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Tipsheet

Virginia: Romney: 48, Obama: 43

A new poll out today shows presumptive Republican nominee Mitt Romney leading President Obama by five percentage points in the Old Dominion:

In a We Ask America survey of registered voters, Romney leads the president 48 percent to 43 in Virginia, with 9 percent of respondents still undecided on whom they will vote for in the fall. That's the president's worst showing in Virginia this month; every other poll released in June showed Obama either tied with or leading Romney.

The discrepancy could be explained by the polling firm's house effect — a recent study by the New York Times's Nate Silver found We Ask America generally leaned Republican in its polls — or represent a shift in momentum for Romney. The presumptive Republican candidate is campaigning in the Old Dominion on Tuesday and Wednesday.

The poll also showed a strong lead for former Sen. George Allen (R-Va.) in his quest to retake his Senate seat against former Gov. Tim Kaine. Allen held a 9-point lead, taking 44 percent of registered voters to Kaine's 35.

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In other words, yes, this is great news, but it should be taken with a grain of salt. Ed Morrissey over at Hot Air suggests the survey is probably an outlier for two basic reasons. (1) The WAM pollsters have a tendency to overestimate election results and (2) George Allen’s enormous lead over Tim Kaine seems highly unusual -- after all, virtually every other survey conducted in the state shows the candidates locked in a statistical dead heat. Again, it’s June. These numbers will rise and fall a lot over the next several months. However, there is one way Mitt Romney can nudge Virginia towards the GOP column in 2012: Choosing Bob McDonnell as his running mate, of course! Speaking of which:

The Virginia governor indicated on Tuesday the Mitt Romney camp might be considering him for vice president.

Gov. Bob McDonnell shifted from his usual response when questioned about a potential vice presidential bid while speaking on WTOP's "Ask the Governor." He had previously indicated he was not actively seeking the position, but might consider it if asked.

On Tuesday, he told WTOP he would not comment now that Romn:ey is openly vetting candidates, such as Sen. Marco Rubio, R-Fla., a Tea Party favorite.

"I'm not discussing the vice presidential vetting process," said McDonnell, the governor of the nation's top state for business, according to a 2011 study. "You can address those questions to the Romney campaign."

The change in tone indicates he might soon become one of the other public figures Romney is now openly vetting for the position.

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All parties are remaining mum on the subject, naturally. But choosing Governor McDonnell as Mitt Romney’s number two is perhaps the surest -- and safest -- path to victory in Virginia and beyond next November.

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