Post # 100, Bob McKnight's Subscription Commentary
A Ticket by Process of Elimination
Many political observers discount the people selected by Presidential nominees as their Vice Presidential running mates. The selections generally have few responsibilities if they win, and it is not uncommon for them to abandon their previous positions to pick up their bosses' positions. The running mate selection is many times an after thought of a campaign. But it can be fatal as former President George H.W. Bush found with Vice President Quayle in their re-election fight in 1992.
This year is different. If former Vice President Joe Biden of Deleware is the Democratic nominee, he will need a strong running mate to overcome his many short comings, as previously outlined in this Commentary. Perhaps the best way to look at who makes the most sense as his running mate is to lay out attributes sought:
1. Qualified to become President if necessary. A former member of Congress, a Governor or a Mayor of a major city would be ideal.
2. Smart and experienced at government. A lawyer or businessperson who has served in high office or offices, with distinction.
3. Presents a geographic balance with Biden from the Northeast, they would need running mates from the center or west in the country.
4. Comes from a state with a large electoral base.
5. Presents a gender or race balance to expand the draw of the ticket.
6. An effective campaigner, but with a no nonsense reputation of loyalty.
With these attributes, I believe two candidates, at least, qualify for running with Biden:
First, those that will be ruled out: Senators Warren and Sanders are both too far to the left and would hand the election to Trump. Mayor Buttigieg draws from the Obama alumni, except he has problems with the African American community, which is the most critical demographic for Biden. Mayor Bloomberg is a strong possibility if Biden stumbles, but really got started too late for the Democratic establishment support. It doesn't help that he is really an Independent candidate.
Who is left?
Senator Amy Klobuchar of Minnesota. She is respected in the Senate, and like Biden is a moderate. Senator Klobuchar would generate needed enthusiasm among Democratic suburban women who are still mad about gun control, the confirmation of Justice Kavanaugh , and abortion rights.
Senator Kamala Harris of California. She is from the largest state in the Union and is an African American woman, both major check offs for Biden. She is more liberal than Klobuchar and some feel she might have too much independence for Biden.
Barring surprises, one of these 2 will be on the Democratic ticket with Vice President Biden in November, 2020.