VP Speculation Reaches Fever Pitch

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Paul Ryan has become the GOP’s go-to-guy on the federal budget, offering one of the few realistic visions for whittling down America’s massive debt. He is cool under fire, beloved by the Tea Party, and hails from Wisconsin, another swing state. He is also charismatic, which may explain why a poll taken by the left-leaning Public Policy Polling shows that of nearly three dozen potential VP candidates tested in 15 states since mid-May, “none helps Romney improve his position better in the potential running mate’s home state than Ryan in Wisconsin,” according to the Daily Caller. Of the three frontrunners, he is by far the “boldest” potentially game-changing pick Romney could make.

The principle knock on Ryan is that his signature budget plan, which includes reforms to Medicare, is an attack-dog whistle to Democrats. As such, they would undoubtedly reprise the “granny over the cliff” ads they used to kill his budget proposals last year. He is also young, and decided on his own not to run for the top slot this time around, making the idea that he could assume the presidency right away problematic. And the same charisma that helps him may also be a negative, as it would be relatively easy for him to outshine Romney.

Two more candidates merit scrutiny. One is Louisiana Governor Bobby Jindal. Jindal is a solid conservative, and he would be the first Indian-American on a national ticket. He is also charismatic, and has implemented much-needed education reform in his home state. Yet Louisiana’s budget remains on shaky ground, despite his efforts to reform it. Furthermore, he has seemingly taken himself out of the race, telling a gathering of conservatives in Florida last weekend that Romney would send a “powerful message” regarding budgetary issues if he nominated Ryan.

New Jersey Governor Chris Christie is one of the true stars in a Republican party where stars are in short supply. His take-no-prisoners attitude with the media and his matter-of-fact way of speaking energizes many conservatives. Thus, he would stand in stark contrast to Romney’s blandness. Yet like Ryan, Christie also took a pass on running for president saying he wasn’t ready, and the same brashness that endears him to many could prove to be a liability in a tight race with a mainstream media looking to magnify any mistake on the Republican side of the ledger. Furthermore, as noted here and here, Christie has a blind spot regarding Islamic radicalism.

Other candidates seemingly out of the race include Florida Senator Marco Rubio, whose charisma, Latino background, and Florida swing state potential may be offset by his lack of experience; General David Petraeus, whose national security credentials are offset by his stated lack of political ambition; and Condoleeza Rice whose popularity, charisma, experience, along with her race and gender, may be offset by her tenure in the Bush administration. Moreover, Rice has also said she’s not interested in the job.

All of the people here, to varying degrees represent viable choices for the VP slot. If there is something that would pull the Romney camp in one direction or the other, it may boil down to a few overall considerations. Does Romney believe he needs an injection of charisma into his campaign or not? Would he prefer someone better suited to help him win the election, or someone more suited to the duties of the office once the election is won? Does he embrace Tea Party conservatism, or is he more comfortable with the GOP establishment?

Right now the campaign is getting a lot of mileage out of the process itself. Ironically, that says something as well: if excitement must be generated by speculation over a vice presidential candidate, what does that say about the presidential candidate? If genuine buzz is to be generated between now and November, it is Mr. Romney himself who must eventually rise to the occasion.

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  • WildJew

    Romney needs a pick who will energize the conservative base. Romney needs to pick someone who is (unlike himself) a solid conservative.

    • http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nLNn2YflwNs Roger

      I don't talk to anyone who looks forward to Romney's choice. They know it will be someone that the conservatives have to tolerate in order to boot Obama.

    • Goemon

      Ya. If he doesn’t pick a true believer in the constitution then I surely wont be voting this election.

  • Chezwick

    Rubio doesn't want the job….but if he could be prevailed upon, he would be the optimum choice. He could help deliver Florida, he could pull in Hispanic votes around the country, he's intelligent and articulate, a good family man, and has appeal to both moderates and conservatives alike.

    • WildJew

      I have a neighbor who does not trust Rubio. Illegal immigration is her issue and she thinks Rubio wants to give illegals amnesty. Because immigration is not my priority issue, I gave Rubio the benefit of the doubt, that is, until he joined John McCain condemning Michele Bachmann and her Congressional colleagues because she / they are asking for an investigation of Muslim Brotherhood influence at the highest levels of government.

      • Chezwick

        Rubio's not perfect, but defeating Obama is priority ONE. Rubio would give us the best chance to do so. Unfortunately, he doesn't appear to want the job.

  • Steve Chavez

    Of the three listed, it MUST be Paul Ryan. The man has been visible and is a known fighter now that he and Romney MUST take off the Mittens and put on BRASS KNUCKLES to fight "OBAMA'S A HOOD!"


    An interesting poll was taken and a larger percentage of 2008 Obama voters WERE SWITCHING FOR ROMNEY than McCain voters switching for Obama. A PUSH NEEDS to be made to convince others to SWITCH! With those switching, 2008 Obama voters not as interested and will stay home, too lazy now that they are hooked on his welfare, and other factors, a few percentage points of those SWITCHING, ON TOP OF TEA PARTY AND REPUBLICAN EXCITEMENT LIKE IN THE HISTORICAL 2010 ELECTION, the win could be for ROMNEY-RYAN.

    I also just love that the Democrats immediately ATTACKED PAUL RYAN'S BUDGET PLAN when they have never proposed one. WHAT'S THE DEMOCRAT GAME PLAN? Don't propose anything so nothing can be criticized.

    PART TWO: "25 REASONS: Time for a SWITCH." A take on Obama's slogan, which is all he's good at coming up with, and a way to get Democrats who have seen their party taken over as their moderate positions are now more like the Republicans who have a wide variety of positions in their political spectrum. "From Bachmann to Ron Paul." Republicans need to be proud of such wide views.

    • Steve Chavez

      Hispanics, Blacks, and minorities are born Democrats just like most Hispanics are born Catholics who are a very conservative people. Now the Democrats are the leading anti-every religion force as they excuse and legitimize every type of immorality which is opposite Catholic values. Democrats take their vote for granted and any one of these groups that defects to the Republicans is ridiculed and called “Oreo’s, Uncle Tom’s” and all types of names making those people stay in the Republican closet. Now that Obama, Hollywood, and the Democrats are coming out of the numerous closets they were hiding in, it is time for Closet Republicans and Moderate Democrats to come out too. HOW? HERE IT IS!!!

      1. If you think your Party has been taken over by Far-Left Progressives, and beyond, then it’s TIME FOR A SWITCH! (Reagan did!)
      2. If your moderate views are not being heard by those who have closed their ears, but they're still wanting you to open your wallets, then it’s TIME FOR A SWITCH!
      3. If you were fooled and tricked by empty promises, fancy language, and catchy slogans repeated so many times that you actually believed them, then it’s TIME FOR A SWITCH!
      4. If all the “Change” you have left in your pockets are Abe Lincolns, then it’s TIME FOR A SWITCH!
      5. If your vote is taken for granted because of your race and/or gender, then it’s TIME FOR A SWITCH!
      6. If you think America is being forced, slowly but surely and in the dark of night, into the proven failure of Socialism/Communism, then it’s TIME FOR A SWITCH!
      7. If you're afraid of losing your 2nd Amendment right to protect your home, family, and yourself, then it’s TIME FOR A SWITCH!
      8. If you're tired of those who normalize and moralize immorality, then it's TIME FOR A SWITCH!
      9. If you are too feminine for feminists, then it’s TIME FOR A SWITCH!
      10. If you're tired of being taxed here, taxed there, taxed everywhere, then it’s TIME FOR A SWITCH!
      11. If your centuries old Constitution is called “outdated,” as its freedoms are now being used to overthrow it by the decades old Rules for Radicals and the Communist Manifesto, and if Washington is thrown under the bus for Alinsky and Marx, then it’s TIME FOR A SWITCH!
      12. If you’re tired of our soldiers getting spit on, even as those very soldiers put their lives on the line in order to protect our right to spit on them, then it's TIME FOR A SWITCH!
      13. If you’re tired of going in the Red filling up your car, blackmailed by the oil dictators who hate us, and by hypocrites who fill up their gas tanks to drive, or to fly in their private jet, to a Green protest against oil and gas, and you want to “Drill Here, Drill Now” instead of imposing moratoriums, then it’s TIME FOR A SWITCH!
      14. If you feel your race is continuously, and purposefully, kept in a perpetual cycle of poverty and government dependability, as they are addicting you to themselves therefore requiring you to vote for them in order to get your fix, then it’s TIME FOR A SWITCH!
      15. If you feel jobs are being lost because of the anti-Capitalist “Workers of the World Unite” and if you are passed over for a job, raise, or promotion due to your political beliefs, then it’s TIME FOR A SWITCH!
      16. If your moderate and traditional moral and family values are now the extreme, then it’s TIME FOR A SWITCH!
      17. If they say and think “The World First” instead of “Country First,” then it’s TIME FOR A SWITCH!
      18. If you’re tired of “Blame America and Apology Tours,” then it’s TIME FOR A SWITCH!
      19. If you’re tired of Leftist indoctrination and brainwashing in our schools, then it’s TIME FOR A SWITCH!
      20. If you’re tired of the P.C. Police handcuffing your rights, your way of life, your thoughts and words, then it’s TIME FOR A SWITCH!
      21. If you’re tired of being ridiculed for trying to be, or being, successful, then it’s TIME FOR A SWITCH!
      22. If you’re tired of feeling guilty for the car you drive, the toys you own, the home you live in, the food you eat, and the amount of money you make, then it’s TIME FOR A SWITCH!
      23. If you want a secure border and all immigration laws, that are on the books now, to be enforced, then it's TIME FOR A SWITCH!
      24. If you’re tired of “Do as I say, not as I do,“ hypocrites controlling your life, then it’s TIME FOR A SWITCH!
      25. If you’re afraid and ridiculed for believing in, and for writing or saying “God” or “Christmas,” then it’s TIME FOR A SWITCH!


    • WilliamJamesWard

      Romney must be tuned into your thinking Steve, cudos………………..William

  • Guy Green

    The logic that a particular candidate will be a "dog whistle" for Leftist attack is totally empty. BEING ALIVE is enough for any conservative to qualify for Leftist attack. Romney MUST pick a candidate who is willing to FIGHT, and begin an all-out attack mode himself. ALL Republicans are already homophobes, Islamophobes, bigots, McCarthyites, birthers, racists, child eaters and religious zealots clinging to ancient superstitions like The Constitution and God. When Reagan got the nomination to run against Pat Brown in California, the establishment told him to move to the center. He told them to pound sand and won huge by selling conservative principles. When Peter Robinson wrote the great line, "Mr. Gorbachev, tear down this wall!" the establishment told him to take it out of the speech at the Brandenburg Gate. The rest is history. The Republican establishment has LOST the war with political correctness and Alinskyite tactics. Romney will LOSE if he listens to the establishment and ignores the Tea Party that is winning primaries across the country. Bring on Allen West or Andy McCarthy or Bobby Jindal. ANYBODY with more backbone than Mitt has shown thus far. The election is, once again, the evil of two lessers. Our motto must be: "Honey, I'll paint the living room. Just as soon as I get the rattlesnake off the sofa!" If Romney is lucky enough to win, we must make absolutely certain he does not "reach out to the center." The Democrats are a criminal enterprise. You don't compromise with that. You DEFEAT that. Totally and finally. As Dutch put it: "We win. They lose." It's as simple as that.

  • BLJ

    Let's face it anyone Romney chooses will be attacked by the Dems and their MSM lackeys. Part of the game and to be honest who really cares? The future of this Republic is on the line and Comrade O has to go (nice slogan huh?).

    I would like to see Rubio. . I think Ryan is needed in Congress. Petreaus would be a curve ball, but a person really has to want to get in the political arena and I am not sure he does.

  • patroitwork

    Steve Chavez: if your post isn't the best one I've ever read, it is as good as the best.

  • Bright Knight

    At least Chris Christie (or how I call him: Islam Islamie) is not longer on top of the list, because if Romney would pick this GOP-version of Huma Abedin (with Moochelles butt) as his VP, we would would just replace one Islamic Terror Organisation with direct access to the White house by another: Obama is friend of the Muslim Brotherhood, Christie/Islamie has very close ties to Hamas (which is basically not such a big change, because the MB are the mother organization of the Hamas). Whether Christie is too stupid to know about Islam or ignorant or he supports the Islamic agenda, he is not fit for a position in the administration because he's not ready, willing and/or able to defend our country against one of the two major threats: Islamism (the other is Socialism).

  • WilliamJamesWard

    "Huckabee"………bring in the Christian vote, appeal to those who would not vote otherwise. There
    are still millions who seem to think that the Nation deserves to go to hell for electing Obama
    and those who voted for him deserve the catastrophy that has been unfolding. Huckabee can tie
    up all loose ends and is intelligent and capable. Rubio attacked Bachman with Allahu Akbar McCain,
    that shows stupidity and ineptness and worse RHINO blood…………………..William
    However his is picking Paul Ryan, so it goes, Obama must be defeated to save the Nation.

  • Trueblue

    We shouldn't be speculating on Romney's VP choice. We should instead be working to persuade Romney to drop out of the race because the only reason he is the presumptive nominee is because the conservative vote in the Republican primaries was split between Santorum, Bachmann, Gingrich, etc. (That was probably no accident. The party's moderates know that splitting the conservative vote is the best way for their moderate to win.) If Romney is president, that's going to be a disaster (though probably somewhat less of a disaster than Obama). We don't need a flip-flopping, morally challenged president. Under Romney's watch, for examples, and despite what he says (which you can take with a grain of salt), I bet we'll see not only homosexual marriage but polygamous marriage. Recall that the strange Mormon religion has a history of accepting polygamy and right now some polygamists are in court using the same silly arguments homosexuals use to try to win "polygamous rights." Bottom line, let's not be manipulated again (and again and again) into supporting a wishy-washy moderate. Enough is enough. When you add up the votes that went to conservatives in the primaries and compared that total to Romney's votes, conservatives won the day. Let's act like winners not losers. Let's take charge.

  • Asher

    Romney has picked a Grassroots Conservative…Paul Ryan, a serious candidate to fix a serious problem…the out of control spending, and lack of a fiscally responsible budget by the Obama administration is rendering the US on the verge of collapse…all on purpose so that we become insignificant and a 3rd world country. Ryan is very popular with people his own age, and has an iron will to balance the budget..We need strength and leadership. Ryan is a big military and defense guy too, he knows our enemies smell Blood in the Water and weakness!


    I predict Romney will pick Paul Ryan.

  • poetcomic1

    ELECT ROMNEY AND RYAN AND GET RID OF ROMNEY and just maybe…we can make it.