Over the past few months, there's been increasing buzz that Mitt Romney will pick a vice-president who's safe, dull, older and white.
People usually look to Rob Portman as the fulfillment of that prophecy, but there are now a few more "boring white guys" who are giving him a run for his money on betting markets.
INTRADE betting market for VP:
1. Rob Portman 22.0
2. Marco Rubio 16.2
3. Chris Christie 8.0
4. Mitch Daniels 6.8
5. Tim Pawlenty 6.0
T-Paw and Daniels are newbies to this rarefied air. For example, Pawlenty hasn't been this high since August 2011 when he dropped out, endorsed Romney, and became a chair of his campaign -- thus, raising speculation to an artificial high, at that time.
Meanwhile, Mitch has been mired in the 1%-3% range for most of the year, and only started jumping last month.
And even though Portman has been trending up for awhile, his 22 is a new, personal high.
Remember how sexy the VP roster used to look? Paul Ryan, Bobby Jindal, Susana Martinez, Nikki Haley, Kelly Ayotte, Bob McDonnell.
Some of those are still possibilities, but clearly buzz on the betting markets has moved towards the more traditional, old, white male variety of politician.
Lest you think discrimination is at work, it's not. The key factor is that most of the young, sexier names are, well, young and sexy and don't have quite the experience Romney is supposedly looking for.
In a way, Romney's caution might be warranted. If he's slightly ahead or tied with Obama (as he is now), a safe pick makes sense. But if he's consistently down 4%-5% this summer, a safe pick becomes risky, and he'll need someone more exciting to shake things up.