Readers had a plethora of suggestions for a dark horse vice presidential pick for Mitt Romney. Names mentioned included Sens. Jon Kyl (R-Ariz.), Mike Crapo (R-Idaho), and Bob Corker (R-Tenn.), as well as former secretary of state Condi Rice, Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal and former Arkansas governor Mike Huckabee. But the person, interestingly, whom readers named most frequently was Puerto Rican Gov. Luis Fortuno.
Statist Quo writes:
My favorite dark horse, credible and surprise VP? Governor Luis Fortuno of Puerto Rico. Popular executive. 2nd Republican Governor since 1949, first since 1969. Proponent of free markets and smaller government. Chairman of the Southern Governor’s Association. Catholic and lawyer who’s an alum of University of Virginia and Georgetown. More executive experience than [Sen. Marco] Rubio. No taint of Beltway group Think. Main Stream Media would hate him for not having a clue that he would be nominated. Romney would beat the clueless Dems at the “game” they invented: identity politics. Independents would love the boldness of the move and the base would love Fortuno’s conservatism. Democrats would be stumped they could not Palin-ize a Latino, without alienating a significant part of their own base. Romney would gain the high ground by seeking the best available executive, without being seen as pandering. Rule of thumb: the bigger the Romney lead in the summer, the bolder his VP choice will become. Fortuno could be a Palin like bombshell, but with political staying power through to and past November.
That is a fine suggestion. Not mentioned by the commenters (so she is a true dark horse) is Sen. Kelly Ayotte (R-N.H.). She is smart, energetic, articulate and informed on a wide range of issues, especially national security matters (she has assumed a prominent role on the Senate Armed Services Committee) and has some, but not too much, D.C experience. She also served as New Hampshire’s attorney general. And, yes, she’s a woman from a swing state.