Tim Pawlenty? Mitt Romney? Tom Ridge?
With Republican presidential candidate John McCain's VP choice due later today, these three names have been bandied about in recent days. While Ridge has historically been quiet on video game issues, Pawlenty and Romney (seen with McCain at left)come with major baggage as far as gamers are concerned.
That said, Ridge seems an unlikely choice, since he adds little to the McCain ticket. For one thing, he's older than the other two and McCain would seem to need some youthful balance in a running mate. For another, as former Homeland Security Director, he's too closely associated with the Bush Administration in a time when the electorate craves change. And although he is from a key state, he doesn't seem likely to swing Pennsylvania red in November.
That leaves Gov. Tim Pawlenty of Minnesota and former Gov. Mitt Romney of Massachusetts as potential VP choices. As we said, both have a negative history with video game issues.
Pawlenty signed Minnesota's notorious, 2006 "fine the buyer" legislation into law. The bill, which would have fined underage buyers of M-rated games $25, was quickly overturned by a federal judge. Minnesota also lost a subsequent appeal on that decision. Pawlenty, who has owned up to playing NHL2K5 with his kids, brings youth to the McCain ticket.
For his part, Romney (who apparently thinks torturing real people is okay) made the cartoon violence of video games a theme of his failed 2008 presidential bid. Romney is a favorite of the religious right, a group which is not particularly fond of McCain.
UPDATE: CNN is reporting that Pawlenty is out of the running and is also speculating that Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin is in the VP mix...