Heilemann talks up Rob Portman:
A former congressman, U.S. trade representative, and head of the Office of Management and Budget under George W. Bush, Portman has as firm a grasp of fiscal issues as anyone in Washington.
He is solid and stolid, bland and boring, and as egregiously Caucasian as a potful of Uncle Ben’s. But he also won election to the senate in 2010—with 57 percent of the vote and carrying 82 of Ohio’s 88 counties—in what may be the most important battleground state on the map. His snoozy dependability and managerial affect would reinforce Romney’s argument that he and not Obama is capable of fixing what ails the capital and the economy. And, by comparison, Portman’s dishwatery demeanor might actually make Romney look like a bit of a spitfire. (No kidding—Portman really is that dull.)
But the paramount reason Portman would be Romney’s smartest and safest pick is this: He would both be and be immediately universally regarded as qualified for the gig.