- The Washington Times - Thursday, April 12, 2012

When names are kicked around as to who would make a good running mate for former Gov. Mitt Romney, I can think of many great Americans for the job. Newt Gingrich, Rick Santorum, Ron Paul, John Thune, Paul Ryan, Mike Rogers, Rand Paul, Sarah Palin, Michele Bachmann, Herman Cain, Darrell Issa, Louie Gomert and others come to mind.

But Sen. Marco Rubio from Florida is justifiably at or near the top of the list. Mr. Rubio would be a wise selection. He’s a conservative who is bright and speaks his mind with a bold conviction that warms the hearts of fellow conservatives drunk on tea. Every so often, someone comes along and inspires us, gives us real hope, tells us the truth and lays out a clear vision for the future.

These patriots are not concerned with the next election, but are concerned with the good of the nation for future generations of Americans. They know the real American dream is about leaving the nation in better shape than it was when they arrived.

These statesmen don’t seek to reshape America into something our Founders never intended, but believe in restoring those unique limited government principles that made America the envy of the world or as Ronald Reagan said, “a shining city on a hill.”

They know the real greatness of America rests with individuals, not power-hungry bureaucrats who seek to control us instead of upholding the U.S. Constitution that liberates us.

I endorse Mr. Romney for president because I believe he is the right man at the right time with the right experience and with the right vision to begin pointing this wonderful experiment in self-government in a renewed, positive direction that rewards the producers instead of punishing them.

Mr. Romney is going to need help, and like the good Mr. Rubio, Rep. Allen West is another conservative shining star from Florida.

While a vice-presidential selection is Mr. Romney’s call, he would be wise to give Mr. West a strong look.

Whether Mr. West wants the job of vice president remains to be seen, but there is no debating that he has the conservative credentials, the vision and the wisdom to be second in command and someday, to be the commander in chief. He’s that great an American.

Mr. West is a bold, unapologetic, intelligent American with a clear vision for the country that is the opposite of the Obama administration’s wrongheaded, European-style vision.

A vice-presidential running mate does not typically make a difference in a presidential race, but Mr. West would obliterate that historical political paradigm. He’s a game-changer.

A Romney-West ticket would be a veritable juggernaut that would illuminate the vast chasms that separate them from the undynamic duo of President Obama and Vice President Joseph Biden.

While I deeply respect Mr. Rubio and believe he would make a strong running mate, I equally believe Mr. West would do us all proud as the next vice president of the United States. He is a leader, a patriot, a battle-tested veteran and is no doubt a shining star for the GOP and America.

Mitt Romney would be very wise to select Allen West to be his running mate.

Ted Nugent is an American rock ‘n’ roll, sporting and political activist icon. He is the author of “Ted, White, and Blue: The Nugent Manifesto” and “God, Guns & Rock ‘N’ Roll” (Regnery Publishing).

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