Freshman Sen. Rob Portman (left), seen Tuesday with Sen. Jon Kyl, is remaining neutral in Republican presidential politics, helping all candidates in Ohio.
To that end, Portman last cycle transferred $335,000 in Senate campaign funds to fellow Ohio Republicans, including a $250,000 donation to the state GOP. Additionally, he raised $1.1 million for the Ohio Republican Party, $650,000 for the National Republican Senatorial Committee and $100,000 for the National Republican Congressional Committee.
Another GOP operative who worked on a 2008 campaign described the “formulaic” process for designating someone as a vice-presidential prospect. The media and campaigns follow the formula that the contender must hold a statewide office in a swing state, satisfy the party base, diversify the ticket and have a reputation for policy expertise.
“Portman’s appeal is that he checks more than one box,” this operative continued. “He is from an enormously important state, he is a solid conservative, and he is well-respected by both parties as someone who takes governing seriously.”