Huffpost Politics
Rachel Weiner Headshot

Romney Moving Up In McCain's Mind

Posted: Updated:

First Read catches John McCain poking fun at former rival Mitt Romney, and they see it as a sign of rising VP potential:

At a fundraiser in New Mexico last night, McCain cracked this joke at Romney's expense: "I'm appreciative every time I see Mitt on television on my behalf. He does a better job for me than he did for himself as a matter of fact." Bada bing. If McCain can start joking about someone, you know they've made it into his mental inner circle. Romney may very well be higher on the short list than anyone realizes. The biggest roadblock for many in picturing a McCain-Romney ticket is McCain getting over his personal reservations about him. But joking about him is a start.

Marc Ambinder adds some reasons why McCain should pick Romney:

First, he's a solid communicator on domestic policy, complementary to his would-be boss, who isn't. This election -- it seems more clear by the week -- will be won by the guy who is most plausibly a Mr. Fix-It. McCain needs help inside the contiguous 48.

Romney passes the threshold commander in chief test, he would be a plausible governing partner for McCain, his shop would never leak, he would do what McCain asked of him, and he's generationally appropriate: where McCain physically recoils at questions about, say, sex and culture, Romney can diffuse them with a joke.

The Politico reported two weeks ago that Romney is on the top of McCain's list.