OK, I’ll give my first try at predictions on Murph Says. With the primaries apparently narrowing to two candidates on both sides there is speculation on Vice Presidential nominees for each contender.
McCain: It is probable that Guiliani will drop out and endorse McCain – some see a VP nomination for Rudy in that. Very unlikely, although I wouldn’t write off a promise of AG. Huckabee would be a possibility, to salve the social conservatives, but I see that also as unlikely as he has a problem with economic conservatives that would parallel McCain. Were I to choose my own favorite it would be the newly “independent” Sen. Lieberman, but that wouldn’t fly with the social conservatives either (and I think Lieberman would prefer his independent voice in the Senate – although I wouldn’t rule out Scty of Defense). McCain’s choice must not be anathema to independents and “Reagan Democrats”, but need not be a pull to them either as McCain has his own pull there. Romney is out, the public antipathy between them is too great. A side bar, that hasn’t prevented pairings in the past, JFK and LBJ ran together – but things were a bit less public then. I think McCain would choose “none of the above” – perhaps someone like Bill Frist, or another who has been out of the public eye for a while but would be quickly remembered. Fred Thompson might be a good running mate, but I think not as McCain has the age, and Thompson gives the impression of being aged.
Clinton: The Clinton/Obama ticket could sound like a dream one for the Democrats, and as a Republican I hope it doesn’t happen. I doubt, however, that it will happen. I can’t see Obama accepting the job as he is young and has time to go for the top prize again on his own – even if it is sixteen years from now (the unlikely scenario of two Hillary terms and then two Republican terms). I also can’t see Hillary inviting Obama for the job, his charisma would overshadow her. Richardson is a good possibility. Forget Edwards (unless there is a cynical deal in a “brokered” convention for his delegates – he wouldn’t be a good balance for her ticket). Joe Biden? No, Sen. Clinton doesn’t need another “foot in the mouth” helper, Bill is enough <g>. But may I say that I have respect for Biden when he isn’t talking for the cameras. I’m not sure that Bayh or other non-controversial Senators would choose to run.
Romney: This is not a prediction, I’m not sure if Romney has the political sense, but how about Michael Steele? A black conservative who is currently a Republican “factotum” (head of GOPPAC?) and who ran a close race for Governor of (Virginia?). I have listened to the man a great deal, he is clear in his analysis of politics, and of national and international events. (I confess that I watch the various programs on Fox News and my favorite analysts are Steele and Kirsten Powers – from the Democratic side – they both see the positives and the shortfallings of their respective parties). A Romney/McCain ticket might be a Republican dream (like the Clinton/Obama for the Democrats) but it will never happen – McCain will see more value to remaining in the Senate (and by value I mean value to the country). I really have difficulty calling a good bet for Romney’s VP – it will either be one of the early candidates or some nationally known name, I don’t think Fred Thompson would run with him, and I don’t think that would be a good pairing. Romney has a basic problem as a campaigner – he was brought up a gentleman. His attack dog campaign has been a bit inept as he doesn’t know how to do it. It is difficult for one not brought up “in the trenches” to come off well on the attack – Hillary has the same problem. As one who has both been brought up as a gentleman and one who has lived “on the streets” I sympathized with them, but they both needed a bit more time in the neighborhood saloon.
Obama: He has an almost open field for VP selection, as long as it is an older and respected moderate. Bayh would be a good choice. I can think of a number of possibilities, so I’ll not spend as much time with him as the others. He needs a moderate to bring in independents, but he has already a call on them. Being conservative myself (call it a Rockefeller Republican – and we still exist even if some Conservatives forget us), I would prefer an Obama Presidency to a Clinton one. He is far to callow a youthful Liberal for me, but a liberal person has an open mind. I voted for JFK (my first Presidential vote) over RMN – I thought JFK would do nothing, and RMN would do the wrong thing. I was wrong. But that is for another essay.