ABC's Teddy Davis rounds up what we know already of McCain's health condition in The Note's "Sneak Peek."
Don't think any amount of records could quiet all the questions: "The records are unlikely to speak directly to the effects of his years as a prisoner of war," The Washington Post's David Brown reports. "McCain's years as a POW -- he was released in early 1973 -- constitute a distinctly unusual health variable among presidential aspirants."
Not everyone gets to read these open books: "After a long delay, John McCain's campaign plans to release the 71-year-old Republican's medical history in Phoenix today, but has decided to restrict access to the records to a small number of reporters," Maeve Reston writes in the Los Angeles Times.
Not a great tone for the media coverage: "As Americans kick off the first holiday weekend of the summer Friday, Sen. John McCain will release 400 pages of his medical records to a handpicked group of reporters who can neither photocopy nor keep the documents, illustrating the sensitivity the campaign places on the 71-year-old candidate's age and health," Joseph Curl writes in the Washington Times.
McCain has acknowledged that his age means more attention on his No. 2 -- and he gets that attention for some prospects with this weekend's "social" call, marking the unofficial start to veepstakes silliness.
"State Republican leaders across the country on Thursday gave a tentative nod of approval to those prospects [who will be at the ranch] while pointing to the possible suitability of others and emphasizing that Mr. McCain needed to please the party's conservative base," Julie Bosman reports in The New York Times.
"Many party officials said they could support those who will be meeting with Mr. McCain at his Arizona ranch: Gov. Charlie Crist of Florida, Gov. Bobby Jindal of Louisiana and former Gov. Mitt Romney of Massachusetts. But they also cited other possibilities, including Gov. Tim Pawlenty of Minnesota, former Gov. Mike Huckabee of Arkansas and Senator Lindsey Graham of South Carolina."
(Is being in Sedona good or bad for your prospects? Don't forget the dose of flattery that colors early veeps talk.)
How do GOP leaders feel about this possibility? Mayor Michael Bloomberg, I-N.Y., had breakfast with McCain last week. "A source close to the mayor informs me that the topic of McCain's V.P. search was very much on the menu," John Heilemann reports in New York Magazine. "One of the participants, in fact, came away from the conversation under the distinct impression that Bloomberg is on McCain's short list."
Dreaming of Democrats:
It must be infectious: Talk of No. 2 is spreading to the Democratic side. Jim Johnson is on board to head up Sen. Barack Obama's vetting team, and Obama scrambled the deck a bit by citing "Team of Rivals" as a potential example for his administration: "By the way, that does not exclude Republicans, either. The best person for the job is the person I would want."
You can put the potential candidates into roughly two categories: All natural-born American citizens age 35 or older, and Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton. And with Clinton, there's always another factor looming.