Turns out searching Twitter handles may have been the best way to predict Mitt Romney's choice for vice president.
While many in the media delved into Wikipedia for clues as to Romney's running mate, a cursory Twitter search shows that newly announced vp candidate Paul Ryan's Twitter handle (@PaulRyanVP) was created only a few days ago—Aug. 2, to be exact. Interestingly enough, using the same FirstLastVP nomenclature, accounts for TimPawlentyVP and MarcoRubioVP were also made on the same day (Aug. 2). Perhaps the move was to throw the media off the scent, but since searches for BobbyJindalVP and ChrisChristieVP turned up no results, there is a possibility that as of Aug. 2, Ryan, Pawlenty and Rubio were all still in play. There is, of course, also the possibility that the creation of the handles is a coincidence, but that appears unlikely.
As expected, once the news broke in the early hours of Saturday morning, Twitter erupted with an astounding 865 tweets per minute around 1:10 a.m. EST, according to the official @gov Twitter account. As morning rolled around, tweets peaked as Romney officially announced his running mate around 9:29 a.m. EST, at a rate of 3,749 tweets per minute.
According to Topsy's Twitter analytics, mentions of Paul Ryan have cooled down considerably since 9:45 a.m. EST, when the keywords Paul Ryan were mentioned over 45,000 times. As of 2:45 p.m. EST on Saturday, mentions for the keywords Paul Ryan were down to around 14,000. It is important to remember that the figure reflects the number of mentions for the keywords Paul Ryan in that particular minute, so the frequency, while much lower, is still very impressive.