Opening Act: Sanford

Weigel
Reporting on Politics and Policy.
April 2 2012 8:05 AM

Opening Act: Sanford

SANFORD, Fla. -- I'll be in this city for a few days as the outrage and leaks about the Trayvon Martin shooting keep flowing.

David Weigel David Weigel

David Weigel is a reporter for Bloomberg Politics

The conventional thinking has been that after a long and divisive primary campaign, the challenge of uniting the GOP would force Romney to pick a running mate with strong appeal to tea party activists and evangelicals. But Romney’s team thinks he may be liberated from that pressure if he can finish off remaining rivals Rick Santorum, Newt Gingrich and Ron Paul in the next few weeks.
Advertisement

Conservatives are aghast at this, probably because it's so logical. But I don't know what serious running mate candidate would be anathema to the base. Rick Santorum's wins are mostly situational; he's not really a darling of the Tea Party. Marco Rubio, who's endorsed Romney, hasn't been out in front against any particular Obama outrages. The only troublesome names in Rucker's lists might be Rob Portman, who earned some Milbank ink love for talking up tax reform, and Gov. Brian Sandoval, who's also not orthodox on taxes. But we're not talking about Romney forcing a pro-choice running mate on Tampa.

Nia-Malika Henderson asks where the Paul surge is.

Although Paul is running to lead a party that looks like him — older, whiter, Southern — his crowds are younger, war-weary, more diverse and less likely to identify with one party or to vote. The same independent streak that leads the young and the restless to Paul’s libertarian philosophy seems to make it more unlikely that these supporters will pick a side and a party, which is a requirement for many of the primary and caucus contests.

Well, sure, but the mega-crowds are a little misleading. Romney, Santorum, and Gingrich pack in multiple rallies each day, in different parts of primary states. Paul has only been holding "giant town hall meetings" at college campuses. His next tour, a swing of California, takes him to Cal State - Chico, UCLA, and UC - Berkeley. All Paul fans in the area come to the rally that's within 100 miles.

David Weigel is a reporter for Bloomberg Politics

TODAY IN SLATE

Justice Ginsburg’s Crucial Dissent in the Texas Voter ID Case

The Jarring Experience of Watching White Americans Speak Frankly About Race

How Facebook’s New Feature Could Come in Handy During a Disaster

The Most Ingenious Teaching Device Ever Invented

Sprawl, Decadence, and Environmental Ruin in Nevada

View From Chicago

You Should Be Able to Sell Your Kidney

Or at least trade it for something.

Space: The Next Generation

An All-Female Mission to Mars

As a NASA guinea pig, I verified that women would be cheaper to launch than men.

Terrorism, Immigration, and Ebola Are Combining Into a Supercluster of Anxiety

The Legal Loophole That Allows Microsoft to Seize Assets and Shut Down Companies

  News & Politics
Jurisprudence
Oct. 19 2014 1:05 PM Dawn Patrol Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg’s critically important 5 a.m. wake-up call on voting rights.
  Business
Business Insider
Oct. 19 2014 11:40 AM Pot-Infused Halloween Candy Is a Worry in Colorado
  Life
Outward
Oct. 17 2014 5:26 PM Judge Begrudgingly Strikes Down Wyoming’s Gay Marriage Ban
  Double X
The XX Factor
Oct. 17 2014 4:23 PM A Former FBI Agent On Why It’s So Hard to Prosecute Gamergate Trolls
  Slate Plus
Tv Club
Oct. 20 2014 7:15 AM The Slate Doctor Who Podcast: Episode 9 A spoiler-filled discussion of "Flatline."
  Arts
Brow Beat
Oct. 20 2014 8:32 AM Marvel’s Civil War Is a Far-Right Paranoid Fantasy—and a Mess. Can the Movies Fix It?
  Technology
Future Tense
Oct. 17 2014 6:05 PM There Is No Better Use For Drones Than Star Wars Reenactments
  Health & Science
Bad Astronomy
Oct. 20 2014 7:00 AM Gallery: The Red Planet and the Comet
  Sports
Sports Nut
Oct. 16 2014 2:03 PM Oh What a Relief It Is How the rise of the bullpen has changed baseball.