apart, from the left to the right.

Schadenfreude on June 19, 2012 at 4:33 PM

It’s either Jindal or Ryan for me. Portman and Pawlenty aren’t that bad, just too timid. I’m still with Susana Martinez – unless she has got some nasty skeletons in her vetting closet, she’s perfect in every aspect imaginable.

Archivarix on June 19, 2012 at 4:34 PM

Walker, West, Ryan or Condi Rice….

Static21 on June 19, 2012 at 4:33 PM

Not Condi Rice. She was a force in making Obama president. She hid his and Hillary’s dossiers, thus his passports and travels to Pookistan – what passport did he use?

Schadenfreude on June 19, 2012 at 4:34 PM

Obama/Rubio in 2012
(Because we believe that the U.S.A. belongs to all of North and South America)

VorDaj on June 19, 2012 at 4:34 PM

…and then let his dogs pick her apart, from the left to the right.

Schadenfreude on June 19, 2012 at 4:33 PM

Romney’s already busy telling the media to go pi$$ up a rope on a number of issues. Did you see his response to the Oblahblah campaign’s bleating about Romney supporters heckling Teh One?

Red Cloud on June 19, 2012 at 4:34 PM

Both Romney and Portman and Pawlenty have that moderate milquetoast feel, but, even more negatively, with due respect because I am great of Romney, they all also have that kind of semi-vacuous semi-patronizing semi-paternalistic gaze. Really, I think.
But with Romney he can get beyond that by being decisive and forceful on the trail, as like on immigration. But if he added a vp that was seen in the same light, this could have a synergistic negative multiplier effect, and it could set Romney way back with conservatives, and with the wider electorate that wants a decisive leader.
Of course the real electrifying choice would be Palin. She is, it turns out, the most eloquent spokesmen for the conservative cause. Show the spirit of the age!

anotherJoe on June 19, 2012 at 4:34 PM

Jindal is the best pick out there. I certainly hope that his vetting is still to come. Portman and Pawlenty are safe, but just continue a trend in boring VP choices. Ryan is the best choice among those who have received intense scrutiny.

Meanwhile I think the lack of female candidates being vetted has less to do with anything about Palin and more to do with the fact that there really aren’t many female candidates with any sort of experience to make the leap. Romney is the sort of guy who would want an experienced name, male or female, Palin precedent or no Palin precedent. It’s a major part of his campaign vs. the least experienced and most incompetent President in U.S. history. That said, I don’t get why Ayotte would receive any sort of attention. Of the potential female picks out there, she’s among the worst possible choices. Northeastern, not all that conservative, but not a name that would inspire independents either.

Gingotts on June 19, 2012 at 4:35 PM

“I think unfortunately, Palin poisoned the well on that,” said one informal Romney adviser, fretting that any woman selected as VP would draw inevitable comparisons to the former Alaska governor.

“Palin ;poisoned the well?”

Wonder why I haven’t responded to any of the junk mail/emails from Romney soliciting contrabutions?

bw222 on June 19, 2012 at 4:35 PM

Cathy McMorris-Rodgers.
You heard it hear first.

Mr. Arrogant on June 19, 2012 at 4:35 PM

…and then let his dogs pick her apart, from the left to the right.

Schadenfreude on June 19, 2012 at 4:33 PM

Yep, but she didn’t die, she has just gotten stronger..:)

idesign on June 19, 2012 at 4:35 PM

Bottom Line:

The Media.
Is.
The enemy.

Dr. Carlo Lombardi on June 19, 2012 at 4:35 PM

*the line twitches….slowly, ever so slowly you start to reel in*

Bishop on June 19, 2012 at 4:35 PM

Regarding a woman for VP, the only candidates I’ve heard mentioned are first term Governors and Senators. Aside from Palin, who won’t be nominated, are there any with more experience than being a first-termer?

If the answer is no, and if Mitt is looking for a VP candidate with executive experience, then that’s that. No reason to place any nefarious reasons to it.

Uncledave on June 19, 2012 at 4:23 PM

Oklahoma Gov. Mary Fallin. She is in her first term as Governor but served a few terms in Congress before that. She’s an energy expert too.

Former Connecticut Gov. Jodi Rell would be another.

Here’s somenoe who would really be a stunning pick: former FDIC Chair Sheila Bair.

And there is always Condoleeza Rice as well.

rockmom on June 19, 2012 at 4:36 PM

“I think unfortunately, Palin poisoned the well on that,” said one informal Romney adviser,

Nonsense. She would make a better president than Romney, let alone VP.

davidk on June 19, 2012 at 4:36 PM

Plus Romney continues to prove his lack of connection to the base and disinterest in winning the votes of Palin’s many fans and admirers by continuing to slam her for doing nothing more than her best in 2008, whose best was better than anyone else could have done in her shoes, and was better than both Romney circa 2008 and that of the actual candidate in 2008.

When did Romney EVER do this? I mean, ever, once?

Wait, you’re not referring to the anonymous quote of an “outside advisor” in this article, are you seriously?

Are you seriously so blinded with Palin-rage that you’re not even distinguishing between sources now, just conflating them all into an indiscriminate massey lump of The Bad Guys?

Furthermore, that advisor’s comment wasn’t even really an attack on Palin. It was simply a reflection of the political reality that the Palin self-destruction in 2008 has rendered female picks subject to heightened scrutiny and attacks. Which is true. It makes no sense to get angry about somebody acknowledging reality. What you’re doing in that case is raging about your unhappiness with reality…which doesn’t make it cease to exist.

Esoteric on June 19, 2012 at 4:36 PM

Jindal, Portman, or Pawlenty.

I’ll take any one of them for the win.

I am getting very excited for November to get here!

LASue on June 19, 2012 at 4:36 PM

Here’s the difference, in my estimation.

McCain was screwed if he didn’t have a game changer. He found one. Then he frittered his chances away by letting his incompetent band of “handlers” pretty much kill every positive aspect of her.

Romney has momentum. He doesn’t need a game changer on the bottom of the ticket to beat the SCOAMF the way things are going now.

Red Cloud on June 19, 2012 at 4:36 PM

Schadenfreude on June 19, 2012 at 4:18 PM

I think I’m ready for the Schaden part.

I hope this is a wild rumor.

Its time for bold colors, not pale pastels.

alecj on June 19, 2012 at 4:22 PM

This isn’t even going pale pastels. More like invisible beige neutral.

INC on June 19, 2012 at 4:36 PM

He was obviously referring to the 75 or so members who belong to the Democratic Socialists of America. Duh.

steebo77 on June 19, 2012 at 4:22 PM

No. What would have made that obvious is if he had referred to them as DSA.

He didn’t. He called them Communists.

If he doesn’t know the difference, it disqualifies him for veep. If he does know the difference, and engaged in such demagoguery willfully, it disqualifies him even for Congress.

JohnGalt23 on June 19, 2012 at 4:37 PM

White/Whiter 2012

inthemiddle on June 19, 2012 at 4:11 PM

Even before you made this stupid comment, we all knew that you’re going to vote for Baracka based solely on the color of his skin, not the content of his character.

And your side calls US the racists?

UltimateBob on June 19, 2012 at 4:37 PM

Walker, West, Ryan or Condi Rice….

Static21 on June 19, 2012 at 4:33 PM

Good, Okay+, Okay, or Awful.

ThePrimordialOrderedPair on June 19, 2012 at 4:38 PM

Schadenfreude on June 19, 2012 at 4:34 PM

Condi more for the OMG factor…lsm head’s would really explode..

Static21 on June 19, 2012 at 4:38 PM

How can anyone with a straight face claim that Bush’s budget guy is a ‘safe’ pick?
And if not him, the guy that couldn’t draw flies if he was covered with dung.
These maybe the two worst choices of ANYONE mentioned.

AmeriCuda on June 19, 2012 at 4:38 PM

Not Condi Rice. She was a force in making Obama president. She hid his and Hillary’s dossiers, thus his passports and travels to Pookistan – what passport did he use?

Schadenfreude on June 19, 2012 at 4:34 PM

She has also helped to get a lot of American troops killed.

“We in America know the benevolence that is at the heart of Islam.” (Secretary of State Condoleeza “Clueless Condi” Rice, 2005, at the U.S. State Department’s annual Ramadan dinner).

VorDaj on June 19, 2012 at 4:38 PM

Mike Castle is still the dark horse choice for VP; he’s available, vivacious, and can attract the limp-noodle vote.

Bishop on June 19, 2012 at 4:38 PM

Oklahoma Gov. Mary Fallin. She is in her first term as Governor but served a few terms in Congress before that. She’s an energy expert too.

Former Connecticut Gov. Jodi Rell would be another.

Here’s somenoe who would really be a stunning pick: former FDIC Chair Sheila Bair.

And there is always Condoleeza Rice as well.

rockmom on June 19, 2012 at 4:36 PM

I remember before the 2008 primaries w were discussing consevative women and their futures in politics.

Then when Palin was picked as VP everybody but us were saying, “Who is this?” “What a surprise.”

Not to us!

davidk on June 19, 2012 at 4:39 PM

The more I think about this, the more I smell a big, fat, freaking head fake.

JohnGalt23 on June 19, 2012 at 4:39 PM

I hope all the people tearing their hair out in anguish on this thread know exactly why Sarah Palin was a risk in 2008, and why McCain had to take the risk.

KingGold on June 19, 2012 at 4:12 PM

Palin was a risk because she’d been ignored by the national media so everything about her was “news”, and there wasn’t time to separate fact from fiction before the election (and lots of GOPers had no interest in doing so anyway, she was-and is-disposable to them).

Guess what? Portman and Pawlenty have also been ignored (Pawlenty slightly less so). There will be made-up “scandals” all over the place about anybody he picks, “boring white guy no one’s ever heard of” included.

Romney cannot control the narrative, he can only play by their rules. And he will lose by those rules, too, barring some spectacular flame-out by Obumbles.

alwaysfiredup on June 19, 2012 at 4:40 PM

Why not pay him the minimum respect of vetting him? Or are Ana Navarro and Ben Domenech right in thinking that this is really about the Charlie Crist alums in Romney’s campaign wanting a little payback for what Rubio did to their guy in 2010?

Being vetted is not a walk in the park. Why go through the hassle if you’re not under serious consideration? I very much doubt Rubio’s feelings are hurt. Cavuto interviewed him a little while ago and he could not have been more gracious (and articulate). As for the payback conspiracy theorists, I’m not even going to bother to read their nonsense.

Buy Danish on June 19, 2012 at 4:40 PM

T-Paw was/is 100% opposed to gays serving openly in the military.

That gives Hussein the “choice election” he is looking for…

Portman is an ex-Bush aide.

Both are non-starters for RINO Romney

Eph on June 19, 2012 at 4:40 PM

Bottom Line:

The Media.
Is.
The enemy.

Dr. Carlo Lombardi on June 19, 2012 at 4:35 PM

Yup.

the_nile on June 19, 2012 at 4:40 PM

White/Whiter 2012

inthemiddle on June 19, 2012 at 4:11 PM

DopeHead/CrackedHead – 2012

RickB on June 19, 2012 at 4:40 PM

Condi more for the OMG factor…lsm head’s would really explode..

Static21 on June 19, 2012 at 4:38 PM

Rice is really a leftist and she was an utter failure at State.

ThePrimordialOrderedPair on June 19, 2012 at 4:40 PM

Jindal is the best pick out there.

Gingotts on June 19, 2012 at 4:35 PM

Agreed.

A Jindal pick would make me somewhat enthusiastic about the ticket. While Romney is no conservative, at least he chose a conservative successor.

A Pawlenty pick would put me to sleep.

A Portman pick would make seriously reconsider even voting in the fall.

Norwegian on June 19, 2012 at 4:40 PM

Mike Castle is still the dark horse choice for VP; he’s available, vivacious, and can attract the limp-noodle vote.

Bishop on June 19, 2012 at 4:38 PM

And just think about all those Delaware electoral votes he’d garner.

davidk on June 19, 2012 at 4:40 PM

I think they are keeping their powder dry. They saw what the MSM did to Palin and how undeserved it was. The Republicans are finally realizing that the MSM isn’t to be trusted. Scott Brown won’t be involved with a debate if MSDNC is involved. I say keep the decision under their hats until the convention. It gives the Dems at the MSM less time to make stuff up about the VP candidate.

neyney on June 19, 2012 at 4:40 PM

“Former Connecticut Gov. Jodi Rell would be another.”

Second look at third party candidate ????

Eph on June 19, 2012 at 4:41 PM

It can’t be a minority or a woman because the press will savage them, just as they did to Sarah Palin, Alberto Gonzales, Miguel Estrada, etc. As far as liberals are concerned, only Democrats are allowed to promote special interests — whenever the GOP does it, it’s either pandering or a sellout.

Socratease on June 19, 2012 at 4:41 PM

Red Cloud on June 19, 2012 at 4:34 PM

Yes, I did. Then came this thread.

Schadenfreude on June 19, 2012 at 4:41 PM

On October 11, 2006, Secretary of State Condoleezza “Clueless Condi” Rice said the following:

“I believe that there could be no greater legacy for America than to help to bring into being a Palestinian state for a people who have suffered too long (presumably because of the Israelis – the Jews), who have been humiliated too long (presumably because of the Israelis – the Jews), who have not reached their potential for too long (presumably because of the Israelis – the Jews), and who have so much to give to the international community and to all of us (And what would that be? Raising more children to be suicide bombers against infidels?).”

Condi Rice is a dangerous pro-Muslim and anti-Semite nut case.

VorDaj on June 19, 2012 at 4:42 PM

fretting that any woman selected as VP would draw inevitable comparisons to the former Alaska governor.

…And come up wanting. Seriously, does anybody think Susana Martinez or Kelly Ayote could give a political speech like Palin. Draw the crowds like Palin. Hold their own in a foreign policy debate with a few weeks notice like Palin. Don’t get me wrong, I like them both and love them in their positions, but I have seen them both a couple of times talk and in comparison, they pale in the Palin test.

So shove it up your rear anonymous Romney advisor.

KMav on June 19, 2012 at 4:42 PM

Here’s the difference, in my estimation.

McCain was screwed if he didn’t have a game changer. He found one. Then he frittered his chances away by letting his incompetent band of “handlers” pretty much kill every positive aspect of her.

Romney has momentum. He doesn’t need a game changer on the bottom of the ticket to beat the SCOAMF the way things are going now.

Exactly. The stupidest possible thing Romney could do right now is make a VP pick simply in order to “excite the base” or “generate buzz,” because with the fundamentals of this race tilting his way the name of the game now is “DON’T F**K IT UP AND DON’T CHANGE THE CONVERSATION.” Therefore you pick a VP who is safe, smart, experienced, ready to be President on Day 1, and who brings nice complimentary qualities to the ticket.

Pawlenty is a good choice precisely because he actually fills all those roles: he’s proven to be an extremely effective attack-dog for Mitt on the campaign trail, he’s got true blue-collar working class appeal as a son of truck drivers and self-proclaimed “Sam’s Club Republican,” he’s a Midwesterner who walks and talks like the sorts of folks who populate MN, WI, MI, IA and PA, and he doesn’t put his foot in his mouth. His record in Minnesota as governor leaves no openings for attacks, he doesn’t have Bush associations…

…hell, I just realized I’m talking myself into deciding he’s got to be the right pick. Seriously: if this election really does turn into Romney playing for the Rust Belt while Obama throws a Latino hail Mary, then Pawlenty really is the right choice.

Esoteric on June 19, 2012 at 4:42 PM

I think not vetting Rubio is just as Allahpundit suggested: Romney wants to make it clear that this election is NOT about immigration.

I also think that Rubio is too inexperienced for the job and he’s already pandered in an egregious fashion and, in so doing, has made illegal immigration his own signature issue.

Christie, too, is too inexperienced.

I like Pawlenty very much. He has the experience for the job. He’s reliable and he has ‘Minnesota Nice’ which makes him a good negotiator and a very good representative for the nation. Unlike Biden, he can actually comport himself in such a way as to be a credit to the nation. When his own run for the nomination was at an end, he recognized the need, for the good of the nation, to weld the base together and rally behind the strongest candidate for the nomination and he did so immediately. Pawenty has genuine hands on experience with runaway Democrat budgets, too, and managed, in one of the bluest of states, to actually cut spending for the first time in 150 years. It wasn’t flashy, but he stood his ground, used common sense and good management skills, and persevered over the long hall. He may remind some of that respectable blue sedan… but, like that respectable blue sedan, he’s a workhorse and suitable for all occasions. In his own right, he’s a star.

thatsafactjack on June 19, 2012 at 4:43 PM

Please don’t pick Portman, not cuz I don’t like him, but I don’t want a special election here in Ohio next year if Romney wins. It would be made even worse if we don’t wise up and get rid of Sherrod Brown this year. 2 D’s as Senators(maybe), gag.

gsherin on June 19, 2012 at 4:43 PM

And just think about all those Delaware electoral votes he’d garner.

davidk on June 19, 2012 at 4:40 PM

Like a ripe glistening cherry plopped onto a heaping pile of chocolatey sundae goodness and covered with fluffy whipped cream.

Bishop on June 19, 2012 at 4:43 PM

Heads, the guy who helped Bush sink the economy.
Tails, the guy who want’s to outlaw gasoline.

AmeriCuda on June 19, 2012 at 4:43 PM

VPs don’t have a great record of making the left seat.

Rubio has a great future in the Senate and a good shot at the White House downstream no matter what happens with Romney.

Of course if Romney loses, there might not be much to be President of in four years.

I’ve said for a long time that if the race is close Romney will got for a non-controversial pick.

If it looks like a blowout either way – he’s stomping Obama (ohpleasespleaseplease…) or vice-versa (can someone update me on the immigration policies for Belize and Colombia, just in case?) he’ll go for the long bomb.

JEM on June 19, 2012 at 4:43 PM

“Wonder why I haven’t responded to any of the junk mail/emails from Romney soliciting contributions?”

+1

Eph on June 19, 2012 at 4:43 PM

When did Romney EVER do this? I mean, ever, once?

Wait, you’re not referring to the anonymous quote of an “outside advisor” in this article, are you seriously?

Are you seriously so blinded with Palin-rage that you’re not even distinguishing between sources now, just conflating them all into an indiscriminate massey lump of The Bad Guys?

Furthermore, that advisor’s comment wasn’t even really an attack on Palin. It was simply a reflection of the political reality that the Palin self-destruction in 2008 has rendered female picks subject to heightened scrutiny and attacks. Which is true. It makes no sense to get angry about somebody acknowledging reality. What you’re doing in that case is raging about your unhappiness with reality…which doesn’t make it cease to exist.

Esoteric on June 19, 2012 at 4:36 PM

Romney’s campaign staff have repeatedly attacked Palin, including one of his fundraisers in New York.
http://www.nationalreview.com/corner/295153/romney-wins-over-donors-warning-huckabee-palin-ticket-convention-katrina-trinko

Buckshot Bill on June 19, 2012 at 4:43 PM

steebo77 on June 19, 2012 at 4:14 PM

Norm Coleman was never a governor and there’s a good reason your list of circus clowns isn’t being discussed.

bw222 on June 19, 2012 at 4:43 PM

Oklahoma Gov. Mary Fallin. She is in her first term as Governor but served a few terms in Congress before that. She’s an energy expert too.

Former Connecticut Gov. Jodi Rell would be another.

Here’s somenoe who would really be a stunning pick: former FDIC Chair Sheila Bair.

And there is always Condoleeza Rice as well.

rockmom on June 19, 2012 at 4:36 PM

Oh my, I just looked Mary Fallin up – what a beauty! The GOP appears to have a practically inexhaustible supply of conservative hotties.

I’ll pass on Sheila Bair and Condi Rice, though. The first is the personified reason why our financial system is such a corrupt mess; the other, why our Middle East affairs are a disaster.

Archivarix on June 19, 2012 at 4:44 PM

Jindal is hands down the best choice.

stout77 on June 19, 2012 at 4:44 PM

Palin poisoned the well?

That’s like saying that her windows got in the way of a vandal’s rocks.

Akzed on June 19, 2012 at 4:44 PM

Allah, do you think we could have a Hot Air survey for preferred VP choice.

midgeorgian on June 19, 2012 at 4:44 PM

Furthermore, that advisor’s comment wasn’t even really an attack on Palin. It was simply a reflection of the political reality that the Palin self-destruction in 2008 has rendered female picks subject to heightened scrutiny and attacks.

Esoteric on June 19, 2012 at 4:36 PM

It wasn’t a “self” destruction. What was the difference between Palin’s ill advised refusal to list what newspapers she reads and Obama referring to the Austrian language or talking about 10K people dying in a tornado? Media coverage. That’s it. That’s the only difference.

Kataklysmic on June 19, 2012 at 4:45 PM

Here’s the difference, in my estimation.

McCain was screwed if he didn’t have a game changer. He found one. Then he frittered his chances away by letting his incompetent band of “handlers” pretty much kill every positive aspect of her.

Romney has momentum. He doesn’t need a game changer on the bottom of the ticket to beat the SCOAMF the way things are going now.

Exactly. The stupidest possible thing Romney could do right now is make a VP pick simply in order to “excite the base” or “generate buzz,” because with the fundamentals of this race tilting his way the name of the game now is “DON’T SCREW IT UP AND DON’T CHANGE THE CONVERSATION.” Therefore you pick a VP who is safe, smart, experienced, ready to be President on Day 1, and who brings nice complimentary qualities to the ticket.

Pawlenty is a good choice precisely because he actually fills all those roles: he’s proven to be an extremely effective attack-dog for Mitt on the campaign trail, he’s got true blue-collar working class appeal as a son of truck drivers and self-proclaimed “Sam’s Club Republican,” he’s a Midwesterner who walks and talks like the sorts of folks who populate MN, WI, MI, IA and PA, and he doesn’t put his foot in his mouth. His record in Minnesota as governor leaves no openings for attacks, he doesn’t have Bush associations…

…hell, I just realized I’m talking myself into deciding he’s got to be the right pick. Seriously: if this election really does turn into Romney playing for the Rust Belt while Obama throws a Latino hail Mary, then Pawlenty really is the right choice.

Esoteric on June 19, 2012 at 4:45 PM

the Palin self-destruction in 2008

Esoteric on June 19, 2012 at 4:36 PM

There was no Palin self-destruction in 2008. There was Palin destruction, sure. She didn’t do it to herself. I’ve seen any number of interviews by any number of politicoes in the past four years that are far worse than any she gave in 2008. Palin was a much better debater than Rick Perry, by far. Yet he’s not “destroyed”. Neither is she. She’s going on strong and her endorsement is the “get” of the year. Her political future is solid, despite the volume of cries of “she’s finished!!!! Really, we mean it!! No, this time, she’s done!” that have been tossed around ad nauseum.

And yes, Romney hates Palin. He hated her in 2008, he hired all of her detractors coming out of 2008, and his people still can’t keep from badmouthing her. If Romney wants us not to impute that to him, he’d better do something about it. Some of us pay attention and have very long memories.

Gary Johnson for President.

alwaysfiredup on June 19, 2012 at 4:45 PM

I personally think it’s going to be Bob McDonnell.

Though, I’d hate to lose him as governor of Virginia, but he’d make a great VP.

ButterflyDragon on June 19, 2012 at 4:45 PM

VorDaj on June 19, 2012 at 4:42 PM

Dude-I was just spit-balling..promise, I won’t pick her as VP..haha

Static21 on June 19, 2012 at 4:45 PM

Oops, sorry about the double post.

Esoteric on June 19, 2012 at 4:46 PM

Mike Castle is still the dark horse choice for VP; he’s available, vivacious, and can attract the limp-noodle vote.

Bishop on June 19, 2012 at 4:38 PM

Castle’s ears just might be bigger than Obama’s.

bw222 on June 19, 2012 at 4:46 PM

Palin poisoned the well? If Romney thinks he can get away without heavy scrutiny of his VP pick, even with the dullest of dull choices, he is sadly, sadly mistaken. Quayle got the nitpicking and he was as whitebread as it gets.

Plus Romney continues to prove his lack of connection to the base and disinterest in winning the votes of Palin’s many fans and admirers by continuing to slam her for doing nothing more than her best in 2008, whose best was better than anyone else could have done in her shoes, and was better than both Romney circa 2008 and that of the actual candidate in 2008.

He’ll. Never. Get. My. Vote.

alwaysfiredup on June 19, 2012 at 4:31 PM

First of all, no one gives a crap about your vote.

Second, if you can’t understand the difference in scrutiny of a white guy GOP VP and a woman or a black guy for that matter, you are an irrational dolt. The left thinks they own women and blacks and will go to any length to personally destroy these people, as they are viewed as traitors.

Palin made it too easy for them because she was not ready for national politics. If you can’t given an answer about what you read or Supreme Court decisions that you disagree with, you do not deserve to be on the ticket. Period.

The Count on June 19, 2012 at 4:46 PM

With the exception of the butthurt Palin cultists, this has actually been a pretty decent discussion.

Red Cloud on June 19, 2012 at 4:47 PM

Scott Walker.

You want to witness a leftist meltdown that would shock the solar system, choose that guy.

Bishop on June 19, 2012 at 4:47 PM

I remember before the 2008 primaries w were discussing consevative women and their futures in politics.

Then when Palin was picked as VP everybody but us were saying, “Who is this?” “What a surprise.”

Not to us!

davidk on June 19, 2012 at 4:39 PM

Yeah, and most of the guys here wanted Palin on the ticket because she has a nice rack that they enjoy looking at. They didn’t know a thing about her.

rockmom on June 19, 2012 at 4:47 PM

“I think unfortunately, Palin poisoned the well on that,” said one informal Romney adviser, fretting that any woman selected as VP would draw inevitable comparisons to the former Alaska governor.

Oh come on- such drivel. It’s not about women at all. Whoever is picked will be excoriated and dragged through the sewers of America by the socialist worshiping press. That’s what the left does best and their is none better at it than this administration. Ask Senator Obama’s Illinois competition.
Palin didn’t poison the well -the GOP poisoned her image from the end of McCain’s failed candidacy. They pray ed that the media would eliminate her and when she outsmarted the leftist media -the elitist GOP and their RINO-winged media stepped in and systematically destroyed her–one,”she’s not ready” at a time. They feared that the little guys would vote for her and they’d lose their RINO power.

Don L on June 19, 2012 at 4:47 PM

I personally think it’s going to be Bob McDonnell.

Though, I’d hate to lose him as governor of Virginia, but he’d make a great VP.

ButterflyDragon on June 19, 2012 at 4:45 PM

I agree, I also live in VA…He would be a good pick. He and Romney could be twins as well..

Static21 on June 19, 2012 at 4:47 PM

Please don’t pick Portman, not cuz I don’t like him, but I don’t want a special election here in Ohio next year if Romney wins. It would be made even worse if we don’t wise up and get rid of Sherrod Brown this year. 2 D’s as Senators(maybe), gag.

gsherin on June 19, 2012 at 4:43 PM

Yep, that’s the problem with picking a senator from a swing state. It could backfire next year. Jindal’s my choice for VP.

midgeorgian on June 19, 2012 at 4:48 PM

Akzed on June 19, 2012 at 4:44 PM

Good analogy.

INC on June 19, 2012 at 4:48 PM

Palin poisoned the well?

That’s like saying that her windows got in the way of a vandal’s rocks.

Akzed on June 19, 2012 at 4:44 PM

It doesn’t change the fact that the vandals (the media) are far more likely to attack a woman or a minority in their infinite tolerance and wisdom.

Red Cloud on June 19, 2012 at 4:48 PM

Will or won’t she?

Schadenfreude on June 19, 2012 at 4:49 PM

And yes, Romney hates Palin. He hated her in 2008, he hired all of her detractors coming out of 2008, and his people still can’t keep from badmouthing her. If Romney wants us not to impute that to him, he’d better do something about it. Some of us pay attention and have very long memories.

Gary Johnson for President.

alwaysfiredup on June 19, 2012 at 4:45 PM

Wait, what? Romney hired Steve Schmidt and Nicolle Wallace? When?

rockmom on June 19, 2012 at 4:49 PM

Portman has tremendous political appeal in Ohio and won 82 of its 88 counties in his 20120 Senate race. If Portman can deliver Ohio, he is a worthwhile choice.

Pawlenty brings nothing, absolutely nothing to the table. Plus, he has publicly said that he does not want to be selected, presumably because he wants to run for Governor of Minnesota again in 2014 (against Dayton).

matthew8787 on June 19, 2012 at 4:49 PM

Really don’t care that much about VP. Also doesn’t matter if it is a man or a woman on the ticket either. Would like to see more conservative choices than Portman and Pawlenty, but again, I really don’t care either way. We are going to the dance with Romney, so I accept him now, warts and all.

ABO…that is all.

conservativemusician on June 19, 2012 at 4:50 PM

If anyone actually thought Pawlenty was ready to be President he wouldn’t have been the first one out of the race. Horrible choices.

AmeriCuda on June 19, 2012 at 4:50 PM

Scott Walker.

You want to witness a leftist meltdown that would shock the solar system, choose that guy.

Bishop on June 19, 2012 at 4:47 PM

You mix his two, with Mitt’s two, you get at least 3 tough ones.

Schadenfreude on June 19, 2012 at 4:50 PM

There was no Palin self-destruction in 2008. There was Palin destruction, sure. She didn’t do it to herself. I’ve seen any number of interviews by any number of politicoes in the past four years that are far worse than any she gave in 2008. Palin was a much better debater than Rick Perry, by far. Yet he’s not “destroyed”. Neither is she.

What? Of course she is. So is he. Have you seen Rick Perry’s polling numbers? He wouldn’t even be able to win reelection in Texas (TEXAS) at this point, due to his national debacle.

Neither person has any future whatsoever in electoral politics as a candidate. Pretending otherwise because you need to cling to a narrative where you personal heroes “always triumph over adversity” (even when a lot of that adversity is, frankly, self-inflicted — and in Palin’s case I’m talking more about her post-2008 career than the way she handled herself during the campaign) is something you have every right to do if it gives you emotional succor, but please don’t force the rest of us to enter into your reality-distortion field in order to flatter your feelings.

Esoteric on June 19, 2012 at 4:50 PM

It wasn’t a “self” destruction. What was the difference between Palin’s ill advised refusal to list what newspapers she reads and Obama referring to the Austrian language or talking about 10K people dying in a tornado? Media coverage. That’s it. That’s the only difference. Kataklysmic on June 19, 2012 at 4:45 PM

Exactly.

Guess how many newspapers I read each day? Llewellyn Moss’s mother-in-law has as many friends in El Paso as the number of newspapers I read. And I guaranty you I’m as well informed as any average Joe in the country.

If you just read half the links on Drudge or Hot Gas most days, you would be too. She was probably more afraid of the “gotcha” aspect of saying she reads e.g. Drudge’s links each day than anything else.

Akzed on June 19, 2012 at 4:50 PM

White/Whiter 2012

inthemiddle on June 19, 2012 at 4:11 PM

As is 72% of America, what is your point? Besides obvious stupidity.

hillsoftx on June 19, 2012 at 4:51 PM

Oh my, I just looked Mary Fallin up – what a beauty! The GOP appears to have a practically inexhaustible supply of conservative hotties.

She looks a bit like Marsha Blackburn – who is great and would be a good pick, too.

I’ll pass on Sheila Bair and Condi Rice, though. The first is the personified reason why our financial system is such a corrupt mess; the other, why our Middle East affairs are a disaster.

Archivarix on June 19, 2012 at 4:44 PM

Yep. I just saw Sheila Bair on an interview about the JP Morgan trading fiasco and she said, “Hedges aren’t supposed to make money.” I couldn’t believe she was really that stupid. Hedges are supposed to make or lose money based on how the hedged instrument does. What an idiot.

Condi Rice is just awful, awful, awful. She used to whip out that Road-Kill Map (which was broken by the Palis the first day of its existence) every time she said something about Israel and act as if it was a binding document. It used to make me sick. Condi also screwed up everything that was happening with Russia, and that was supposed to be her big expertise. She was terrible. She only got lucky that Colon Powell was far worse and then Shrillary even worse than that. SecState has been retardville for some time.

ThePrimordialOrderedPair on June 19, 2012 at 4:51 PM

Yeah, and most of the guys here wanted Palin on the ticket because she has a nice rack that they enjoy looking at. They didn’t know a thing about her.

rockmom on June 19, 2012 at 4:47 PM

I knew she had a strong fiscal record in Alaska.

I knew she had a reputation for rooting out corruption, whether it was Big Oil lobbyists or members of her own party.

I knew she was almost universally supported in her home state at the time.

I knew she represented a game change for McCain.

What I didn’t know was that McCain’s team would dick things up so royally, or that the media would be so outrageously outraged over being blindsided with a choice they’d never heard of and set out to destroy her.

Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice, shame on me.

Red Cloud on June 19, 2012 at 4:51 PM

Shira Toeplitz, of Roll Call, tweeted (https://twitter.com/#!/shiratoeplitz):

“Palin told me on 8/15/2008 that she wasn’t being vetted. OK, that turned out to be true.”
http://www.rollcall.com/news/-27427-1.html

FusDoRah on June 19, 2012 at 4:51 PM

[Esoteric on June 19, 2012 at 4:32 PM]

Nice, clear, concise comment, cutting through the horse race treatment.

Dusty on June 19, 2012 at 4:51 PM

Where were all you Palin-haters a few days ago when we had a Palin-QOTD? Hundreds of comments and not one negative towards Palin.

Buckshot Bill on June 19, 2012 at 4:52 PM

If you can’t given an answer about what you read or Supreme Court decisions that you disagree with, you do not deserve to be on the ticket. Period.

The Count on June 19, 2012 at 4:46 PM

a) She pushed back on the question of what she read. Pols do this all the time, not because they can’t answer, but because the framing is bull$hit. It was.

b) This was a dangerous question and she correctly spotted it as such, and avoided answering. The rest of the week would have been about how Palin, the snowbilly, thought herself smarter than the US Supreme Court.

These were perfectly reasonable responses to ridiculous questions. It is absurd that we all know the particulars of this one biased interview (still haven’t released the unedited version or transcript).

alwaysfiredup on June 19, 2012 at 4:53 PM

CorporatePiggy on June 19, 2012 at 4:27 PM

We mostly drive Hondas. Keep your head low…

Fallon on June 19, 2012 at 4:53 PM

Wait, what? Romney hired Steve Schmidt and Nicolle Wallace? When?

rockmom on June 19, 2012 at 4:49 PM

2008?..

the_nile on June 19, 2012 at 4:53 PM


hell, I just realized I’m talking myself into deciding he’s got to be the right pick. Seriously: if this election really does turn into Romney playing for the Rust Belt while Obama throws a Latino hail Mary, then Pawlenty really is the right choice.

Esoteric on June 19, 2012 at 4:45 PM

Pawlenty couldn’t even deliver Minnesota to Romney in the caucuses, and he had 6 months to do so. Romney was humiliated; only captured 17% of the caucus vote.

Pawlenty cannot carry water outside his back yard; he cannot even carry water in his OWN back yard.

And conservatives from coast to coast are livid that Pawlenty didn’t lift a finger to help Coleman when his victory was stolen from him by Franken.

matthew8787 on June 19, 2012 at 4:54 PM

Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice, shame on me.

Red Cloud on June 19, 2012 at 4:51 PM

You weren’t fooled, ever. What are you trying to say?

alwaysfiredup on June 19, 2012 at 4:54 PM

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