Mitt Romney Is Vetting Potential Female Vice Presidential Candidates

You couldn’t get a more reliable source than Ann Romney. She confirms that her husband is thinking about picking a woman to be on his ticket. So who are they looking at? Here’s the likely short list along with a little bit about each potential candidate.

Sen. Kelly Ayotte of New Hampshire

NYDN – “The veepstakes speculation has largely focused on men, including Sens. Rob Portman of Ohio and Marco Rubio of Florida, but Romney’s decision to have Ayotte by his side on the Fourth of July raises speculation that she’s rising higher on his short list.”

New Mexico Gov. Susana Martinez

CNN’s Candy Crowley recently highlighted Martinez’s suitability for the job because she has “a trifecta of political assets: female, Hispanic and a swing state governor.”

Crowley, however, said Martinez might be docked for her limited experience as governor and low national recognition, factors that hurt Sarah Palin as the Republican vice presidential nominee in 2008.

Rep. Cathy McMorris Rodgers of Washingon

Stewart J. Lawrence – “The GOP’s Least Known but Best Qualified VP Candidate May Be a Woman”

South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley

The latest poll numbers show her approval rating is hovering around 35 percent.

Oklahoma Gov. Mary Fallin

State Auditor and Inspector Gary Jones, a co-chairman of the Romney campaign in Oklahoma, pointed out that Falln’s experience in Washington also makes her a good potential vice presidential candidate.

Before she was elected governor, Fallin represented Oklahoma’s 5th Congressional District. She also has been lieutenant governor and served in the Oklahoma House.

Off those mentioned Ayotte and McMorris Rodgers seem most likely to make a short list of candidates. But the real question, as pointed out by an informal Romney advisor was whether Sarah Palin so “poisoned the well” for any potential female VP pick that it completely takes them out of consideration.

Publically the Romney’s are at least floating the idea of a female running mate.

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