Rick Perry/Nikki Haley ’12

By the end of August there will be a slingshot effect, like that they used to swing the astronauts around the Earth to pitch them to the moon, but this a rapid thrust in cultural and political velocity. The dreary budget ceiling bickering — which casts its pall on all parties involved — will be resolved, but more than that football will be back, brought to a fever pitch after the recent threats of cancellation. And one candidate will ride that American energy forward as Pecos Bill rode the cyclone: Rick Perry, governor of Texas. There may be another, Sarah Palin and maybe a third, Rudy Giuliani. But the one long awaited and the one in my opinion likely to ride the new conservative action and passion to the Republican nomination will be Rick Perry.

His choice for vice president might look back to the “establishment” to bring continuity; best for that might be Rob Portman of Ohio. Better would be Jon Huntsman Jr. in an all-Western ticket to follow the contours of the demographics heading west and the new economy travelling across the Pacific. And he needs someone young, dynamic and new to the national field like Huntsman or Bobby Jindal, the very popular governor of Louisiana. But both might be too close to home.

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