Mitch Daniels: Well, Vice President might not be so bad...

When the endless question of, “who are you backing in the primary” comes up, I’ve been one of those Eeyore types who sigh and think of the people who either dropped out too soon, (thanks, T-Paw!) or never threw their hat in the ring at all. Among the latter, one name seems to keep cropping up which may be making the news again soon. Brandon Kiser points us to a report out of Indiana involving a name we heard quite often last spring.

Occupants of the governor’s office always have a limited engagement. 2012 will be the last year that Mitch Daniels will occupy room 206 in the Statehouse. When asked if he will approach it differently, he says, “Gonna try not to. Gonna use every single day.”

While he concentrates on the task at hand there will be talk about what comes next. He’s ruled out a run for President but what about Vice President? Is that out of the question? “I don’t know,” the governor answers. “I’ve always felt that no citizen should say in advance if asked to serve, I won’t.”

As Brandon points out, Daniels brings a lot of portables to any such job application. A two term, highly successful governor presiding over solid jobs growth in his state, bipartisan popularity among voters and a rock solid record on addressing national budget and debt questions is bound to be attractive.

The downside? It would be a pick that flies in the face of the “conventional wisdom” which indicates that the eventual nominee (with Bachmann out of the race) is going to be a stereotypical, GOP ROWG. (Rich Old White Guy.) This would tend to support the theory that the nominee will be either a woman or somebody with more appeal to minority voters. (You can insert the names of Rubio, Palin, Susana Martinez and a host of others there.) There’s also the geography question to be considered, as in what swing states might Mitch bring to the table that others wouldn’t.

But if this really is the jobs jobs jobs election and focuses on the economy, Daniels is still a very solid offering. Is his wife OK with it? There were some unpleasant rumors running around while Daniels was originally considering a bid which hinted that family considerations would be an issue. But if he’s not at the top of the ticket, that may be greatly muted.

Of course, the final possibility is that Mitch’s answer in the interview was nothing more than it seemed. He may not even be interested in the position but wasn’t going to be rude enough to just say no to the idea that the next leader of the free world would call on him to serve. If he really doesn’t want to do it, that could easily be sorted out behind closed doors once the nomination is settled and the offer would never be made.

But for those who really wanted him to run originally… hope springs eternal, eh?