Veepstakes Hometown Dates

Last night, Jon Stewart compared Obama’s courting of the press prior to and during his overseas trip to the reality TV show, The Bachelor (“As I understand it on each night of the trip Barack Obama will give a rose to the anchors he wants to stay.”)

It isn’t hard to see a similar application to the Veepstakes (in fact, we’ve so applied it here before).

Today, the Christian Science Monitor’s Linda Feldman files a piece on the 2008 Veepstakes (The Most Shocking Rose Ceremony Ever, naturally) filled with Bachelor-like details.

In pursuit of McCain’s final rose, Feldman reports, “[Tim] Pawlenty, the governor of Minnesota… has cut off his little ‘mullet’ in favor of a more conventional hair style” (just like that martial arts master from Kentucky on the most recent Bachelorette!). And, so that he might appear more the marrying kind to McCain, Feldman writes, Gov. Charlie Crist of Florida will actually get married “thus dampening some of the concern about his lack of a wedding band” (having, or having had a ring didn’t do much for Jason’s pursuit of DeAnna).

The “beauty” of the Veepstakes (or “all the talk,” as Feldman puts it) for a political reporter is that “there is no way to disprove any of the theories” (that is, idle speculation) “at least until the actual selections are announced.” And, Feldman reports,”those with a window into [the candidates’] thinking aren’t talking, and those who talk probably don’t have a clue.”

At which point Feldman quotes some of the people she just told readers are “probably” clueless.

Like “McCain insiders” who, Feldman reports, “stress the importance of the senator’s personal comfort level with his potential No. 2” and suggest that Mitt Romney “isn’t a slam dunk. But they don’t rule it out.”

And “Dan Schnur, who ran communications for McCain in his 2000 presidential race and is not active in the current race” who offers that Romney “still seems like an unlikely pick, if only because of the importance McCain puts on those types of personal feelings. But for all the talk, Romney certainly brings a lot of political benefits to the ticket, which could force McCain to reconsider how important that type of personal chemistry is to him.”

Will the recipient of McCain’s final rose be merely a Veep with benefits or true love? Stay tuned later this week (next week? week after?)

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Liz Cox Barrett is a writer at CJR.