August 11, 2008

The VP game

Pundits and political junkies been playing one of their favorite parlor games for months, namely, trying to guess who the presidential nominees will pick to be their running mates.

Prior to now, it was a rather silly exercise, but the announcements will be coming shortly from both campaigns, so speculation now isn't as idle.

I only have a couple thoughts on the matter of Obama's pick.

First of all, I sincerely hope he doesn't pick Mr. Milktoast himself, Evan Bayh of Indiana. The fact he's consistently mentioned in the top 3 likely picks scares me.

First of all, the guy is a solid DLC "Republican Light" sort, and therefore lives by their golden rule, "Though shalt never say anything too tough about a Republican."

The guy is about as exciting as watching paint dry, and it's simply inconceivable that he'd be effective at taking swipes at the Republican ticket, an ability which I feel is absolutely crucial for any running mate of Obama.

Obama isn't a natural fighter either, and to have someone who's even MORE bland and adverse to fighting fire with fire would be disasterous.

One lesson the Dems should have learned well is that the American people do NOT like candidates who don't seem able, willing, or capable of defending themselves and standing up for themselves. It's not so important what they believe in, but we need squishy, nowhere candidates like a hole in the head.

A much better choice would be Joe Biden, as he's perfectly willing, and very capable, of standing up to Republican attacks and nonsense in a straightforward, yet unoffensive manner. Bayh? Someone could accuse him of having a gay affair with bin Laden and he'd first say that while he respects their views, he'd have to take exception to that characterization.

I hope that nightmare doesn't happen.

I was really dejected when Jim Webb essentially took himself out of the running for VP. I think he would have been ideal for several reasons, primarily because, like Biden, Webb doesn't take crap from anyone, and can handle himself in a knife fight with skill. He'd be a great asset in that department, as well as lending Obama his sterling credentials as a military and foreign affairs authority, something which would go a long way to knocking down McCain's only perceived strength. And not only that, he might be expected to help Obama's chances in the crucial state of Virginia.

That said, there's always Hillary. A bigger shock I can not imagine, but then again, I think that all and all, she'd be a net plus for the ticket. But again, I can't imagine that happening.

McCain's pick? I'm guessing it will probably be the Ken Doll Romney, in light of how Republicans seem to make their picks. McCain may rather have bamboo shoots shoved under his fingernails than have Romney as VP, but then again, McCain has already demonstrated repeatedly that when it comes to getting into the White House, there's no principle he won't gladly toss in the trash, no personal beliefs he won't gladly compromise or utterly reverse if he thinks it will help his chances.

There's other candidates being talked about, primarily on the Republcan side, and they're all safely in the catagory of "Who??", unknowns for all intents and purposes. Pawlenty, and for a second, that weirdo Bob Jindal. Then there's old Tom Ridge, which would probably be a smart pick for the white-haird dude.

On the Dem side, the chattering class keeps talking about Virginia gov Tim Kaine, though I don't understand how he's considered a good choice.

Don't know if you've given it much thought, but answer these two questions: Who do you think Obama SHOULD pick? (and why.) And who do you think he WILL pick? (and why.)

Same for McCain if you're so inclined.


At 8/11/2008 2:37 PM, Blogger tiz said...

I think Obama's campaign has done an excellent job of keeping everyone on their toes. I thought last week it was going to be Bayh (and I was less than thrilled for the same reasons you appear to be). It's looking like it's down to Bayh, Biden, and Sebelius. Hillary isn't going to happen - putting her in the Tuesday slot at the convention put an end to that for good. I think Kaine and Romney both are getting mentioned as a courtesy (Kaine for help in VA, Romney for his fund raising).

I'd be happy with Biden or Sebelius. Unlike Bayh, Sebelius was able to get elected in a red state without selling her soul to the DLC. She can deal with the worst the GOP can muster because she has dealt with it at home. If I wanted a political role model for my daughter I would point to Sebelius or Janet Nepolitano long before anyone else. She's likely to not give us Kansas, but she's from Ohio (her father was a governor) so we might see a bump there with her.

I like Biden for many of the same reasons you give. One thing I would worry about is him running his mouth too much (remember the "clean" comment?). I could see Biden wielding more power where he's at now too and not really wanting the #2 slot.

If forced at gun point I'd say I want Obama to pick Sebelius but I have no clue who I think they'll pick.

I want McCain to pick Romney just because I've always disliked Romney (and my wife would stop calling me a hypocrite for disliking McCain now) and I think he would be a doormat for anyone in a VP debate. It's likely to be Pawlenty though. Jindal would throw off any message of experience meaning a lot and some of the sneaker crap they'll try (he's brown and different, these are things you know will get used against Obama). Tom Ridge is too liberal for most Republicans (at least that's what my Republican friends tell me - they also said McCain is too liberal so maybe that doesn't mean anything now).

At 8/11/2008 9:16 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

McCain take Hillary
Obama take Powell
Jets take Favre

At 8/12/2008 9:45 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Obama will take a red-state Dem who can help him win the State. There is no VP that is going to help him in any other way. Obama is on a downward path and no VP candidate can save him from himself, and his overexposure.

McCain - other than Lieberman, who cares? If not Lieberman, he'll take a VP that helps win a State - either Michigan or Ohio.

At 8/12/2008 9:34 PM, Blogger The Inside Dope said...

Anon 9:45.

Yep, it's the kiss of death for a politician to get a ton of publicity.

Good God, where do you come up with this stuff?

Oh yeah, Fox.

And McCain/Leiberman?

Yes, yes, YES!! If there's a God, that'll be the ticket.

Lieberman deserves to go down in history as the kiss of death for TWO tickets from both parties. God would that be just too delicious!!

OH please, please, PLEASE!

At 8/12/2008 10:57 PM, Blogger tiz said...

Who the hell can McCain take that will give him Michigan? Romney? Dems had 70% turnout compared to Republicans in the primary there - this with a Dem primary that everyone and their dog knew wouldn't count. The UAW in Michigan didn't endorse Obama until June. Romney's native son act won't work this time around in Michigan.

As for Ohio I'm guessing you're alluding to Portman? I'm willing to roll the dice there. This is a state that kicked Mike DeWine - who isn't *horrible* for a Republican - to the curb 2 years ago.

Ridge and Pawlenty are the only VP picks for McCain that could throw a state over to the GOP.

At 8/13/2008 6:51 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Too much exposure - when you have built your popularity off of stardom - is indeed a bad thing.

Too much exposure when you say stupid things like -

"The Surge did not work"
"Inflate your tires"
-is indeed a bad thing.

How else does one explain the fact that after a 10-day trip to the Middle east, with all 3-anchors, and being the lead story for 10-days, his poll number actually go DOWN!?

Too much exposure to a house-of-cards candidate.

At 8/13/2008 9:39 PM, Blogger The Inside Dope said...

This game has been given new life by the announcement that Virginia's former Gov and shoo-in for senator Mark Warner is being given the keynote speaking slot at the Dem convention.

Of course, this doesn't clear up anything or make Obama's choice any more or less clear, but the pundits have immediately said that this means Warner is more likely to be the pick. Unless of course it means that Warner is definitely not going to be the pick.
Unless it means that Tim Kaine is now definitely out of the running. Unless it means that Kaine is more likely... Or..... it all means that Biden is now the sure pick... or .. well, you get the picture.

I'm glad to hear Warner is being given a plum spot, and I'd love if he was VP... but don't think it will happen.

And I'd be happy with Biden too.

ANYbody but Bayh. Yeech!

At 8/13/2008 9:45 PM, Blogger The Inside Dope said...

Anon 9:39.

Your stupidity sir, and your apparent pride in it, is what's stupid.

Care to explain what's wrong with properly inflating your tires in order to increase you gas milage 3-4% ?

Care to explain why you apparently think it's silly to propose something that our own government says could save an amount of oil larger than that expected to be found through off-shore drilling?

Care to explain why you think it's a virtue to be an idiot and mock common sense practices?

Tell us, just why are you proud of your ignorance?

While you mock a measure which could save literally hundreds of thousands of barrels of foreign oil, you instead support a phony ridiciulous scam that calls for off-shore drilling.

Something which:

A. Won't produce a drop of oil for about 10 years.

B. Taps into such a miniscule fraction of a percent of the oil supply that it would be a miracle if, even when it enters the market far in the future, it affects the price of a gallon of gas more than a cent or two.

Proud of trying to peddle such a patently dumb-ass proposal like that?

Why do you take pride in displaying your rank ignorance? Why do you scoff at things that DO work while supporting things that don't?


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