With GOP presidential hopeful Mitt Romney traveling abroad, his campaign is deploying a bevy of surrogates—including possible vice presidential pick Rob Portman — on the campaign trial in the coming week.
Sen. Portman, R-Ohio, said he will be going to a meeting with Romney’s Ohio volunteers and campaign staff in Columbus on Saturday. And on Monday, he’s going to stump in Pennsylvania for the GOP ticket.
Portman told reporters Thursday that said he didn’t know the details of his appearance in Pennsylvania yet, adding that the schedule was still being worked out.
NBC News’s political blog first reported Portman’s trip to Pennsylvania. That outlet also says that other possible VP candidates are also fanning out to key states for Romney, who is in London for the opening of the Olympic Games.
On his weekly call with Ohio reporters, Portman also highlighted new legislation he introduced this week aimed at preventing the perennial brinksmanship that comes every fall, when Congress fails to pass the federal spending bills. That inevitably results in a last-minute deal on a mega-appropriations bill, which often passes in the wee hours with little debate or scrutiny.
Portman’s bill, called the End Government Shutdowns Act, would automatically continue funding federal programs are existing levels, if lawmakers fail to enact new spending bills. But after 120 days, funding would be cut across the board by 1 percent and then by another 1 percent every 90 days after that.
Portman said the cuts would provide an incentive for lawmakers to keep working on a spending agreement, without being under the threat of a government shutdown.
“It ensures the federal government will provide (essential) services, while protecting against the panic and pressure you have against last-minute budget deals,” Portman said.
With Congress currently hurtling toward another fall deadline, there will almost certainly be another showdown at the end of this fiscal year—Sept. 30. But it’s unclear whether Congress—which remains deadlocked over a bevy of other issues, from the farm bill to taxes—could agree on Portman’s proposed solution.
Read more: http://cincinnati.com/blogs/politics/2012/07/26/portman-to-hit-campaigns-trail-for-romney-again/