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UW Election Eye 2012

Campaign 2012 through the eyes of UW faculty and students

Topic: Condi

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August 2, 2012 at 7:09 AM

Why Mitt Romney should select Condoleezza Rice as his VP

Mitt Romney turns up the heat on his VP running mate choice by announcing a new mobile app for the occasion. Should he pick Condoleezza Rice?

SEATTLE — We are mired in election season doldrums, that seemingly endless period of the election cycle where it feels as if we are drowning in talk, talk, talk. With the Republican Party national convention not until the end of this month, followed by the Democratic Party gathering in early September, speculation has become a spectator sport.

Mitt Romney

Mitt Romney (Photo by Gage Skidmore/Wikipedia)

Next up? Another round of “Name that Vice President!”

Taking a page from President Barack Obama’s 2008 campaign, Mitt Romney’s campaign on Tuesday released Mitt’s VP, a smartphone app that will tell you his choice for running mate–just as soon as Romney decides to make that decision public. To his campaign’s credit, Romney didn’t misspell America this time.

With the Romney campaign maintaining radio silence on the VP pick, some pundits have suggested Rob Portman (U.S. Senator, Ohio) should have the number two slot. Others have pitched Tim Pawlenty (former governor of Minnesota) or Marco Rubio (U.S. Senator, Florida). Bobby Jindal (governor of Lousiana) has also been mentioned as a contender.

And then there is Condoleezza Rice. How about her?

According to Public Policy Polling (PPP), a left-leaning public opinion survey firm, having Rice on the ticket could have a big impact in Michigan (16 electoral votes) and Pennsylvania (20 electoral votes) because she’s viewed favorably by Democrats in both states. In 2008, Obama took 57.4% of the Michigan vote and 54.7% of the Pennsylvania vote. Both are critical swing states in 2012.

This bi-partisan support makes Rice, 57, a valuable political figure if Romney decides he wants to attract Independents or Democrats. In Pennsylvania Rice’s favorability rating is 60% (vs. 27% unfavorable); in Michigan it is 56% (vs. 28%). These numbers are significant, even after accounting for polling margin of error (Pennsylvania is +/-3.6% and Michigan is +/-4.1%).

If the PPP data are solid, Rice should be his number one pick.

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Comments | More in National | Topics: Condi, Condoleezza Rice, Mitt Romney


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