If history's any indicator, we've got some time before Romney's veep announcement; Update: Surprise frontrunner emerges, says Drudge

With the usual summer-vacation news slowdown and pre-full-blast campaign season excitement, we’re at the usual moment in the election cycle for rampant veep speculation. Most recently, there have been rumors as to whether Team Romney’s advisers are wondering if it mightn’t be beneficial for Mitt to announce his intentions sooner rather than later given the current state of play. They’re still insisting, however, that they’ve made no decisions, and Romney played it totally coy on Neil Cavuto’s show on Wednesday afternoon.

Traditionally speaking, we’ve got a ways to go before Mitt Romney will let us know of his final decision. Barring the exception of John Edwards in 2004, candidates of recent history usually wait until right around their respective conventions before dropping the bomb:


As Phil Klein points out, it’s probably smart for Mitt Romney to keep his options open for as long as possible — it gives him wiggle room to pick the most appealing candidate in case of some game-changing national event and will allow him to work off of the greatest amount of information. We’ve still got seven weeks before the Republican National Convention in Tampa, and given that there doesn’t seem to be any one obvious contender in the veepstakes, I think we’ve got at least a little while to wait yet.

Update (Allahpundit): As I write this, Drudge has the fire-engine red font out for this banner headline:


Really? Mr. Cautious, who’s leaning towards Rob Portman and Tim Pawlenty because they’re bland, is suddenly ready to roll the dice on a dark horse? Only two possibilities. One: He’s alarmed that he’s not moving in the polls and now thinks, a la McCain, that he has to make waves with his VP pick to shake things up. Two: This is a load of nonsense, fed to Drudge in order to steer the media away from covering the left’s dumb Bain attacks.

Assuming the answer lies behind door number one, though, I have but two words: Romney/Huckabee?

Update (Allahpundit): Seriously, though, if this is a legit scoop, I have to assume that he’s referring to Ryan or Jindal. Rubio just wouldn’t be much of a “surprise.”

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