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Veepstakes: Attacks on Portman start

AYOTTE: Kelly Ayotte makes The Hill’s 50 Most Beautiful list.

CHRISTIE: Cross him off the veepstakes? First, NBC’s Jamie Gangel reported that Christie would be keynote speaker at the Republican National Convention, now he says he’s open to a 2016 presidential bid: "If there's an opportunity for me to serve in another capacity and I think I have something to add to the mix, I don't think I'd back away from it,” he told AP.

PORTMAN: “Sen. Rob Portman (R-Ohio) on Wednesday introduced a bill aimed at ending the threat of a government shutdown once and for all,” The Hill writes. “The bill would automatically extend government spending at current levels for 120 days when funding expires. If Congress continues to fail to act, spending would be cut by 1 percent across the board every 90 days.”

“Prospective VP candidate for Mitt Romney, Rob Portman, is under criticism by Democrats for advice to George W. Bush that resulted in damaging the U.S. steel industry. His advice is linked to sales declines and job losses. His defense is that Bush did better for steel than Clinton,” the Washington Examiner writes.