U.S. Sen. Rob Portman, R-Ohio, is said to be on the short list of V.P. candidates for Mitt Romney, so I asked Portman this question in Denver during his Wednesday tour of Colorado as a surrogate for the Romney campaign…
“Will you be returning to Colorado as Mitt Romney’s running mate and campaigning for him?”
Here’s his response..
“Well, I’d like to come back to Colorado. I’ve already told [former U.S. Rep. Bob] Beauprez that I’d like to come back. It’s a great day today. I don’t know what capacity it would be. I’m also chairing the effort in Ohio. We’ve got a lot of work to do there. Look, I think if Colorado goes in the Romney column and Ohio does, I don’t see how we lose. They’re both swing states.”
Portman also said he’s seeing people “really energized” to elect a Republican as president this year, as compared to 2008, when both Colorado and Ohio went for then-U.S. Sen. Barack Obama as president.
“And it’s consistent with what you see in the polls, too. Not just the 5-point spread today, but that there’s more intensity on our side this year, which was not the case in 2008…We had a little issue last go-round. People were not as energized this much on our side. It’s entirely different this year.”
The interview took place a stone’s throw away from the site where then-U.S. Senator Barack Obama accepted the Democratic nomination for president four years ago.
Portman had a good line, “Where are the Greek columns?” in his earlier remarks, referring to the backdrop of Obama’s acceptance speech that night.
I’m originally from Ohio, have followed the Buckeye State Senator for most of his professional career in Ohio and in Washington, D.C., and had the chance to meet him for the first time in 2004 when I worked as a field coordinator for the Republican National Committee. Needless to say, I’m impressed with Sen. Portman’s credentials: he served in the U.S. House, as U.S. Trade Representative, as Director of the Office of Management and Budget, before being elected to the Senate in 2010.