The names on this list have earned their place here for numerous reasons but the one thing they all share in common is a record that has shown them to be exceptional leaders who in addition to bringing their own unique set of positive characteristics to the potential G.O.P. ticket, have demonstrated an undeniable ability to serve our nation well if called upon in the capacity of President.
Of course events could change the political landscape and force other names to rise to the surface, but in the meantime, this list it is a reflection of the extensive pool of exceptional leaders that the G.O.P. has to choose from and each one of these names would prove to be far superior to the current Vice President.
Click on the image of each candidate to be taken to their White House 2012 Vice Presidential Long List page where you will find biographical information in addition to their record on the issues, public statements and links to their websites.
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Santorum was the come from behind surprise of the 2012 election. He came out of nowhere to became Romney’s toughest opponent. There is some doubt as to exactly why that was the case. One school of thought is that after many candidates became temporary flavors of the week, most voters finally settled upon Santorum as the clear alternative to Romney. Others might suggest that Santorum struck a chord with the Republican base that Romney has not been able to. Both are probably true. So the natural conclusion might be to pair them up on the same ticket.
Unfortuantely it is not that easy.
Santorum probably is not the best candidate to link Romney to.
Despite a long campaign, if he is chosen as the vice preisdential nominee,Santorum will remain hounded by the doubts of a fickle electorate which will be manipulated by an onslaught of liberal propoganda that will haunt Santorum and by connection, the Romney ticket.
Sanotrum’s defense of traditional marriage and strong vociferous opposition to gay rights groups has caused him to long be a poster boy for the hatred of left wing groups. They have attacked and mocked Santorum incessently and there is no reason to believe they wouldn’t continue to do so if he is on the G.O.P. ticket. This is especially the case since President Obama has manuevered himself as a champion of gay rights after declaring that he “personally” supports gay marriage. This positioning is sure to energize the left and gay activist communities. So much so that, with the help of a liberal media, they will successfully create the impression that a Romney-Santorum ticket is too extreme and out of touch in the eyes of too many middle of the road voters. Of course this will not persuade votersfirmly esconced in either the Republican or Democrat camps to change their minds, but what it can do is create a distraction that would keep the Republican ticket off message and on the defense.
Combined with the fact that Santorum probably can’t even deliver his homestate of Pennsylvania to Republicans in November and that he lacks any real claim to fame or particular expertise on the economy or other top tier issues in this election, makes Santorum an unlikely choice for Romney.
While Santorum is deserving and capable, this just isn’t his time. Republican primary voters already made that clear.
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Sandoval is another name White House 2012 couldn’t deny early placement on the Vice Presidential Contender list. This man is a former State Assemblyman, federal judge, State Attorney General, Chairman of the state Gaming Commission and now the Governor of the rapidly growing state of Nevada.
Not only did he handily defeat an incumbent Republican Governor in a primary, he went on to trounce into the ground his Democrat opponent for Governor, Rory Reid, the son of Democrat Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid.
Whispers about his potential place on the GOP presidential ticket made its way through the political echo chamber early on. And for good reason. Being of Hispanic descent, In addition to his probable appeal to the Hispanic-American community, Sandoval is from an important swing state, is a charismatic, energetic, conservative with working class appeal and is a top notch campaigner.
While Sandoval is not a frontrunner for a spot on anyone’s short list for VP, he is a contender and Nevada could prove to be a crucial swing state in November 0f 2012. Thus making Sandoval a good name to consider.
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Fred Thompson disappointed many in 2008 with a late entry in to the Republican presidential race and only a half-hearted attempt to win the nomination. Some have suggested that he only ran as a favor to John McCain in an effort to split the conservative and Southern vote enough to allow McCain squeak by both Mike Huckabee and Mitt Romney. Thompson denies such charges, but regardless of the real reasons for his brief bid for President in 2008, it is important to remember that the only reason conservatives were disappointed is because they liked Fred Thompson, what he stood for, and the way he presented and fought for the conservative cause. Today, if given the chance, they still would like it.
That’s why although Thompson is not likely to be on the ticket in 2012, he must still be considered a possibility. For a candidate like Romney, Fred Thompson could help shore up many of Mitt’s weaknesses, especially in the South where enthusiasm for him leaves a lot to be desired. If given the chance, Thompson would be a strong running mate for just about any nominee at the top of the ticket and he is one of those unique figures who could be a very unifying force within the G.O.P. if they are still fractured prior to, and during the Republican National Convention.
I had strong reservations about including Fred Thompson on this list. I know that his is not a name that would automatically come to mind for the job in 2012 and he has taken his candidacy on the ticket off the table. However; if his name is interjected into the debate about a good vice presidential nominee in 2012, I am confident that it would go over well. So between that and my personal appreciation for Fred Thompson, I think his is a name to consider and to watch out for.
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Is Allen West a most likely choice for Vice President in 2012?
When it comes to conventional wisdom, maybe not. But in case you haven’t realized it, unconventional is in right now. Add to that the factors such as qualifications, talent, ability, and political considerations such as geography, ethnicity, and the influence of the TEA movement and what you find is that Lieutenant Colonel Allen West is indeed a perfect choice.
Congressman Allen West is only entering his second year in Congress and does not have a lengthy legislative record to rest on. But the fact that he is not a career politician is appealing to many and as a popular TEA movement figure, that lack of a political record is a plus. Unlike Rand Paul though, West has a military record that to a degree, compensates for that record among those who want some type of public service history to refer to.
Beyond that Allen West is a powerful speaker in the mold of the once popular Republican presidential frontrunner Herman Cain, and in many ways he is more knowledgeable on the issues than Cain was. Other obvious and important factors from a purely political standpoint include West’s possible appeal to the African-American community and his ability to call the important swing state of Florida his home. All of this makes Congressman, Lt. Col. Allen West a very plausible vice presidential contender.
This is especially true for Mitt Romney.
West has strong ties to and support from the evangelical community of which Romney needs help with and he is also considered a solid, consistent conservative, who is a strong, lifelong opponent of abortion and has the ability to inspire people with his conservative vision for America. All of this compensates for many of Romney’s perceived political weaknesses among the G.O.P. base.
So while this first term Congressman may not seem like an obvious choice for Vice President, I dare suggest that if he had run for President, he would have given Romney a good run for his money.
Although selecting West as a running mate might be seen as Hail Mary pass by some, you have to consider how many games have been one by similarly well played Hail Mary passes.