(CNN) - Sen. Rob Portman, who is close to GOP presidential nominee Mitt Romney and was a member of the congressional so-called "super committee" tasked with devising a deficit reduction plan, said Tuesday that the upcoming sequestration - a penalty and incentive for the two partisan sides to work together - has been ineffective and prevented accomplishing just such across-the-aisle cooperation.
"I think actually not having the sequester in place would have made it more likely that we could have come up with an agreement," the Ohio Republican said on CNN's "OutFront." "I don't think the sequester worked, and therefore I don't think it was a good idea."
(CNN) - Mitt Romney will begin preparations for this fall's series of presidential debates this week when he goes head-to-head with a stand-in for President Barack Obama, a Romney campaign source said Saturday.
Separately, Romney senior adviser Kevin Madden said Saturday that Romney will prepare Tuesday through Thursday at the Vermont house of former Massachusetts Lt. Gov. Kerry Healey.
The source also said that the campaign has not yet decided whether Romney will attend any public events this week.
(CNN) - Excerpts from the upcoming speeches of Sens. Rob Portman of Ohio and John Thune of South Dakota were released by the Republican National Convention on Wednesday.
Both were thought to be on the vice presidential short list for the party's presidential candidate, Mitt Romney.
Tampa, Florida (CNN) – Ohio Sen. Rob Portman has agreed to play the role of President Obama in debate prep sessions with Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney, two GOP sources tell CNN.
Portman, one of the Romney campaign's leading surrogates on the campaign trail and fundraising circuit, was approached by the campaign about the role earlier this summer and is being provided with briefing materials by top aides in Boston, one of the Republican sources told CNN.
(CNN) - Major political figures, including President Barack Obama and presumptive Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney, reacted on Saturday to the death of Neil Armstrong, the first man to walk on the moon.
President Barack Obama
"Michelle and I were deeply saddened to hear about the passing of Neil Armstrong. Neil was among the greatest of American heroes – not just of his time, but of all time. When he and his fellow crew members lifted off aboard Apollo 11 in 1969, they carried with them the aspirations of an entire nation. They set out to show the world that the American spirit can see beyond what seems unimaginable – that with enough drive and ingenuity, anything is possible. And when Neil stepped foot on the surface of the moon for the first time, he delivered a moment of human achievement that will never be forgotten.
"Today, Neil's spirit of discovery lives on in all the men and women who have devoted their lives to exploring the unknown – including those who are ensuring that we reach higher and go further in space. That legacy will endure – sparked by a man who taught us the enormous power of one small step."
(CNN) – A few of the "could have been" running mates for presumptive GOP nominee Mitt Romney were added to the list of speakers for this month's Republican National Convention Thursday, including Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal, Sen. Rob Portman of Ohio, Sen. Kelly Ayotte of New Hampshire and Virginia Gov. Bob McDonnell.
All four names were considered potential vice presidential picks for Romney, who on Saturday announced House Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan of Wisconsin as his running mate. Jindal campaigns for Romney Thursday in Virginia.
Oxford, Ohio (CNN) – A few days ago, Sen. Rob Portman was touted as being on the short list under consideration as Mitt Romney’s running mate. Despite being passed over when the nod went to Rep. Paul Ryan of Wisconsin, Portman was on hand and enthusiastic Wednesday at a GOP rally in Ohio featuring now-vice-presidential candidate Ryan.
Appearing together at Ryan’s alma mater - Miami University of Ohio - Portman praised the House Budget Committee chairman for his work on Capitol Hill and called him “a good friend.”
Gambier, Ohio (CNN) – Sen. Rob Portman, one of a select few on presumptive GOP nominee Mitt Romney's running mate short list, revealed to CNN on Saturday a private moment understood by few politicians: being told by a presidential candidate, "I've chosen someone else."
"I haven't talked to anybody about this yet," Portman said. "But I guess it's probably out there from … the Romney folks who said it."
(CNN) - They might be called the "almosts" - those thought or known to be on the short list considered by Mitt Romney for his number two spot.
Republican sources told CNN Chief National Correspondent John King that Sen. Rob Portman of Ohio, Sen. Marco Rubio of Florida, and former Gov. Tim Pawlenty of Minnesota - all thought to be on the candidate's short list - received calls from the Romney campaign prior to the announcement.
Editor's note: The 2012 presidential race is John King's seventh campaign. With presumptive Republican candidate Mitt Romney set to pick his running mate in the coming days, CNN's chief national correspondent looks at those believed to be in the running to be his potential vice president. On Friday, King profiles Wisconsin Congressman Paul Ryan.
SHELBY, Ohio (CNN) - At the edge of the Alt farm cornfield, Ohio Sen. Rob Portman gets a firsthand look at the impact of a punishing drought.
"These guys have crop insurance, which will cover most of their losses," Portman says of the Alt family, which has been farming this land since 1959. "But going forward, we need to prove predictability and certainty with a new farm bill."FULL STORY