This is his best angle. (Cheryl Senter/AP)

TAMPA — “Free ponies for all Americans!” yells Vermin Supreme.

Vermin Supreme has been campaigning for more than two decades, and his list of issues is deep and varied — everything from time travel to mandatory toothbrushing to universal ponies to a weather dome. He is a fixture of the campaign trail, sporting multiple ties (one with a toothbrush and dentist’s chair), a pirate vest, a patriotic wind sock codpiece and what can only be described as an epic beard.

Now, with his trademark boot on his head, he is standing outside the security entrance to the perimeter of the Republican National Convention, proclaiming his message. “Is Mitt gonna save you from the zombies?” he asks. “Because I will!” In fact, clean, renewable energy from zombie treadmills is a major element of his platform.

After Ann Romney’s humanizing speech Tuesday night, I sought input from Mrs. Vermin Supreme, hoping to counteract her husband’s image as a warm relatable human, say with harsh anecdotes of his life as a zombie or robot. No such luck. “He appeals to everyone across the board,” she said. “The Ron Paul supporters love him. The cops love him.” And the Republicans, she hopes, will warm to him in time.

Why would she make a good first lady? “I really want to paint the White House, definitely rainbow,” she says. “We’ll prepare the white house for the zombie invasion. . . We’ll definitely have a weather dome.”

And of course, to move the mandatory toothbrushing agenda forward, there will be “flossing circles around the White House.”

Unlike Ann Romney, the Supremes would never eat pasta with tuna. (“Blegh,” Mrs. Supreme responds.)

Mr. Supreme, by contrast, keeps to his talking points, focusing on his pony agenda.

“This election cycle it’s all about the free ponies. And of course a pants-free America.”

What historical president would the Supreme administration most resemble?

“Well I imagine I’d probably go down like Nixon did.”

His legacy?

“A pony for every American.”

“Once every American has a pony then I can — by fiat, executive order or something like that — dismantle the federal government with a snap of my magic fingers.”

But the trouble with ponies is they eventually become horses.

Separate breed, Vermin says. “If you wanted to really trip me up you’d ask me, ‘Well, Vermin, according to the New York Times Magazine, there’s only 200,000 ponies or so in America.’ Well once again, I proposed a Manhattan project for ponies, you see. So that’s going to go a long way to it. In the meantime in the transition to pony-topia of course there will be conversion kits. Some people have accused me of wanting to saw the legs off the horse industry, and, well, that’s true, that’s part of the conversion, is sawing the legs off the horses to make ponies, but soon there will be provided proper ponies for everyone.

“And once again there has been some speculation that, well, you might not even see your pony, maybe they’ll be held in some sort of federal pony reserve.”

Does Supreme oppose the Federal Pony Reserve?

“I’m working on it. I also say that under a Supreme presidency any organization that has ‘Federal’ in its title needs to be run by the federal government. You know federal express, federal reserve, otherwise it’s false advertising.”

“I think the important thing to understand about the free pony program is, of course, it is an absolutely free pony program, uh, there may be some incidental costs involved with pony social security or universal pony health care or the haystamp program so ponies won’t starve in the streets. And of course once we have universal pony ownership, then we have equity, we have universal pony equity, and of course once we have universal equity on ponies we can borrow against it and then we can create a pony-based debt and once we create a pony-based debt we can bring the bankers in to create pony credit default swaps and then we're going to have a HUGE pony bubble in the economy and we all know that bubbles are great in the economy at that time.”

If he had to make one gaffe, what would it be?

“I’m not giving anybody no ponies never. Americans are stupid.”

And with that, he darts off, boot securely planted on head. This is a man who knows what America needs.