DOES THIS MEAN ROMNEY IS PICKING CHRISTIE?
If this Reuters story is accurate, I think Rob Portman and Marco Rubio and all the other non-New Jersey Romney short-listers will be watching history pass them by:
Romney could pick VP early, and cash in often
... This year, there is at least a small chance that Republican Mitt Romney might break with tradition and name his vice presidential choice earlier in the summer, according to people advising the campaign.
... Outside advisers to the Romney campaign, who spoke on condition of anonymity, say he has the option of announcing his choice well before the Republican convention where Romney will be nominated, in Tampa in late August.
... the Romney team has discussed whether to announce the pick a few weeks earlier to generate buzz for his campaign during August and help raise campaign funds....
..."You double your ability to campaign, you double your ability to raise money," said one Republican official. "You get a longer media halo," said another....
"Help raise campaign funds"? "Double your ability to raise money"? That points to just one person on the short list, and it ain't Nikki Haley or Bobby Jindal. From The New York Times, September 26, 2011:
... Meet the Draft Christie committee, a small but influential group of Republican-leaning donors and activists, many based in New York, united by a shared desire to see Gov. Chris Christie of New Jersey run for president.
There is Kenneth G. Langone, the billionaire Home Depot founder who is perhaps Mr. Christie's most fervent booster; Paul E. Singer, the publicity-shy hedge fund magnate and Republican activist who is among the most-sought-after Republican donors in the country; and David H. Koch, the industrialist, Tea Party benefactor and, according to Forbes, the richest man in New York.
Charles R. Schwab, the personal investment guru, is also among those who have shown interest in seeing a Christie presidential bid, according to published reports and people familiar with the discussions, as is the financier Stanley F. Druckenmiller. So are the hedge fund managers David Tepper and Daniel S. Loeb, a onetime supporter of President Obama....
We've had so many different stories about Romney's VP thinking that I'm not prepared to believe this is the real answer any more than I'm prepared to believe it's definitely going to be Portman or Pawlenty or Jeb, based on some other rumor. In fact, I was thinking that the recent boastful aggression of the Romney campaign suggested that Romney wants to be Christie rather than run with him -- I think he envies Christie's ability to cut loose and has been trying to emulate it. But I suppose that doesn't preclude a run with the guy -- a Christie-Christie ticket, in effect. We'll see.