In the past, Wikipedia activity has spiked for vice presidential picks the day before an official announcement was made. In 2008, hours before Republican candidate John McCain announced his vice presidential choice, Sarah Palin's Wikipedia page was getting a heavy edit. According to The Washington Post, the then-Alaska governor's page was changed 68 times the day before the announcement. In the 24 hours leading up to Obama's running mate announcement, Joe Biden's page was edited 40 times.
So I decided to take an updated look, heading into the weekend, at activity for "the Big Four" ostensible VP contenders.
Wikipedia modifications to VP contender biographies over the last week:
• Paul Ryan 96 changes
• Marco Rubio 83 changes
• Tim Pawlenty 34 changes
Wikipedia modifications to VP contender biographies over the last day:
• Paul Ryan 38 changes
• Rob Portman: 33 changes.
• Marco Rubio 24 changes
• Tim Pawlenty 11 changes
If recency is any indicator, it looks like Paul Ryan is coming on strong.
I can't imagine Rob Portman -- a pasty, boring white guy, affiliated with the Bush administration and who is largely unknown outside Washington -- as the VP candidate. Sorry, I just can't.
As for Tim Pawlenty: based on the stats, he looks like a non-entity when it comes to VP contender status. Which is as it should be. The guy dropped out of the GOP primary in what seemed to be about four days.
Marco Rubio or Paul Ryan would both make outstanding choices. Charisma. Principles. Brains. All of the things, in other words, lacking in Joe Biden.