With the Olympics and the back-to-back nominating conventions, the timing of when Barack Obama and John McCain will name their running mates is almost as much a part of the guessing game as the who.
The New York Times reported today that Obama has all but settled on his choice, and could make it public as soon as Wednesday morning. ABC News is reporting today that Obama has picked someone, but hasn't told that person yet.
The Chicago Sun-Times is reporting that the Obama campaign has reserved the Old State Capitol in Springfield, Ill., for a rally Saturday promoting the new ticket. The Associated Press says the new running mate will appear at the event. Obama used that same venue, where Abraham Lincoln once served, in February 2007 to announce his presidential bid.
Those most mentioned these days in the speculation: Senators Evan Bayh of Indiana and Joe Biden of Delaware, and Governor Tim Kaine of Virginia.
Obama praised Biden during a speech today in Florida, but Biden told reporters later, "I'm not the guy."
On the Republican side, the Politico website is reporting that McCain plans to name his choice a week from Friday -- the day after Obama gives his acceptance speech at the Democratic convention -- when he already has major rallies planned in battleground state including Ohio.
And the National Review is reporting that McCain officials are quietly calling GOP leaders in several states about the impact of picking a running mate who supports abortion rights -- suggesting that McCain is at least considering candidates such as former Governor Tom Ridge of Pennsylvania.
"Everybody wants to be the vice president," Ridge said on CNN this afternoon.
But conservative radio talk show host Rush Limbaugh today sounded the alarm bells about McCain choosing Ridge or another abortion rights supporter, warning that the "fur is going to fly on this one."
"I think they're misjudging if they think they can put a pro-choice candidate on the ticket," Limbaugh said on his show. "McCain's telling us that he's going to go out and make sure that he picks the right kind of judges for the Supreme Court. Well, now, one of the definitions that the conservative base has for the right kind of judge on the Supreme Court is not somebody who's going to vote to affirm Roe v. Wade if it ever comes up."
Besides Ridge, names much talked about recently: Governor Tim Pawlenty of Minnesota and former Governor Mitt Romney of Massachusetts.
About Political Intelligence
Glen Johnson is Politics Editor at boston.com and lead blogger for "Political Intelligence." He moved to Massachusetts in the fourth grade, and has covered local, state, and national politics for over 25 years. E-mail him at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow him on Twitter @globeglen.