Former White House political guru Karl Rove is urging that Sen. John McCain pick Mitt Romney as his running mate, writes veteran Washington columnist Robert Novak.
According to Novak, Rove and other GOP bigwigs want Romney in the No. 2 spot despite the bad blood that exists between the former Massachusetts governor and McCain, an enmity that grew out of their heated rivalry during the Republican presidential primaries.
Insiders say that having Romney, who is worth between an estimated $190 million to $250 million, would bring an infusion of big bucks into the cash-strapped McCain campaign. Moreover, conservatives unhappy with McCain (like author Ann Coulter) who are threatening to vote for the Democratic candidate say they'll back McCain if he picks Romney.
Some of Romney's closest advisors are dead set against his taking the vice presidential slot, Novak adds, reporting that they have been "injecting into the political rumor stream an unsubstantiated report that McCain obtained the vital endorsement of Florida Gov. Charlie Crist by promising him the vice presidential nomination."
He adds that their floating that rumor "reflects the anger in the Romney camp over the late endorsements of McCain by Crist and Sen. Mel Martinez of Florida. Until then, the Romney insiders claim, their private polls showed a lead in the Jan. 29 Florida primary that in fact delivered a crushing victory for McCain."
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