Senator Ayotte, for example, lacks the foreign policy experience that Romney's resume also omits. She's from a state that doesn't deliver many electoral votes, and she has very little name recognition on the national stage. She hails from the same geographic region as Romney (unless you consider Michigan his "home state"), and she doesn't have the cleanest record for her political career.
Let's take a journey down memory lane to my favorite campaign of recent memory - 2008's presidential run. Really what did Sarah Palin have to offer the GOP besides some far-fetched female support and appeal to very right-winged Republicans (besides an excellent first name)? Alaska has practically negligible electoral votes, and like Ayotte, she was also a no-name in the national political arena.
Should we be offended that debate over VP candidates seems to treat women's votes as a singular block? Or just amused by the simplicity of their thinking? Sure, Ayotte could be a more successful running mate than Palin was in 2008, but would she otherwise be considered if she were a man? I don't think so.
Photo Attribution: United States Congress via Wikimedia Commons