Donald Trump says he will name his running mate before the GOP convention, two weeks from now, in Cleveland. Then, there’s what’s-her-name, running against him. Whenever Trump’s around, he sucks all the air out of the room. But let’s take a look at Hillary Clinton’s options, anyway.
As we noted elsewhere, if Hillary were to pick Elizabeth Warren, Sherrod Brown, or Corey Booker, she’d be giving the Republican governor in those states the chance to pick his or her replacement, making it harder for Dems to take back the Senate—making her job as president harder.
We’ve also heard that many prospects, such as Marco Rubio, Scott Walker, and John Kasich say they would not accept the second-spot with Trump. On the Dem side, does it really matter whom she chooses? The New York Times says no.
Here’s what we journalists don’t like to tell you or even admit to ourselves as we furiously stir the speculation, breathlessly thicken the suspense and whet Americans’ appetites for the big reveal of who will round out the Democratic and Republican tickets: Its impact on the election is close to nonexistent.
That’s particularly true this time around, and especially so with Clinton.
She can veer to the left, tack to the center, go for sizzle, settle for steadiness. She has all the wiggle room in the world. Seldom in a modern presidential campaign has the selection of a running mate mattered as little as it does for her.
She has been on Americans’ TV screens and in their brains for so long now that she’s like email or A.T.M.s: It’s hard to remember daily life before her. Opinions of her are fixed. Emotions are ossified. Her running mate won’t be some fresh lens through which voters notice new shadings and dimensions of her. There’s no sudden swoon for her around the bend, no fresh disenchantment in the offing.
Certainly, Warren stirs up progressives (aka, “liberals”), but would she cooperate?
“Every bit of evidence about Elizabeth Warren is that she’ll go indie [“rogue”]when she feels she needs to,” said Doug Schoen, a pollster and strategist who has advised Bill Clinton and Mike Bloomberg, referring to Warren’s carefully maintained identity as someone who doesn’t back down. If Clinton ran with her and won, “The day that Warren says, ‘I cannot support this trade deal’ that Clinton has decided to endorse, the administration is over.”
So will anyone care whom Hillary picks?
I pushed back at various political strategists: Surely the veep pick is a consequential moment?
“To the media, yes,” said Schoen. “To the voters, no. Remember Dan Quayle? Spiro Agnew?” They were the ankle weights on, respectively, the first President Bush and the only President Nixon, both of whom loped to victory regardless. . .
Really they’re just garnishes — in Clinton’s case, a mere sprig of parsley.
CNBC is asking readers to choose.
After holding off a strong challenge from Bernie Sanders during the presidential primaries, Hillary Clinton is the presumptive nominee of the Democratic Party for the 2016 election.
As the campaign heads into the party’s convention in Philadelphia at the end of July, which potential running mate will Clinton choose to help combat Donald Trump and try to lift the overall ticket in November?
Tell us whom you think Hillary should and shouldn’t pick.
That site raised the question just a few days ago, but it has received many thousands of responses. Readers were given the option of voting for the prospect they want—and don’t want, so each prospect has two numbers, plus and minus. Here’s their list:
1. Elizabeth Warren, 3.5k for, 2.5k against
2. Tim Kaine, 2.4k for, 2k against
3. Bernie Sanders, 2.1k for, 2.6k against
4. Julian Castro, 1.5k for, and 2.3 against
5. Joe Biden, 1.5k for, 2.5k against
6. Corey Booker, 1.5k for, 2.3k against
7. Sherrod Brown, 1.1k for, 2.2k against
8. Al Franken, 1.2k for, 2.4k against
9. Xavier Becerra, 545 for, 2.4k against
10. John Kickenlooper, 570 plus, 2.4k against
11. Tom Perez, 5.3 plus, 2.4k against
12. Tom Vilsack, 482 plus, 2.4k against
Meanwhile, here’s the list that gamblers are betting on, according to ElectionBettingOdds. Remember, the gamble is that if you bet a dollar on Tim Kaine, you’ll get $3 back if he is picked, and if you bet a dollar on Patrick, you’ll get about $100 back if he is picked.
1. Tim Kaine, 33.5% chance of being chosen
2. Elizabeth Warren, 20.5%
3. Julian Castro, 10.9%
4. Tom Perez, 7%
5. Corey Booker, 6.5%
6. Sherrod Brown, 6%
7. Bernie Sanders, 4.6%
8. Al Franken, 2.7%
9. Evan Bayh, 2.5%
10. Mark Warner, 1.5%
11. Devol Patrick, 1.1%
While it has been shown, statistically, that no vice presidential candidate since LBJ has assured carrying their home state, the choice is more about personality. Generally, the running mate is expected to be the “bulldog,” allowing the top of the ticket to look “presidential.” That would very much help Hillary, who is already seen as grating, even without sounding negative.
On the GOP side, there’s no way to keep Trump from going for the jugular, so he really just needs someone like Newt Gingrich, to act as a “professional politician,” a solid conservative, and someone who could be relied upon to work with Congress. And Trump has repeatedly said that is his goal—to “negotiate,” not stand on principle.
Trump has said he will name his veep choice before the GOP convention. That will allow Hillary up to two weeks to see who it is, and how the public reacts. She can then “counter-program” a choice who can stand up to the GOP running mate.