- The Washington Times - Friday, June 10, 2016

With Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump heading into their party conventions next month having locked up their presidential nominations, political pundits are starting to speculate on whom each will choose for their running mate.

Asked for his predictions on a Washington, D.C., radio program on Friday morning, Fox News’ Bret Baier predicted former DNC chairman and Sen. Tim Kaine of Virginia for Mrs. Clinton’s choice while the Republican vice presidential prospects were hazier.

“I’d put a lot of chips on Tim Kaine on the Democratic side,” Mr. Baier told the hosts of WMAL’s “Mornings on the Mall,” trading on the conceit of the “Candidate Casino” segment of his daily “Special Report” program.

“I think that while there is pressure to do the hat tip to the progressive part of the Democratic Party in the wake of Bernie Sanders’ success, I do think that [Kaine] fits a lot of bills, and as a senator would be replaced by a Democratic governor in Terry McAuliffe,” Mr. Baier explained. “So I would put $75 in chips on him.”

“Now on the Republican side, I really think it’s up in the air,” Mr. Baier added. “I can’t get a sense of where Donald Trump’s head is. I think it’s going to be a lawmaker.”

While the Fox News anchor said he didn’t think former House Speaker Newt Gingrich was “off the list yet,” he thought it more likely that a currently serving senator has a better shot. “[M]y bet would probably be somebody that’s a Bob Corker or a John Thune even,” Mr. Baier said, referring to Republican senators from Tennessee and South Dakota, respectively.

Mr. Trump’s vice presidential picks could be crucial in courting skeptical conservatives who preferred second-place rival Sen. Ted Cruz of Texas.

While the American Conservative Union has graded Mr. Corker and Mr. Thune with lifetime conservative scores of 80.22 and 86.28 percents, respectively, Conservative Review — edited by syndicated radio host Mark Levin, a former Cruz backer — has a decidedly different view of both men, who have received “F” grades on the website’s “Liberty Score.”

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