OAK CREEK, WI — As speculation over whom Mitt Romney might choose as a running mate reaches a fever pitch, one of the Republicans rumored to be on the short list — Wisconsin Rep. Paul Ryan — is going on vacation.
Ryan told reporters here that he is taking his family to Colorado, beginning Saturday, for a weeklong trip during the summer congressional recess.
"I'm just doing my August schedule as I planned my August," Ryan said, adding that he will first spend the next two days campaigning in Northwest Wisconsin for local candidates.
Friday, Ryan said he will spend the day in his native Janesville preparing for his trip by getting his tent and backpack ready.
Meanwhile, speculation has grown surrounding just when Romney will name his No. 2 has grown; some believe it could come as early as this week. That, presumably, would take Ryan out of the equation if he maintains his current schedule and heads to Colorado.
Ohio Sen. Rob Portman and former Minnesota Gov. Tim Pawlenty, who are seen as the other top VP contenders, are campaigning for Romney this week. Portman has five events Wednesday in Colorado while Pawlenty has scheduled events in Michigan and New Hampshire through the end of the week. Romney kicks off a four day, four state bus tour on Saturday.
While Ryan's name has been mentioned more and more in the past few days, the congressman brushed that off.
"I think that's just because of the convention. Its volume," he said while greeting folks at Oak Creek's National Night Out event.
Ryan commonly refuses to discuss his VP chances — as he did tonight when a constituent asked him about it — but said Tuesday night he will definitely attend the GOP convention in Tampa.
"Scott [Walker], our governor, we're doing a beer and brats thing," the congressman said, adding that he wasn't sure whether he would have a speaking position at the convention.
"My staff has talked to Reince [Priebus]. I haven't talked to Reince," Ryan said of the Republican National Committee chairman and fellow Wisconsinite."I haven't talked to Reince in awhile."
Ryan was scheduled to speak at a vigil later Tuesday night to honor the victims of the shooting at the Sikh Temple Sunday in his district.