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The big news this week will be Donald Trump’s choice for vice president. He has said that he would pick someone a week before the convention. This is the week before the convention, so the speculation is flying. And the names are going up and down.

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Just a few weeks ago, gamblers were putting most of their money on Chris Christie. More recently, Newt Gingrich was the top choice. But suddenly, last week, Mike Pence rose to the top, largely on the news that Trump would be campaigning with Pence in Indiana this week.

In fact, Pence is now favored by nearly half of all gamblers, with a 45.5% chance to win, and Gingrich has dropped to 25.5%. What that means is that if you bet a buck on Pence, you’ll get two bucks back if he is picked, and if you bet a buck on Gingrich, you’ll get four bucks back now.

What are people thinking? Pence is in a tough re-election campaign, and he can’t run for both governor of Indiana and vice president. If his race was tough before, Republicans will have an even harder time without him. He narrowly beat Democrat John Gregg in 2012, so Gregg already has name recognition and organization.

So maybe Pence would like to get out of that race. But what would Trump get out of it? Indiana has voted for the Republican candidate nine out of the last ten elections. Yes, Indiana went for Obama in 2008, but went back to the Republicans in 2012. In fact, Indiana has voted Republican 30 times since the party was established. Democrats won only 8, including for FDR twice, and against Goldwater in 2012.

Meanwhile, the Indiana senate seat is now up for grabs. This year was supposed to be easy for the GOP. The Democratic candidate, Baron Hill, had raised less than a million dollars for the campaign. The state had been written off. Then, suddenly, former Dem Senator Evan Bayh said he’d run, and Hill pulled out. Bayh is also a former governor, is still popular, but lost his senate seat in the Tea Party wave of 2010. His full name is Birch Evans Bahy III, son of famous senator Birch Bahy (II). He also has $3.9 million in the bank from his last campaign.

Back to the GOP ticket, a lot of people still want Newt Gingrich. Newt is better known, is a skilled debater, is respected by both Republican establishment and the Tea Party, and is famous for pushing “The Contract With America” in 1994. He brings solid knowledge of Congress, being former Speaker of the House, and could help Trump push through his program. Karl Rove says Newt would “kill or die” for the position.

“I had to deal with Newt when I was at the White House at a lower level, and he clearly would love to be a player inside any Republican administration,” Rove, a deputy chief of staff and senior advisor to former President George W. Bush, told Fox News’ “America’s Newsroom” program.

“The vice president has a regular weekly lunch with the president and sits in on main policy issues and is able to opine.”

Gingrich has been a fan of Trump’s for a long time, said Rove, and is an “insider who knows how Congress works,” pointing out that Trump has commented that in “‘one way, shape, or form, Newt Gingrich is going to be part of my administration.'”

More recently, there has been speculation that Trump would pick a military man (the way Ross Perot did).

Presumptive Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump is giving consideration to retired Lieutenant General Michael Flynn as a potential vice presidential running mate, a Republican source familiar with the process said on Saturday. . .

The thinking is that Flynn, who has been a foreign policy adviser to Trump, would be able to help Trump in the area of national security at a time of challenges abroad like the threat from Islamic State militants.

Trouble is, Flynn is very pro-choice and is very pro-gay rights. . .and the voice from the back of the room says, “next!”

But who does Trump want? Actually, he thinks the VP candidate won’t make a difference.

As Donald Trump narrows down his list of potential running mates, the presumptive Republican nominee would not appear to be buying into the notion that whoever he chooses will matter all that much.

“History has said nobody ever helps,” Trump told The Washington Post’s Chris Cillizza on Monday, pointing to John F. Kennedy’s selection of Lyndon B. Johnson in 1960 as the last choice that made a difference. “I’ve never seen anybody that’s helped.”

But after saying that, he said he wanted someone from the establishment.

As Donald Trump narrows down his list of potential running mates, the presumptive Republican nominee would not appear to be buying into the notion that whoever he chooses will matter all that much.

“History has said nobody ever helps,” Trump told The Washington Post’s Chris Cillizza on Monday, pointing to John F. Kennedy’s selection of Lyndon B. Johnson in 1960 as the last choice that made a difference. “I’ve never seen anybody that’s helped.”

Well, if it doesn’t matter, why not let the convention decide? That hasn’t happened since Estes Kefauver beat JFK for the Democratic vice presidential in 1956. (I remember it. It was a real fight.) Why not get all the extra drama of a floor fight for veep? It’s one of the things that could make his convention something you just can’t turn away from.

Here’s a dramatic video of the 1956 Dem convention, showing Kennedy getting close to winning, but an unexpected “bandwagon effect” suddenly makes Kefauver the convention’s choice.

Actually, the anti-Trump people are planning to fight for their own veep choice.

Anti-Trump delegates are preparing a rules change proposal that would chart a path for delegates to choose their own vice presidential nominee at the Republican National Convention, instead of voting for Donald Trump’s choice.

A draft proposal obtained by BuzzFeed News outlines several changes to Rule 40 that would make it easier for delegates to reject whomever Trump picks as his running mate and present their own alternative. BuzzFeed News has learned that it will be presented at the Rules Committee meeting next week in Cleveland ahead of the convention.

If the Anti-Trump people get their way, Trump may be saddled with someone who disagrees with him. But it wouldn’t be the first time. In 1952, Dwight Eisenhower wanted to dump Richard Nixon from the GOP ticket (as George McGovern later did), because there were rumors that Nixon had taken bribes. Nixon only saved himself by making the famous “Checkers Speech,” in which he said he did get their dog, Checkers, as a gift, but would not give him up. Nothing like a kid or puppy to distract the media from a story.

After eight years, Ike’s opinion of Nixon didn’t change. At a press conference during the 1960 campaign, the press gave him an opportunity to build up Nixon—by saying he was an important part of the administration. Ike did not help Nixon at all.

Q. Sarah McClendon, El Paso Times: Mr. President, will you tell us some of the big decisions that Mr. Nixon has participated in since you have been in the White House and he, as Vice President, has been helping you?

THE PRESIDENT. Well, Mrs. McClendon, no one participates in the decisions. . .

Q. Charles H. Mohr, Time Magazine: Mr. President, one of your answers to a previous question raises this question: one of the issues in this campaign is seeming to turn on the question of Mr. Nixon’s experience, and the Republicans to some extent almost want to claim that he has had a great deal of practice at being President. . .

THE PRESIDENT. Well, it seems to me that there is some confusion here–haziness–that possibly needs a lot of clarification. I said he was not a part of decision-making. . .

Q. Mr. Mohr: We understand that the power of decision is entirely yours, Mr. President. I just wondered if you could give us an example of a major idea of his that you had adopted in that role, as the decider and final–

THE PRESIDENT. If you give me a week, I might think of one. I don’t remember.

After that election, it’s no secret that Kennedy gave Lyndon Johnson little respect, as well. Johnson helped JFK win Texas, but LBJ was disliked by JFK, and was hated by Robert Kennedy. Their relationship was so cold that there were later rumors that LBJ had JFK killed.

Et tu, Brute?

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