The PJ Tatler

Condi for Veep? Not No Way. Not No How

Is there anyone reading this who seriously entertains the notion that Mitt Romney is giving any consideration to choosing Condi Rice as his running mate?

Still, the proprieties must be observed and herewith is the skinny on the shortest vice presidential boomlet in recorded history:

A new round of speculation about Mitt Romney’s running-mate deliberations ensued after a media report mentioned an unconventional choice: former Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice.

The Drudge Report website set Washington ablaze in another round of the vice-presidential guessing game Thursday night by posting an item attributed to “sources” naming her as one of the top contenders to be the presumptive Republican nominee’s running mate.

The item mentioned a fundraising email Ms. Rice, 57 years old, sent Thursday night on Mr. Romney’s behalf as part of the campaign’s “Meet the VP” drive, an initiative intended to increase the number of small-dollar donors in which the winners get to meet the candidate and his eventual running mate.

No one in the Romney camp would confirm or deny the story, in keeping with the campaign’s tight-lipped approach to the selection process. But it’s possible the item was a trial balloon from the campaign attempting to gauge the reaction to Ms. Rice as a possible pick.

The report caused outsize fanfare because Romney campaign manager Matt Rhoades has a close working relationship with Matt Drudge, who launched the site in the 1990s and made his preference for the former Massachusetts governor clear during the Republican primary.

Mr. Rhoades sent an email to supporters late Thursday night alerting them to the campaign’s latest fundraising push, telling the recipients, “Sometime between now and the Republican convention, Mitt will be announcing his choice for VP.”

I’m sure that somewhere, there is a conservative — maybe two — who read Drudge and immediately said to themselves, “Eureka! She’s the one!.”

For the rest, the yowling outrage could be heard to the far corners of righty-land:

“I don’t know who is hitting the crack rock tonight in the rumor mill, but bull shiitake mushrooms,” RedState’s Erick Erickson wrote. “Condelizza Rice is pro-abortion. She worked for George Bush for eight years.”

Go ahead and tell us how you really think, Erick.

Problem one: Bush, Bush, Bush. As I’ve said before, Jeb Bush can’t run for president because he’s related to Dubya but Dubya’s handpicked NSA-turned-Secretary-of-State is A-OK as number two?,” HotAir’s pseudonymous AllahPundit wrote. “Why not double down and promise that Hank Paulson will be back at Treasury if Mitt wins.

Never underestimate the capacity of a presidential candidate to delude himself.

The most scathing take came from The American Conservative’s Daniel Larison.

“Rice did a lousy job as National Security Adviser and Secretary of State, and she has the unusual distinction of being distrusted and disliked by many neoconservatives, most realists, and all non-interventionists in almost equal measure,” he wrote earlier this week.

“She is closely associated with an administration that was widely regarded as incompetent in the conduct of foreign policy, and she helped to craft one of the least successful foreign policy records of any postwar administration. Those are her qualifications in the area in which she is considered an expert. On everything else, her policy views are either out of step with the majority of her party or unknown.”

So, what’s not to like there?

Choosing Rice wouldn’t be a pick “outside the box.” It would be a pick outside the known universe. The God particle would have a hard time finding a dimension where such a notion would be considered wise, practical, and rational.

In the immortal words of the Cowardly Lion: “Not no way. Not no how.”

(Also read Roger Simon’s “The First American Vice President With a Talent for Anything” and Bryan Preston’s “Condi for Veep? How About No.”)