Will Mitt Romney announce his vice presidential choice this week?
The New York Times is reporting that the Romney campaign has chosen their pick for Vice President - and could announce their candidate as early as this week in an effort to move the conversation from Romney's lies about his role in Bain Capital. The newspaper handicaps Tim Pawlenty as Romney's pick (a choice I've been touting as a foregone conclusion since he dropped out of the race following a poor showing in the Iowa straw poll) with Ohio Senator Rob Portman coming in second place.
After a short-lived presidential bid of his own last year, Mr. Pawlenty is again being considered for the Republican ticket. His fate is in the hands of Mr. Romney, a rival-turned-friend, who is on the cusp of announcing his vice-presidential selection. Mr. Romney has reached a decision, his friends believe, and he may disclose it as soon as this week.
He has emerged as one of the most energetic cheerleaders and forceful defenders of Mr. Romney, firing back against Republican skeptics and Democratic critics alike. All but forgotten are the days when Mr. Pawlenty coined the troublemaking term "Obamneycare," suggesting that few differences existed between the health care plans of Mr. Romney and Mr. Obama.
Now, as the president and his re-election campaign are relentlessly hammering away at Mr. Romney's wealth and business background, some admirers of Mr. Pawlenty believe that he could help ease the criticism that the Republican ticket does not appeal to working-class voters.
"An appealing counterbalance to Romney being a son of a wealthy man and going to elite schools is Pawlenty being the son of a truck driver who went to the University of Minnesota," said Ray Washburne, a Dallas businessman who began helping Mr. Romney's campaign after Mr. Pawlenty left the race. "He's not elite in any sense of the word."
So who do you think Romney is going to pick? I'm sticking with Pawlenty.
(Republican Veepstakes graphic via DonkeyHotey)