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Everyone Hearts Mitt Romney

11:57 AM, Jul 1, 2008 • By JAIME SNEIDER
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Only days after I endorsed Mitt Romney for VP, a chorus of political insiders are singing the same tune. Two important questions remain about Romney's utility to the McCain campaign. First, what good is the money Mitt Romney raises if McCain remains in the public financing system? Second, can Romney contribute personally?

I posed these questions to Brad Smith, a former commissioner of the FEC. He tells me any money McCain raises can be spent on advertising and expenses incurred before the time he becomes the official nominee. That only happens at the Republican convention in September, so if Romney raises $60 million in the mean time, television airwaves will be flush with McCain ads all summer long. As an aside, friends on the McCain campaign tell me Romney is already busting his butt bundling checks.

With respect to Romney giving money, Smith says, he'll be capped at $50,000 under the campaign finance laws once he is the vice presidential nominee. And before that time, he's capped like everyone else, but can make unlimited independent expenditures.