The “VeepStakes” competition is in full swing and the stories coming out regarding Romney’s selection process and alleged finalization of a choice are dropping everyday. The latest comes from Reuters claiming that Romney has narrowed the list down to three possible names.

Report from Reuters:

Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney appears to be in the final stages of deciding who to pick as his vice presidential running mate, with speculation growing that he has narrowed his choice down to a short-list of three.

Ohio Senator Rob Portman, former Minnesota Governor Tim Pawlenty and Louisiana Governor Bobby Jindal all offer various strengths to Romney should he decide to pick one of them to join his battle to unseat President Barack Obama and his vice president, Joe Biden, in the November 6 election.

Many Republicans believe Romney will break from tradition and announce his choice well before the party’s convention in Tampa in late August that will formally nominate Romney as the Republican candidate.

Campaign officials were loathe to discuss the selection process or the short list but made clear that Romney, the former Massachusetts governor, had yet to make up his mind.

“No decision has been made. An announcement could happen any time between now and the convention, but it will only happen after a decision has been made and no decision has been made,” said Romney campaign senior adviser Eric Fehrnstrom.

This story claims the list is down to Pawlenty, Portman or Jindal. That, of course, omits Marco Rubio, a favorite among the party’s conservative base and winner of most polls asking who Romney should choose. I have a feeling the list is probably smaller than those three mentioned and could include names not even mentioned in this article. Then again maybe I’m wrong since only the campaign truly knows who is seriously being considered.

The name dropping and speculation will continue for a few weeks I’d gather unless the campaign perceives the need to shake up the news cycle between now and the convention in going public with a VP choice. Otherwise it is constant free publicity to keep the process going, keep the media guessing and keep eager Republican voters on the edge of their seats up to the convention.


  1. Argh! Neither Rubio (supposedly now out of consideration) nor Jindal (reportedly on the very short list) are constitutionally qualified to hold the office. When will these GOP-establishment idiots get it into their heads that the sames rules apply to Republicans as apply to Obama. Either they are stupid, or they think we are. Either way, it makes me embarrassed to be a Republican.

    • Out of curiosity, what, in your opinion, specifically disqualifies each potential pick (Jindal or Rubio) from the VP slot? Is it because their parents were not born here?

      • Nate, it isn’t that their parents weren’t born here. It has to do with whether their parents were US citizens at the time the child (Marco Rubio or Bobby Jindal) were born. In those cases, as in Obama’s case, we know the answer and it is that all 3 had at least one non-citizen parent at the time of their birth. This was also Chester Arthur’s problem, but it was not known until recently because Chester lied about his father’s immigration and naturalization dates and then burned almost all of his personal papers when he left the White House. Interestingly, Arthur’s actual legitimacy issue was obscured by a possible red herring of his own birth place.

        Mitt Romney appears to be ok in this regard, as his father George appears to have always held US citizenship (although his grandfather emigrated to Mexico). Rick Santorum is the acknowledged son of immigrants, and has not gone public with the dates of his parents’ naturalization, so it is conceivable that he also has a problem and is hoping it won’t ever come up.

        • Can you point to the section of the constitution or a law which outlines exactly what you describe? That is, that both parents must be citizens at the time of a child’s birth in order for that child to be eligible to hold the Presidency?

          I am playing Devil’s advocate here… how deeply can you cite a legal reference for your opinion on this?

  2. Rubio might be able to deliver Florida but the Latino vote goes to Obama everyplace else. Just don’t see any VP choice as a big + but the wrong choice could be a big -.

  3. Has Reuters verified this report about there being only three Ronmey VP choices left being considered ? This is all speculation , and yes, ONLY the Romney Campaign has that information! Many believe Rubio would be the best choice to energize the Conservative & Tea Party base , plus connect with Hispanics & Florida .. I agree with that!

    • energize, I think that’s the key here for both parties. Just don’t think the GOP will show up at the polls.

  4. Let’s take a step back before we worry over the VP pick–so frustrating week after wasted week.

    Most important, Romney needs to TEACH the public what a private equity firm like Bain Capital does–few know the purpose let alone the enormous risk. Obama framed the argument because Romney has avoided discussing Bain. Teach first, then discuss some of Bain’s many successes. Do it publicly, repeat in ads & keep specifics of his experience relative to presidential office in regular stump speeches. If any off-shoring of jobs was done during Romney’s tenure, prior to 1999, what is the point compared to Obama using taxpayer money in green energy loans to do the very same thing?

    Second, Romney needs to spell out clearly his plans to replace Obamacare, the aspects to retain, the sources he’d use for his reform (as in doctors which where not included in Obama’s closed door meetings). Important to emphasize the list of 20+ taxes included in Obamacare which are a dirty little secret to many. Include fact that Obamacare is 2,700 pgs while Massachusetts plan was 86 pgs.

    Third, for many who don’t understand how the “economy” works, Romney needs to spell out a detailed plan indicating how he would turn things around, unemployment included, point by point. Five main policies would be impressive. Generic ‘ideas’ don’t make the case.

    Fourth, Romney should point out importance of his administrative experience as governor as best preparation for presidential office.

    The 59 point online plan online is not a substitute for directly addressing the public in these four significant areas.

    His VP choice is not nearly as important as first catching up with the above. It appears Romney’s senior advisers are weak in the knees?

  5. Ha. Pundits theorized that Romney would start leaking info on the Veepstakes since he simply has NO way to answer the charges about Bain. And, voila, presto-chango, it’s the switcheroo.


    Willard is toast.

  6. Nate: Regarding Neville’s comment, he was referring to Article 2, Section 1, paragraph 5:

    No person except a natural born Citizen, or a Citizen of the United States, at
    the time of the Adoption of this Constitution, shall be eligible to the Office
    of President; neither shall any Person be eligible to that Office who shall not
    have attained to the Age of thirty-five Years, and been fourteen Years a
    Resident within the United States.

    The purpose of this section was to protect the United States from a practice that was common in Europe at the time: Royalty would intermarry, and the leader of one country would suddenly become the leader of another. The Founders did NOT want that to happen here, so only AMERICANS can be president. Period.

    Since then, all sorts of things have been read into it. And if you read it carefully, you could come to the conclusion that ALL but one president after William Henry Harrison are ILLEGAL, because they were NOT born, NOR citizens, as of the adoption of the Constitution in 1789.

    I believe Neville was asserting that a “natural born” citizen would have to have two parents who were citizens. Arguable. Are you”natural born” if you were delivered by C-section? You could go on all day about this one paragraph.

    • Goethe,

      I mostly agree with you, but cannot agree with “if you read it carefully, you could come to the conclusion that ALL but one president after William Henry Harrison are ILLEGAL”.

      I believe the Constitution is very clear in creating the necessary rule and the necessary exceptions, and I do not see your reading of it at all.

      • Neville:

        I’m just saying that if you work hard enough, you can interpret things in a LOT of different ways. Here is how it can be read the way I suggested:

        AS WRITTEN:
        No person except a natural born Citizen, or a Citizen of the United States, at
        the time of the Adoption of this Constitution, shall be eligible to the Office
        of President. . .

        “ONLY a citizen AT THE TIME OF THE ADOPTION OF THIS CONSTITUTION shall be eligible.”

        CONVERSELY, and I don’t know why the Obama people didn’t use this:

        “Only a natural-born Citizen, OR A CITIZEN OF THE UNITED STATES.”

        In other words, if you can claim citizenship, you can be elected. The requirement to be “natural born” is negated by the word “OR.”

        As I noted before, the intention of the Founders was to protect us from ourselves. They were afraid that someone like JUSTIN BIEBER would be so popular that he could be elected president!! I’m being facetious, but let’s say we all loved Alexander Putin. We might have elected him president of the United States, and suddenly, we would have become unified with Russia. That sort of thing was common at the time of the Signing.


    • The issue, as you mentioned, is the interpretation of that very open-ended phrase in Article 2, Section 1, paragraph 5 which could be debated ad nauseam.

      Thus I am asking for more statutes, cases, etc.. that actually attempt to define NBC the way that Neville does. That is, both parents must be citizens at the time a child is born for a child to be a NBC.

      • Neville:

        The Constitution sometimes was “written by committee,” which means one or two people knew what they meant, but we don’t.

        Hamilton’s first draft was a lot simpler, and should be considered the guiding light on the subject. It was–

        “No person shall be eligible to the office of President of the United States unless he be now a Citizen of one of the States, or hereafter be born a Citizen of the United States.”

        That would have preempted all the falderal.

        How about this:

        “The Naturalization Act of 1790 stated that “the children of citizens of the United States that may be born beyond sea, or out of the limits of the United States, shall be considered as natural born citizens”


        Alexander Porter Morse, regarding Plessy v. Ferguson, wrote:

        “The framers thought it wise, in view of the probable influx of European immigration, to provide that the president should at least be the child of citizens owing allegiance to the United States at the time of his birth.”

        Or this:

        Supreme Court Associate Justice Joseph Story wrote :

        “It is not too much to say that no one, but a native [living here] citizen, ought ordinarily to be intrusted with an office so vital to the safety and liberties of the people.”

        This was not a supreme court decision, but in Lynch v. Clarke, the court cited the Constitutional provision and said:

        “Suppose a person should be elected president who was native born, but of alien parents; could there be any reasonable doubt that he was eligible under the Constitution? I think not.”

        Or this:

        In memorandum to Congress dated April 3, 2009, the Congressional Research Service (CRS), states:

        “Considering the history of the constitutional qualifications provision, the common use and meaning of the phrase “natural-born subject” in England and in the Colonies in the 1700s, the clause’s apparent intent, the subsequent action of the first Congress in enacting the Naturalization Act of 1790 (expressly defining the term “natural born citizen” to include a person born abroad to parents who are United States citizens), as well as subsequent Supreme Court dicta, it appears that the most logical inferences would indicate that the phrase “natural born Citizen” would mean a person who is entitled to U.S. citizenship “at birth” or “by birth.”

        Dead horse, turned into glue, still sticking to us (as Billy says, too).

      • An up hill battle for sure as even I could not cone up with 2 current government issued ID’s needed to get a copy of my birth certificate. However just as soon as they check out my DD-214 and get a photo copy of my military ID card they may give me a copy of my birth certificate so I can renew my drivers license. Don’t ever let it expire as it is hell to get it renewed if it does.

        • Neville:

          People see what they want to see, and don’t see what they don’t want to see.

          Point out and explain any contradictions. I see none.

          Likewise, I would say, the CRS statement could hardly be more clear. In simple English, it means, a “natural citizen” is a citizen, and a “natural born citizen” is a citizen at birth. Likewise, it reaffirms that the 1790 Naturalization Act clearly says that a child of Americans is an American, even if he’s born on the moon.

          The only argument you can really make is that people at that time used the term “parents,” because it was assumed that both parents were American, and they would not have thought otherwise. Travel was not as easy as it is now, so it was extremely out of the ordinary for a person to have a non-American parent. So uncommon, in fact, that it never came to mind. But to argue it that way is a frivolous technicality.

          • Well, Goethe, here is one glaring example. Your quote from Morse is incomplete, leaving out important text, and furthermore if one reads enough Morse then it is clear that he did NOT view “native-born” citizens as having the fullness of rights as do natural-born citizens.

            Here is a more complete version of the Morse quote from his article entitled “NATURAL-BORN CITIZEN OF THE UNITED STATES: ELIGIBILITY FOR THE OFFICE OF PRESIDENT” :

            “If it was intended that anybody who was a citizen by birth should be eligible, it would only have been necessary to say, “no person, except a native-born citizen”; but the framers thought it wise, in view of the probable influx of European immigration, to provide that the president should at least be the child of citizens owing allegiance to the United States at the time of his birth. It may be observed in passing that the current phrase “native-born citizen” is well understood; but it is pleonasm and should be discarded; and the correct designation, “native citizen” should be substituted in all constitutional and statutory enactments, in judicial decisions and in legal discussions where accuracy and precise language are essential to intelligent discussion.”

            So, beyond his initial explanation of the clear difference, Morse goes on to opine that the phrase native-born citizen is synonymous with native citizen, thus both fall short of the founders intent of the “natural-born citizen” requirement.

            Twenty years prior, Morse had written (quoting and agreeing with Judge Cooley) that “the children of aliens born in the United States are subject to the jurisdiction of the United States only in a much qualified sense”. According to other writings and his use here of “aliens”, Morse appears to have been even stricter in his stance than today’s “dualers”, in that to him, not even being born to *naturalized* parents was sufficient to qualify one as a natural-born citizen.

            Morse’s own body of work refutes the conclusion your example is claimed to support.

            My reference to internal inconsistency in the CRS quote is in fact based on exactly what you theorize – that I hold the use of the specific and careful original terms to be extremely important in determining original intent, and CRS first references the 1790 Act’s clear use of “parents” (plural) and then turns around and attempts to make that equivalent to what we recognize as birthright citizenship requiring only a single citizen parent. It is most certainly noit the “most logical” inference. There is a large body of evidence (of which I gave some references in my original reply) indicating otherwise, and I have done enough work in and for the courts to understand how carefully wordsmithed such opinions can be (and are). Their reference to the 1790 Naturalization Act is also disingenous as this language was removed a scant five years later, when Congress realized that it was not their prerogative to change definitions of terms in the Constitution.

            Another thing that jumped out at me is the reference to Hamilton’s original draft providing the explanation of what the framers intended. That is specious logic. The only thing we can legitimately infer from Hamilton’s draft is that it indicates what Hamilton intended. The final adopted language reflects what the Congress intended, after much opinion, debate, and compromise, and finally agreed to live with if ratified by the states.

  7. Nate,

    I did write up an extensive article on this a while back, citing many many works from the founding era and others since. It was not my own legal analysis, as I am not an attorney of any kind. Much of what I included came from the work of Leo Donofrio, a very colorful but very brilliant attorney and researcher who pretty much kick-started this whole issue during the 2008 campaign by suing the NJ SoSto remove 3 POTUS candidates from the NJ ballot. There was other info as well, but over the past 4+ years, I have found Donofrio to be more thorough and reliable than any of the other well-known players in this particular game.

    I store all my stuff in my web mail, but the archive search is not working right now (I think it is re-indexing). I will search again and hopefully pull it up. In the meantime, I can point you toward some sources you can read and further research:

    Good article, but unfortunately now sits behind a subscriber wall:

    Perhaps the contemporary work most influential on our founders, if one is to believe Washington, Madison, Franklin, et al.:
    Law of Nations by E. Vattel 1857 (various SCOTUS and US federal court system cases cite and rely on Vattel in their rulings)

    SCOTUS cases which affect the interpretation of NBC requirements in different ways, including explaining the different types of citizenship that may be enjoyed in the U.S.A.:
    The Venus 1814
    Dred Scott v Sandford 1857
    Minor v Happersett 1874
    U.S. v Wong Kim Ark 1898
    Perkins v Elg 1939

    The writings of and between
    J. Bingham
    G. Washington
    J. Madison
    (I can provide others, these are off the top of my head)

    Does this help you?

  8. WE need to concentrate on the Senate & House races. We as a country strain at knats and swallow camels!

    • Mary,

      Do you honestly think that a gross violation of the eligibility requirements for the “highest office in the land” is straining at gnats?

      Should we be so focused on Congressional races that we allow this rule to be tossed on the garbage heap and no longer worry about who holds the office of POTUS? If we let this current usurpation stand, then there is absolutely nothing to stop, say, Syrian President al Assad from sending a pregnant wife to the US to have her baby, who would then be just as eligible as Mr. Obama to hold the office someday. Or, let’s really use our imaginations, what if a woman here chose to become pregnant by A.I. via a long-held Mussolini or Hitler sperm donation, or perhaps Osama bin Laden might have done the same. Then that woman’s baby would have the same claim to a right to run for POTUS as does Obama. What a wonderful way to infiltrate a government – at the very highest level. This is some pretty far out stuff, but it’s certainly possible if we do not stop this abuse in its tracks. I would have to vehemently disagree that this is straining at gnats.

        • Presidents don’t create jobs and boost the economy. But they do sometimes send troops into war on the “President’s” own authority, getting thousands or tens of thousands killed unnecessarily and burdening our great grandchildren with the slaves’ yoke of financial bondage.

          • Well, that’s not really true. Presidents CAN “create jobs.” They can start wars, which employs soldiers and pumps money into the killing machine, which hires people, who buy stuff and cause the demand that “creates” jobs.

            Or, people could be hired to work on constructive things, like Ike’s interstate highway system.

            Of course, such things should be paid for, if they are deemed necessary. That’s the part that politicians forget.

            • I liked Ike. He was the only president to ever tell the Joint Chiefs of Staff to (and I quote:) “go f*ck yourselves.” And he made his mark with his “military-industrial complex” speech. I’d call that vision.

              Just as it took Nixon to go to China, it took a five-star general to keep us mostly out of war for most of the 50s, despite the insane “red scare.”

            • Never been one to knock success so let’s move on. but I had to put my U-2 cents in, LOL.

          • Goethe,

            You are technically correct. I was careless with my choice of words. I was trying to say that according to the proper job of the POTUS, he/she is not to “create jobs”.

            • Neville:

              Gotcha. That’s the silly thing. People blame the president or praise the president, but he really has very little to do with it–and shouldn’t.

              The economy will always have a boom-bust cycle, with idealistic people taking risks and staring new endeavors during the boom, and the bust cycle is when the financial sharks swoop in, wipe them out, and take what they have built. (Of course, Bain-type parasites destroy healthy companies. That’s not normal “business.” And that’s why I don’t think Willard should be called a “businessman.”)

            • Government’s job is to create and maintain an environment where business can be conducted without force or fraud.

    • Yeah the Great corporate chop shop operator who turned a $450,000 investment into something worth over $100 million in 15 years. But there is more as Romney is worth close to $300 million. Where did that come from? His father George created thousands of jobs and brought billions of dollars into his state. His son Mitt destroyed thousands of jobs and put millions of U S dollars offshore. Oh, yeah, he is indeed grate.


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