With all due respect to those suggesting that Florida Gov. Rick Scott is a logical choice to be Donald Trump's running mate, that idea is utter nonsense.
Speculation is inevitable given that Trump is close to securing the Republican presidential nomination and Florida is a must-win for the GOP nominee.
But Vice President Rick Scott? No way.
There may be worse choices for Trump, but I struggle to think of many.
Perhaps someone from Trump world is floating this notion with an eye toward playing Scott for an endorsement the way John McCain had then-Republican Gov. Charlie Crist practically throwing himself at McCain in 2008. I don't know.
Jeb Bush is widely expected to endorse Marco Rubio to help thwart Trump. Scott is less predictable, however.
The governor in a January USA Today column came just shy of endorsing Trump, praising him as a fellow outsider focused on improving the economy. Quite a few Republicans expect Scott to make his support more explicit before Florida's March 15 primary, even though many conservatives (including Scott's main political adviser, Curt Anderson of Maryland) vehemently oppose Trump.
Florida's governor endorsing Trump would be a giant symbolic smackdown for Rubio, whose campaign probably can't survive a Florida primary loss. It also would make the governor's already weak relationship with the Legislature even rockier, but help Scott reclaim the outsider, anti-establishment image that helped him win the governor's office in the first place.
But a Scott endorsement of Trump would not land Scott on Trump's ticket. Just ask yourself what putting Scott on the ticket gets Trump.
Help governing, getting his agenda through Washington? Nope. Scott has almost no experience with Washington. Florida's governor is consistently clumsy dealing with the Republican-controlled Florida Legislature, so there's no reason to think he'd be especially helpful to Trump dealing with Congress.
Help carrying Florida? Hard to see it. As of November, Scott was the eighth-least popular governor in America, according to a monthslong survey of more than 76,000 voters in all 50 states about their governors by Morning Consult. He narrowly won two elections by dramatically outspending his Democratic opponents and riding big Republican waves in off-year elections with low Democratic turnout.
A high-turnout presidential election is an entirely different ballgame. Putting Scott one heartbeat away from the presidency would give ambivalent voters a reason to vote against Trump the same way Sarah Palin turned off swing voters from McCain in 2008. Scott would likely hurt Trump in Florida, not help him.
A strong surrogate/attack dog for Trump? The late Florida GOP chairman Tom Slade summed up Scott's lack of political skill succinctly in 2012: "I'd give him a B for governing. I'd give him an A for strangeness." A nice fellow in person, Scott is one of the most awkward politicians who ever set foot on Florida's political scene. He is also far more robotic in bizarrely repeating talking points over and over than Rubio is on his worst imaginable day.
And if Trump opponents think controversy over Trump University is a strong line of attack not yet fully exploited, wait until they dig into Scott's business background. He became immensely wealthy leading the hospital chain Columbia/HCA that paid the largest Medicare fraud settlement in U.S. history 13 years ago.
Scott overcame that baggage in part by spending tens of millions of dollars on TV ads to make his rivals look at least as scandal-tainted, but TV ads are much less effective in a presidential race than a statewide Florida race.
Yes, Scott likely would put an exclamation point on Trump's outsider status, but that's not what Trump would need as the nominee. Trump needs someone to reassure millions of voters uncomfortable with his temperament and ability to get anything done. That is not Rick Scott.
John Kasich comes to mind.
Adam. C. Smith, the political editor at the Tampa Bay Times, can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow adamsmithtimes.