By Gregory Simmons and Alex Marquardt
Sen. Rob Portman, R-Ohio, will meet with both Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Defense Minister Ehud Barak Thursday in Israel. Israeli officials confirmed the meeting to ABC News Tuesday.
This high-profile meeting with a key foreign leader comes at time when Portman is considered to be among the top-tier candidates of potential running-mates for presumptive republican nominee Mitt Romney.
While international travel is not new for the Ohio Senator, having served as US Trade Representative under George H W Bush, he is better known for his domestic resume. Portman served seven terms as a congressman and also as Director of the Office of Management and Budget under George W Bush. He currently sits on the Senate Armed Services Committee, a seat he has held since 2011.
The Israeli official was unaware of speculation about Portman’s reported place on Romney’s shortlist and highlighted that Netanyahu makes every effort to meet visiting American politicians.