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March 8, 2004


Warm Bucket of Spit

Even with Bill Richardson out of the running for the Veep spot on the Kerry ticket, things aren't looking too good for John Edwards. Did anyone catch This Week with George Stephanopoulos this morning? A top Kerry adviser told George that the number one qualification for the vice-president would be the ability "to take over the Presidency at a moment's notice." If you were about to announce that Edwards, a first-term senator, was your choice, is this what you'd say to prepare everyone? Also working against Edwards:

  • He's a senator, too, and as Cokie said, one senator on a ticket is enough.
  • No one is sure if he could deliver North Carolina, let alone any other Southern state.
  • Although Kerry's backed off his assertion that they don't need the south to win, the real battleground states this year are in the north: Wisconsin, Minnesota, Ohio, etc. Can Edwards help Kerry there?
In his favor, despite some early stumbling, Edwards is reportedly terrific at connecting with voters, and could help Kerry with some of that. The other factor working in his favor, of course, is that everyone already knows who he is. Finally, as George Will pointed out, the last time the Democrats tried to run without a Southerner on the ticket, they lost 49 states.

So with Edwards, Richardson, and the Clintons out of the picture, who is it going to be? Richardson says he wants Gephardt on the ticket, but is that really going to excite anybody?

One shocking idea: How about John McCain?

McCain was on This Week and George asked him whether he would consider it. McCain's response was negative, but not as negative as Edwards' was just a month ago. McCain said, "I can't foresee any circumstances under which I would consider that," and added he didn't know why Kerry would choose a pro-life, pro-free trade, defense/deficit hawk as his running mate. But Stephanopoulos countered that Bush's attacks on McCain during the 2000 primaries were "savage" and that Bush and McCain differ on many issues (including the gay marriage amendment). McCain said he has since made up with Bush, and there are no hard feelings, though that's hard to believe. Regardless of his personal feelings, McCain has still ended up co-chairing the Bush campaign in Arizona. Wonder how much arm-twisting went into that one.

categories: Politics
posted by adm at 12:11 AM | #