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Veepstakes Line: It's Now or Never?

The excitement over the veepstakes reached critical mass this week -- sparked by conservative columnist Bob Novak's report that John McCain could make his pick as early as this week.

VP Watch

(A side note: The Fix is currently reading Novak's memoir entitled "Prince of Darkness". If you care about the nexus of politics and journalism over the last four decades or so, it is a must-read).

With Friday already upon us, it doesn't look like Novak's reporting is going to bear out but the chatter does seem to suggest McCain's pick will come sooner rather than later.

As the Post's Mike Shear and Robert Barnes write in today's paper:

"Two top aides to the presumptive Republican nominee said the decision is likely to be announced after Obama returns from Europe on Sunday and before the Beijing Olympics begin Aug. 8. They said the campaign fears that unanticipated events coming out of China -- whether in the form of athletic accomplishments or human rights protests -- could deflect attention from the announcement if it were made during the Games."

From The Fix's own reporting, it's clear that McCain is deeply involved in the selection process and has narrowed his choices to a handful of candidates -- several of which have been doing their best to try out (without appearing as though they are trying out) for the job over the last few weeks.

The key for McCain in terms of timing is to avoid looking reactive to Obama and thus reinforcing the idea that Obama is the prime mover in the contest. A pick in early August -- aside from complicating the Fix's much-anticipated trip to Argentina -- would make sense in that it would allow McCain a few days of wall to wall coverage heading into the Olympics, which start on Aug. 8.

With speculation on the timing and identity of the vice presidential picks, we offer our latest and greatest rankings of the five most likely choices for McCain and Barack Obama below.

As always the Line is meant as a conversation starter so feel free to agree or disagree in the comments section.

To the Line (part deux)!

REPUBLICANS

5. Bobby Jindal: The news that McCain was set to travel to New Orleans earlier this week to meet with Jindal (a trip that was later canceled), set off a new round of speculation about whether the youthful Louisiana governor was the pick. Our sense is that Jindal is more likely headed to the keynote address at the Republican National Convention than to a spot on the ticket. Picking the 37 year old Jindal would force McCain to walk away from attacks on Obama's experience; he's in no position in the race to do that. (Previous ranking: N/A)

4. John Thune: The South Dakota Senator remains very much in the mix although he gets far less attention from the national media than either Romney or Pawlenty. That may actually accrue to Thune's benefit as often the candidate who campaign the least for the job winds up being the pick (see Cheney, Dick). One other interesting note on Thune: He predicted less than a week ago that McCain wouldn't make his veep pick until after Obama makes his selection. Does he know something we don't? (Previous ranking: 4)

Portman

3. Rob Portman: If the inside the Beltway crowd picked McCain's vice president, Portman would be the guy. Beloved by the Republican chattering class, Portman has much to recommend him: he hails from the swing state of Ohio, can speak intelligently about economics as the former director of the Office of Management and Budget, and is seen as eminently capable of stepping in to the presidency at a moment's notice. But, does McCain want to pick someone with deep ties to Washington in a year where voters are clearly dissatisfied with the nation's capitol and his opponent is running as an outsider? (Previous ranking: 3)

Pawlenty

2. Tim Pawlenty: Tpaw is the hot candidate this week with reports coming out of both Minnesota and Washington that things are looking good for the governor. And yet, when The Fix probed a bit deeper to find out what was behind the optimism, the best we came up with is that Pawlenty's body language has been very positive over the past few days. That's pretty thin gruel. Pawlenty, more so than any other politician on the Line, keeps his own political counsel so be wary of reports of what he knows or thinks he knows about his standing in the veepstakes. (Previous ranking: 2)

Romney

1. Mitt Romney: Our guess is that McCain is in the process of figuring out whether he can live with sharing the ticket with Romney. On paper, Romney makes the most sense for McCain's second-in-command. He helps McCain geographically (Michigan and New Hampshire), on issues (the economy is Romney's strong suit) and financially (Romney may well be the most able fundraiser in the Republican party at the moment). But, McCain is a politician who often goes on instinct and his personal feelings (or lack thereof) for Romney might well make the difference. (Previous ranking: 1)

DEMOCRATS

Sebelius

5. Kathleen Sebelius: Buzz around the Kansas governor has dissipated over the last few weeks. Our sense is the deflation of the Sebelius balloon has more to do with the fact that picking her would be seen as a poke in the eye to backers of Hillary Rodham Clinton than with anything the Kansas governor has done. (You can imagine the outraged comments; "So he wanted to pick a woman but Hillary wasn't good enough?") Obama clearly has warm feelings for Sebelius but at the moment she seems more likely to wind up in his Cabinet if he wins than on the ticket as the Illinois Senator's vice president. (Previous ranking: 4)

4. Jack Reed: The Rhode Island Senator was much in the news this week as he stood side by side with Obama during an official trip to Afghanistan and Iraq. And, Reed has unassailable military credentials -- West Point graduate, active member of the Army for nearly a decade, a seat on the Senate Armed Service committee -- and a personal rapport with Obama. But, is the Rhode Island Senator "big" enough to complement Obama on the national stage? (Previous ranking: 3)

Biden

3. Joe Biden: Biden moves up the Line as reports continue to trickle out of Obama's world that the Delaware Senator is under serious consideration. Biden has been a leading voice for Democrats on foreign policy matters for decades and proved that he still has considerable charisma on the stump during his own bid for the presidency earlier this year. Another Biden benefit? He was born in Scranton, Pennsylvania and for years has been running television ads in the Philadelphia media market -- making him a major presence in a state that could decide the presidency in the fall. (Previous ranking: 4)

Kaine

2. Tim Kaine: The governor of Virginia got support from an unlikely source earlier this week: Terry McAuliffe. McAuliffe, the campaign chairman -- and head cheerleader -- for Clinton's bid advocated for Kaine as the pick during a speech in Falls Church, Virginia earlier this week, according to a report from a local newspaper. (McAuliffe confidante Tracy "Tough as Nails" Sefl clarified the remark by noting: "There's a tremendous field of potential Vice Presidential candidates. And Mr. McAuliffe supports whatever decision Senator Obama makes.") There's little question that among the top five candidates, Kaine has the closest personal relationship to Obama. What is up for debate is how much influence that relationship will have on the Illinois Senator's choice. (Previous ranking: 2)

1. Evan Bayh: The Indiana Senator is the safest choice available to Obama. Bayh has been elected statewide five times (once as secretary of state, twice each as governor and Senator) in a Midwestern State dominated by Republicans in recent presidential elections. He is a steady (though uncharismatic) campaigner almost certain not to make any major mistakes on the trail. And, at 52, he furthers Obama's generational change argument against McCain. But, does Obama want to make a "safe" choice? (Previous ranking: 1)

By Chris Cillizza  |  July 25, 2008; 2:50 PM ET
Categories:  The Line  
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Comments

I wish Obama would look at Schweitzer or Dean.

Posted by: karen h | August 7, 2008 6:26 PM | Report abuse

Obama will court a veep with foreign policy/military experience....Biden , Powell or the like. Veep picks just to win a particular state may not be as necessary if Obama picks up those states himself and presumably over time he will break more ground in to those.
McCain should get a veep that is more charasmatic than himself and a lot quicker on responses. Regardless of his veteran status he too needs someone with foreign policy experience that is an independent thinker and not just a bandwagoner.

Posted by: twothepoint | August 5, 2008 9:46 AM | Report abuse

It surprises me to see Romney at the top of this list. What the heck? Romney & McCain really disliked one another through the primary, and McCain is about personal relationships. He needs someone with executive/economic experience he doesn't have. He also needs someone who will really excite the socially conservative base, who are weary of McCain. McCain has the luxury of watching Obama pick his VP then counter picking with his. So, who will Obama pick? Obama could use someone with some national security experience & executive experience...as he has neither. Obama surely satisfies the liberal anti-war left & the socially liberal left. Obama also excites the environmental movement. So, he needs someone to help him gain support from the average American...stregthen his national security bona-fides & give him some executive experience on the ticket. Jack Reed would certainly be great for national security bona-fides. Trouble is, Reed has basically eliminated himself from consideration, RI has a Republican governor who would replace Reed if he ran & Obama won and Reed has no executive experience. Kat Sebelius would be a good pick: a woman governor in a conservative state. Evan Bayh would be Obama's best choice, in my view. A moderate US Senator & former governor of Indiana, a pretty conservative state. He has executive experience, a moderate record & experience in national security issues. Tim Kaine seems to be the pick of the litter for Obama, however. Virginia is a state he believes he can pick up over McCain. He may pick Kaine to try & cut into the God gap as Kaine is a former missionary & has executive experience in Va. Va. is also a big military state. It looks, this week, like Kaine is the leading D candidate for VP. I still think, as I did last week, that Tim Pawlenty or Sarah Palin are the 2 people that McCain would best be served by. Pawlenty has a great socially conservative & economic record. Pawlenty would excite social conservatives, which are weary of McCain. He is also a tax cutting budget balancer in Minn. He coined the term "Sam's Club Republican." A really great line. On the other hand, Sarah Palin is a woman who could siphor Clinton voters. She is a reformer governor of Alaska who won 2 tough elections: beat out R. governor Frank Murkowski in the Republican primary and then against a former D. governor in the general election. Much of Palin's focus has been on building trust back in gov't. & dealing with oil issues there in Alaska. Palin would also be a great advocate for drilling in the Alaska Wildlife Refuge, and be a nice way for McCain to shift positions on the issue. Plus, Palin has good looks as a former beauty queen & basketball star (at the convention she could come out to "All American Girl". Plus, she has a personable story to make people fall in love with her: she has a kid with downs syndrome and Palin would also excite social conservatives. Granted, Pawlenty would do better in the midwest & with fiscal conservatives, but they both bring nice assets to the table. A wildcard pick for McCain may be Tom Ridge. Ridge would futhur strengthen McCain's foreign policy credentials & excite fiscally conservative voters. Ridge would not overly excite socially conservative voters. Ridge could also well help deliver Pa. quite easily. So, the line:

Obama's VP:
1. Tim Kaine
2. Evan Bayh
3. Kat Sebelius

McCain's VP:
1. Tim Pawlenty
2. Sarah Palin
3. Tom Ridge

Posted by: reason | July 29, 2008 12:52 PM | Report abuse

Posted by: buzzkill | July 28, 2008 4:51 PM | Report abuse

The best VP for McCain is Tom Ridge. A former popular Pennsylvania governor and congressman. He was the first head of the Department of Homeland Security and had the impossible task of bringing 22 government agencies together to protect American right after 9/11. He not only did the impossible, he did it very well and we had no attacks on our soil since. He is a decorated war hero. He is pro-choice but only in the cases of incest, rape, and danger to the health of the mother. This is a stance acceptable to most Republicans and Democrats. His choice would please the independents and probably give McCain-Ridge Pennsylvania's 21 electoral votes. He had a reputation for balancing state budgets and being strong on crime. He was even was well received by environmentalists. McCain would hit a home run with Ridge as his choice for VP.

Posted by: BadgerOne | July 28, 2008 3:54 PM | Report abuse

There is no Palin scandal folks. I know the liberals are desperate to keep McCain from selecting her because they know how strong she will make the Republican ticket in November. Governor Palin has a reputation of cleaning up corruption in her own party in Alaska. This left-wing conspiracy to undermine her reputation has already lost its legs.

McCain - Palin '08...that's the winning ticket.

Posted by: Dave | July 28, 2008 1:08 PM | Report abuse

I think Obama may choose Biden, Bayd and Kaine are a long shot.Obama's choice is like a side dish at dinner, McSeniles choice must be like the main course.He will choose Pawlenty, Romney will be a perfect campaign ad for Obama showing the friction between McSenile and Romney during the primaries. Of course to save mistakes when speaking McSenile may want to choose Liberman his ear piece and brain, Lets face it that is why Bush chose Cheney, He was his mouth piece and brain.I can not wait until the debates in late Sept. McSenile may want to get some anger management classes before then.Obama 08
Connie from Indiana

Posted by: Anonymous | July 28, 2008 12:16 PM | Report abuse

Hey Chris, this was a valiant effort, but I don't think the two eventual veep nominees are even on your lists. Romney is the only one on the Rep list with any reputation across the country, and he carries way too much baggage for McCain to carry. Jindal would be good in 4 to 8 years, maybe. So it will be someone else, probably Lindsey Graham.

As for Barack, I think he will make an unconventional choice. If I'm right, that would open the door to Biden or Hillary, but I don't think he'll go there. Instead, here's my list of probable picks: Chuck Hagel, Richard Lugar, William Cohen, or Colin Powell. That's right, Republicans all. Lee Hamilton would be on the list too, if he were a little younger.

You read it here first.

Posted by: Tim Cleaveland | July 28, 2008 10:18 AM | Report abuse

the first time in history 2 liberals would be on the GOP ticket if romney is chosen. talk about irony?

Posted by: dannyboy | July 27, 2008 7:33 PM | Report abuse

Andy I have been promoting Lindsey Graham here for months. They are buds, speak off the same script, someone McCain like and he has that baby face that deals with the age issue. The media keeps saying Michigan is in play and that Romney will make a difference there. Certain D states like Michigan always look like they are in play in Presidential years, W spent a ;ot of time and money there and then always seem to break D in Oct. Especially with a large AA turnout in Detroit. McCaskle too old? Likely in her 50s. Is that now ancient for the O 20 somethings. As a Clinton supporter I certainly would be OK with her selection but she has the same experience gap as O and problem with a likely GOP gain with her seat. Biden and Graham.

Posted by: Leichtman | July 27, 2008 2:15 PM | Report abuse

The tactical thing to do is:

1. Don't announce until you absolutely have to. The earlier your pick is known, the longer the opposition has to hone their attacks.

2. Feed the media all sorts of wrong choices. The opposition is currently spending a lot of time and money researching possible VP choices. If they are completely misled into spending resources on the wrong people, they can't launch any sort of attack until October - a month into your version of the veep's narrative. Even the most seasoned politician hasn't had a true investigation of his or her background until they are a viable candidate for the White House.

Posted by: muD | July 27, 2008 2:07 PM | Report abuse

Hey Captain America,

Almost all of Edward Kennedy's debt was racked up after he had no chance of winning in 1980- which was the day he announced he was running- he got only 600 delegates- yet went all the way to the convention and brought down the Democratic party with his behavior there. Carter still relieved his debt---and the Kennedy's aren't exactly lacking in money.

You still were awfully happy to get Saint Edward's "I'll preserve my power base" endorsement, weren't you?

HRC got 18 million votes 1/2 of all of those who voted--that alone indicates in a democracy she had the right to be there. If Barak hadn't thwarted efforts to allow for revotes in Florida and Michigan--which he absolutely did--she would have been tied in committed delegates as well. Just because you all started telling her to drop out in early February doesn't mean she was wrong for staying in. She is my senator and I am proud of her. She put actual policy proposals out there that were ambitious and progressive, one's she couldn't back away from easily. He did the rhetoric thing and easily backed out of previously suggested positions on the death penalty, gun control, FISA, Free trade/NAFTA and even foriegn policy among other things. Now we are stuck with the naked emporer. I'll vote for him but perhaps you all could turn your efforts toward something else, like getting our candidate to stick with some sort of progressive policy.

Leon

Posted by: Anonymous | July 27, 2008 1:48 PM | Report abuse

Just an FYI

Obama said this morning on Meet the Press... his most elaborate and specific answer on qualities in his choosing...

saying he would look to the person in the position to not always agree with him and be able to say so and more importantly he said the VP have a "Knowledge base" that would be a resource for him...

It's Joe Biden.

and on other channels Mccain said social security tax not off the table... suddenly he has to answer on the fact that every expert is sayign he is being at the least disingenuous saying he wouldn't raise taxes...that dam is starting to leak.

Posted by: Anonymous | July 27, 2008 10:13 AM | Report abuse

I am going to refute the CW as posted here by many.

No debater in either party at any of the dozens of candidate debates this cycle stayed on message like JB. He made zero "gaffes" and neither apologized nor should have apologized for anything he said.

His most recent notable public lapse - a favorable comparison of BHO to recent black candidates - was more than a year ago.

His most recent diarrhea of the mouth incident occurred during the Roberts confirmation hearing. He used all of his minutes at one point without asking Roberts a question.

He has more than a year of public questioning and appearances without incident under his belt. I doubt that can honestly be said of the nominees.

Yet the press, and many here, will repeat the now threadbare and dated mantra that JB has a loose tongue.

Posted by: MarkInAustin | July 27, 2008 9:59 AM | Report abuse

Yeah Bill Richardson did such a great job neg. with North Korea and Saddam. Sure we love his foreign policy approach.

Posted by: GOP | July 27, 2008 8:38 AM | Report abuse

The people love Joe Biden and would be extremely disappointed with him if he were to join the gertol group "McCain". I think America would be more excited with Biden on Obama's ticket

Posted by: PoliSciMon | July 27, 2008 4:14 AM | Report abuse

The people love Joe Biden and would be extremely disappointed with him if he were to join the gertol group "McCain". I think America would be more excited with Biden on Obama's ticket

Posted by: PoliSciMon | July 27, 2008 4:14 AM | Report abuse

The people love Joe Biden and would be extremely disappointed with him if he were to join the gertol group "McCain". I think America would be more excited with Biden on Obama's ticket

Posted by: PoliSciMon | July 27, 2008 4:14 AM | Report abuse

The people love Joe Biden and would be extremely disappointed with him if he were to join the gertol group "McCain". I think America would be more excited with Biden on Obama's ticket

Posted by: PoliSciMon | July 27, 2008 4:14 AM | Report abuse

The people love Joe Biden and would be extremely disappointed with him if he were to join the gertol group "McCain". I think America would be more excited with Biden on Obama's ticket

Posted by: PoliSciMon | July 27, 2008 4:14 AM | Report abuse

The people love Joe Biden and would be extremely disappointed with him if he were to join the gertol group "McCain". I think America would be more excited with Biden on Obama's ticket

Posted by: PoliSciMon | July 27, 2008 4:14 AM | Report abuse

The people love Joe Biden and would be extremely disappointed with him if he were to join the gertol group "McCain". I think America would be more excited with Biden on Obama's ticket

Posted by: PoliSciMon | July 27, 2008 4:14 AM | Report abuse

Add me to the chorus of "Why not Bill Richardson?" Despite a slam dunk foriegn policy week for Obama, McCain still hammers away on the troops and national security. Nobody has a better resume on national security than Richardson. Biden may have spent 30 years in the Senate talking about foriegn policy, but Richardson's actually gone to North Korea and Iraq and done the tough negotiating with Kim Jong Il and Saddam Hussein. Nobody is a better example of the hard nosed kind of diplomacy that Obama talks about than Richardson.

Add in Bill's 14 years in the House, a cabinet post, and two terms as a governor, and you've got exactly the kind of ying to Obama's yang that you need. He's a retail politics kind of guy, gregarious, but also able to stay on message the way that Biden wouldn't. How Tim Kaine and Sebelius make the Line, but not Richardson, is beyond me.

Also, why has Lindsay Graham gotten zero buzz? He's essentially McCain's best friend. If he's going to go with a "comfort choice," no one makes him more comfortable than a fellow military vet and Senate rebel. He's smart, Southern, and telegenic and reinforces McCain's central message of a steady hand at the wheel during time of war. A Graham pick makes way too much sense to have no Washington pundit talk about it at all. Weird.

Posted by: andygeorge | July 27, 2008 12:40 AM | Report abuse

McCain won't pick Palin: she's in the middle of a growing scandal, and one that has already damaged her seriously in Alaska.

Romney: unlikely, because of the mutual loathing in the primaries, plus the Mormon factor.

Crist: hmmm, the gay rumors don't help him, but he might help in Florida.

Pawlenty: probably as safe as it gets for McCain, but not exactly a dynamic VP pick.

For Obama, I can't see Hillary getting the VP slot. Too much bad blood, and she would fire up Republicans like no-one else. A gift to McCain. Sorry, folks, life is unfair.

Reed, Warner - ruled themselves out.

Edwards - hmm, love-child issues? Not exactly a great VP last time.

Dodd - might be caught up in scandal, and so less likely. Also, somewhat old.

Biden - too old, lacks message discipline.

Kaine - might bring Virginia, but would leave open space for the GOP. Not tremendously charismatic.

Sebelius. Made a less than stunning debut on primetime. Nice lady. good for the bipartisan schtick. Might enrage some confused Clintonites. How many? Would it matter?

McCaskill. Too old for the job, and probably better in Missouri. Might also enrage Clinton fans. See previous questions.

Bill Richardson. Not needed for Hispanics - Obama is doing fine. Might help with New Mexico, perhaps Colorado, but no sign of special charisma or impact. Rumors about being too touchy-feely. Has the Judas sign, see remarks about enraged Clintonites.

Evan Bayh. Stunningly dull. Might deliver Indiana, which seems to be in play. Not a tremendously convincing surrogate, and might well be better in Indiana.

Schweitzer. Good for a number of reasons - calm under pressure, charisma, good record in government, with very high approval ratings.Might bring Montana, although not many EVs in this. Still, might be the best pick. Also, in terms of age, a plausible successor. probably the best pick at this point.

My guesses would be: Pawlenty for McCain, and Schweitzer for Obama.

Posted by: morzer | July 27, 2008 12:39 AM | Report abuse

If you have ever witnessed Evan Bayh give a speech you would immediately discount him from any higher position -- and wonder what those crazy Hoosiers are thinking by constantly electing him to statewide offices.

If we are talking about Senators from Indiana, I think Senator Richard Lugar has a better shot than Bayh as Obama's running mate. Notice that Obama chose to have the other Senator from Indiana in his recent national commercials -- and Dick Lugar may help bring along more Obamacons.

I don't think the Obama camp will quickly forgive and forget that Bayh was such a Clinton supporter -- even when the writing was on the wall that she could not win.

Bayh brings nothting the ticket --- and I can't imagine that Indiana is really in play. With the ads running , it's as if he is getting a bipartisan endorsement from Hoosier favorite son Dick Lugar.

Posted by: JB in DC | July 27, 2008 12:00 AM | Report abuse

OK, on to the Dems:

Clinton: not gonna happen.

Sibelius: So Obama likes her. That and a token will get her on the subway. Can she even deliver Kansas? Can he pick a woman without being seen as pandering? This brings us to

McCaskill: If he goes for woman, she will be it. Folksy, maternal, politically savvy, from a swing state (which has not always seen fit to elect her).

Richardson: Indubitably well qualified, and gets along well with Obama. Hispanic. But Obama just showed he was right when he said he doesn't need a VP to boost him on foreign policy. And now he's running strong among Hispanics; those Hispanics who know Richardson is not an Anglo, despite his name, are likely to go for Obama anyway. The notion that Hispanics are racists who won't vote for a black was invented by Mark Penn. Not a strong campaigner; save him for Secretary of State.

Biden: Name recognition is always good. Same story as Richardson re foreign policy. Has well-deserved reputation as a loose cannon who will give away his position on a Sunday talk show in advance of the negotiations, but in this season has shown quite a talent for the pithy put-down that gets picked up on the TV news.

Kaine: Swing state that Dems can seriously contest, but what about that Lt. Governor problem? No experience in national government, not that that ever stopped a VP choice before.

Clark: brings too much controversy over whether he dissed McCains war record.

Here's a dark horse for you: Colin Powell. Obvious qualifications and name recognition. Independents love him. He could easily switch parties (unlike Hagel, who has had an elective career as a Republican). Minuses: sold his integrity on the war, and that's not yet forgotten. And a ticket with two African Americans?

Conclusions: McCaskill or a white guy. Bayh is the whitest, which may give him the edge.

Posted by: turningfool | July 26, 2008 7:28 PM | Report abuse

last post was mine and as I am undecided don't know how the sign in page posted, an obvious typo

Posted by: Leichtman | July 26, 2008 7:17 PM | Report abuse

Really curious why pundits still claim the selection is based upon how much a particular choice will help the nominee carry a state. Didn't work out for Kerry and to the best of my recollection it has not worked since JFK picked Lyndon. Seems like it is more of a test of character and judgment and doing the right thing for the country in case of succession and why it should likely be HC or Biden and Lindsey Graham. Why in the world would McCain want a religious problem on the table and who in the world believes that Romney will make any difference in Michigan. Can not remember watching any focus groups and hearing oh yea I like that Dukakas guy because of Bentsenone of the strongest VP choices ever. It might give the nominee a momentary bump in the polls but in the end means nothing to voters in November. I challenge anyone here to show any empirical political studies that would prove otherwise.

Posted by: for McCain | July 26, 2008 7:14 PM | Report abuse

Romney's pluses: fundraising and popular in MI (but I'd bet he can't deliver his home state of MA). Minuses: known for pandering (and hence not a balance to the top guy) and would alienate the evangelicals.

Pawlenty: who is this guy, and why is his name in front of me so often? Does he have a constituency outside of . . . what state was it again?

Portman: Calls even more attention to McCain's ignorance of economics.

Thune: There goes the argument that a first term senator isn't qualified to be Prez. But hey, he brings with him 3 electoral votes!

Conclusion: follow the money.

Posted by: turningfool | July 26, 2008 6:38 PM | Report abuse

What about Sarah Palin? I think she'd make a great VP pick for McCain.

Posted by: Clint | July 26, 2008 6:34 PM | Report abuse

Captain and Hillary. I had a very lengthy argument with someone deep in the Obama campaign on July 4 who argued that her Obama supporters were not the ugly foul mouth idiots like you guys still trashing the Clintons after she has garciously gone out there and raised millions for your campaign. I will be using your ugly posts against Hillary to forward to her and prove how absolutely wrong and naive she is to honestly believe that there are not juveniles like you who have nothing better to do with their then to trash patriots like the Clintons. And it is unbelievable that you are using that now stale argument that how dare she to have continued to run against the annoited one even though she was superiorly more qualified and better versed as a candidate to have dared to run. How dare those people not just bow down and listen to the Obama vitriol. How dare them.Its amazing after months we continue to read that garbage. And you are the future of the Democratic party?
Good Luck with that sorry attitude in November.

Posted by: Leichtman | July 26, 2008 6:29 PM | Report abuse

Hey idiot: give me one good reason I should read your garbage about HC and then be expected as a HC supporter to now be compelled to give my hard earned financial support to your campaign? Hillary is out there busting her chops with her supporters to raise money for your campaign, and your attitude towards her is screw her, we as Obama idiots don't give a durn about her or her family. Believe me that attitude is reciprocal.
Good luck with that attitude in Nov and please get me off of your campaign's junk mail solicitations for money.

Posted by: Leichtman | July 26, 2008 6:17 PM | Report abuse

If every one of my 18 million supporters sent me $1.50, my $27MM debt would be paid off. You loved me, didn't you? Where's the cash? It must be Barack's fault that my credit card isn't paid off.

Posted by: Hillary | July 26, 2008 4:55 PM | Report abuse

Getting way to in the weeds

Mccain will pick Romney as the safe bet

the wild card I think believe it or not is still Ridge. Pawlenty has a lot of stuff...the election stuff...the bridge collapse stuff after he cut the infrastructure budget is an almost non-starter with the situationn we are in with national infrastructure and McCain's tax gaffe...that he is still gaffing.

He is either going to pick the safe choice...or the guy he wants. Pawlenty as someone said earlier is a "place card" VP ...which hasn't worked for the dems for a long time.

My guess is the safe choice. Romney...

which again is funny because after seeing he and obama speak ...and even though their policies are different and they are running against each other ...I have no doubt (whether he would say it publicly or not) Mccain would vote for oBama over Romney. On what is right and what is wrong...Mccain is closer to Obama than Romney.

and Obama (reality people) is the same...

either he picks the safe choice for balance...Biden. or his friend Kaine (but supposedly he is pretty close to Biden)

and Bayh is the "place card" candidate...who fought for the war, fought against obama...and was a "Prell model...just kidding...

It's going to be Biden and Romney.

It's also both the best choices for the VP debate...and they don't need to be publicly vetted...and they are a familiar face.

Posted by: dl | July 26, 2008 3:09 PM | Report abuse

I say
Mccain/Shakira08

"Shake you can believe in...and the President can die from"
"As serious as a heart attack"
"The surge"
"CLEAR!"

I bet he likes her on the ticket more than Romney.

Posted by: Anonymous | July 26, 2008 2:58 PM | Report abuse

McCain doesn't have any good choices. Picking a national unknown like Pawlenty Portman or Thune, or be forced to pick Romney, with all his baggage. McCain also has a big timing problem. Pick early? Wait until after the democratic convention?

Obama has the "change" v "experience" choices, and lots of good choices for both. I think Chris has argued well that Bayh is the only possibility that combines both choices. Of the other candidates, Kaine is the change choice, Biden the experience choice.

But, I think Obama wants a really smart person as VP, someone who will add to governing. Bayh and Biden just aren't that smart. As earlier commentators have said, Bayh and Biden have "typical Washington politician" written all over them. Obama could pick either of them anyway--he is enough of a change candidate by himself, but I hope he won't.

Kaine is another Harvard law man. Depth. Interesting Roman Catholic, strong views. Future-oriented choice. Kaine would be a good partner in governing.

Posted by: SDR55 | July 26, 2008 2:25 PM | Report abuse

THE WAR WORTH VOLUNTEERING FOR . . .

GET OUT OF Bush's War -- $150 billion per year war [actually $300 billion when all the bills are tallied] . . . . . And put the money toward the real war effort.

WE CAN EASE the climate crisis, the economic crisis, the crisis of dependence on foreign energy, and decrease the importance of the Middle East all at once.

"Promises that more offshore drilling will magically bring down prices are not backed by the evidence. . . . A lot more oil has been found, a lot more has been produced. We have been drilling for more oil, and the prices have gone up, " Al Gore said. . . . . . . And T. Boone Pickens, Texas oilman and co-founder of the Swift-boaters, two of the most unlikely bedfellows, agrees.

Al Gore uttered the disturbing truth that "the exploding demand for oil, especially in places like China, is overwhelming the rate of new discoveries by so much that oil prices are almost certain to continue upward over time no matter what the oil companies promise." . . . . . . And T. Boone Pickens agrees.

Al Gore's core assertion is that the technology for alternative fuels -- wind, solar and geothermal -- is far more advanced than we realize. . . . . Pushing that progress further would cut the costs of energy, with Gore insisting that renewables could eventually "give us the equivalent of $1 per gallon gasoline." . . . . . And T. Boone Pickens agrees.

"The only way to break free from the burden of rising gasoline prices and electricity rates is to get free" from a process through which we "bid up the price of every last drop of oil and every last lump of coal," Gore said. Cheaper electricity and the enhanced technology that comes in getting it, in turn, will speed the onset of electric cars. . . . . And T. Boone Pickens agrees.

T. Boone Pickens has said hundreds of times publicly that, "We can't drill our way out of the energy problem." . . . . . And Al Gore agrees.

Voters say they hate gimmicks and insist they want bold solutions. Well, Al Gore and T. Boone Pickens are testing that proposition. They are saying that the political space needs to be expanded for those actually running for office. Will Obama or McCain take the opening?

So my question to McCain and Obama is simple, are you willing to take up Gore's Ten-Year-Challenge with warlike zeal? Or, do you insist on "Plundering for our own ease and convenience the precious [hydro-carbons] of tomorrow"? (Ike Eisenhower)

Will you join, too? Visit this site to learn more and add your voice: http://www.wecansolveit.org/

Posted by: Coldcomfort | July 26, 2008 2:13 PM | Report abuse

You got it, DDAWD. Harriet Christian, don't get mad but here's the thing -- Virtually all HRC's millions in debt were amassed after she had no mathematical chance of winning. So HRC's borrowed funds were spent on the personal destruction of Barack and ending his viability as a general election candidate. Not trying to revisit this issue but some understanding is needed here.

Posted by: Captain America | July 26, 2008 1:47 PM | Report abuse

"At last count a staggering $200,000 for her campaign debt and millions from Clinton supporters for Obama. Sounds as expected."

What do you expect? People want to have a role in helping getting a president elected. I really doubt people are that fired up about settling an individual's campaign debt.

Posted by: DDAWD | July 26, 2008 1:33 PM | Report abuse

Final effort: Mrs. Leichtman, you are blaming the messenger. Whose fault is it HRC is behind Ms. Wuomos in someone's veep poll? (In that same poll, she did beat out Tyne Daly by the way) Calm down. You know full well what over-the-top antics the harpies have planned for the convention. Don't encourage them. The criticism on the blog is directed only at them. So to clarify: Patti Solis Doyle, un mejor si. Carville, si. Rendell, si. Bayh, si. Sebelius, si. Harpies, no.

Posted by: Captain America | July 26, 2008 1:26 PM | Report abuse

During a CNN interview with Wolf Blitzer and Mccain. Mccain said that a 16 months timetable to withdrawl from Iraq was a good Idea. Mccain has never agreed to any timetable. Now that Pres. Bush, PM Maliki has signed on to Obama's 16 month strategy now Mccain has also signed on. Mccain also is in denial. Wolf asked Mccain if he was president and PM Maliki persist on a 16 month withdrawl what would he do? Mccains answer was he wont because He know PM Maliki very well and he knows he has elections comming up. Therefore, Mccain is saying that Maliki is calling for a timetable to withdrawl from Iraq to win an election. Why else would he say, I know him, He wont persist on a withdrawl from Iraq, and he has elections comming up.

Posted by: Greg | July 26, 2008 1:11 PM | Report abuse

Pawlenty was found guilty of breaking a Minnesota campaign law in 2002 and his campaign was fined quite a bit of money.

He won anyway (partly due to a big year for Republicans and the Wellstone memorial.) Would this be an issue if he was chosen?

Posted by: tim from MN | July 26, 2008 12:36 PM | Report abuse

Mrs America: I see your idiotic references snd comparisons to Wuomos and calling every Clinton supporter Mrs. reflects your immaturity and destruction of the Democratic Party. Until the Obama campaign officially calls for an end to these repulsive comments by their rabid supporters, don't expect party unity.
Good Luck with that political strategy in November.

Posted by: Leichtman | July 26, 2008 12:14 PM | Report abuse

Mrs. Leichtman, I have to go with Smashed. We do have to move on. After all in Joe's latest veep long list, it states:
304,699,497. Ms. H.R. Clinton
304,699,498. Aileen Wuomos

With all due respect, when you are behind Ms. Wuomos, you may want to re-think things.

Posted by: Captain America | July 26, 2008 12:06 PM | Report abuse

incidentally smashed your posting of Mrs. by my name reinforces your stereotype that you presume all HC supporters are women. Actually many male HC supporters are less receptive to your campaign than women HC supporters.

Posted by: Leichtman | July 26, 2008 11:47 AM | Report abuse

smashed: perhaps you are new to this site but words like harpies, hag,shrew, dinsossaurs, relics, have been used here to describe HC and her supporters since January. We know that folks like you don't reflect Sen Obama but those kinds of comments don't do any more than reinforce the attitude HC supporters have towards your campaign and why I commented that nothing here has changed. Apparently not.

Posted by: Leichtman | July 26, 2008 11:44 AM | Report abuse

canaldoc: HC supporters are not monolithic but I can tell you that my wife an avid Clinton supporter has told me that she will reluctantly be supporting Obama, but she made that same comment that selecting Sebilius would be an insult to HC and make her less likely to vote for Obama. The consensus seems to be for someone with national stature like Biden, Dodd, HC or McCaskle rather than a governor with zero foreign policy credentials or zero national exposure. Kaine would be looked at as an insecure selection meant for maximum political purposes to help win a state rather than doing the right thing and picking the best person to step in as POTUS which is the whole purpose of that office. Are they ready for prime time to lead 300 million Americans in an economic and foreign policy crisis or just a political choice to help win the next election?

Posted by: Leichtman | July 26, 2008 11:38 AM | Report abuse

Mrs. "Leichtman", we were only referring to "the harpies" and not respectful, reasonable HRC supporters like Patti Solis Doyle and Mr. Carville and Mr. Bayh. We are concerned about unhinged deadenders like Harriet Christian, Carmella Lewis, and G. Ferraro. You know they are going to cut up at the convention, with the screaming, the name calling, the racial junk, the all-day stints on Fox News, etc. You know that. In olden days, Jason and his Argonauts would have just thrown a net over the harpies and secured the net to the ground. But that's not legal anymore. Besides Harriet would only bite through it. Maybe they can be bought off with tickets to the Dinah Shore Golf Tournament. Again, we intended no offense to the reasonable folks. You see -- SPLAAAAAAAAAAT
_____

Posted by: Leichtman | July 26, 2008 11:15 AM
"...for all of those wondering why Sen Obama is struggling in polling when the stars are lined up for a blowout win, read their supporters' comments and wonder no more. 'Hillary and her band of deranged narcisistic harpies'."

Posted by: Guy Smashed on Bob Novak's Car Windshield | July 26, 2008 11:34 AM | Report abuse

As a supporter of Senator Clinton's, I object to being lumped into some monolith
as in "there is fear that if Senator Obama chooses Gov Sebelius it would be seen as a poke in the eye to the Clinton supporters."

As an individual with my own mind, I would welcome Gov Sebelius on the dem ticket. I supported Senator Clinton not only because she is a competent woman, but because I am.

Women are competent to hold high public office but have been discriminated against in high profile politics (why else only one woman nominated to a national ticket in more than 200 years?).

Many women would welcome Gov Sebelius. Please do not lump us all into an unsupported categorical to give yourself an easy rationalization that serves only to deprive us once more of a woman on the ticket.

Posted by: canaldoc | July 26, 2008 11:29 AM | Report abuse

What about Wes Clark for Obama. As in General Clark. Saw him on TV this week doing the surrogate response to McCain's various comments. Wouldn't he be a great choice to go straight at McCain's alleged strong suit?

Does anyone know what happened to the political career or Elizabeth Dole? The wheels must have really come off for her not to even enter the whisper list for VP.

Posted by: NunzusCaesar | July 26, 2008 11:23 AM | Report abuse

Everyone wants to be the veep this year.

For a Domocrat to be seen as the loyal soldier to Obama's tanking in November would set them up as the front runner for 2012.

For a Republican, McCain is likely to be a one term president thus setting up his veep as the heir in 2012.

Posted by: William | July 26, 2008 11:22 AM | Report abuse

for all of those wondering why Sen Obama is struggling in polling when the stars are lined up for a blowout win, read their supporters' comments and wonder no more. "Hillary and her band of deranged narcisistic harpies".

That is how their campaign feels about her 18 million supporters. As a HC supporter I receive at least 10 solicitation letters and calls per week from the Obama campaign even when I have emailed the HC site and Obama site to take my unauthorized name and address off of their solicitaion list . I tell them that I am part of her band of narcisitic harpies. And how is that promised effort by the Obama campaign going to help pay off her debt? At last count a staggering $200,000 for her campaign debt and millions from Clinton supporters for Obama. Sounds as expected.

And Dave I have agreed with you for months about Richardson. He is the least palatable to the Clintons and her supporters and exactly why I am still betting on his selection. It should be either Hillary or Biden but neither are likely on the short list. And Sebilius? What kind of message would that send to women Clinton supporters? That a good woman governor with an unimpressive resume is more qualified than a former first lady.

And why is Lindsey Graham not being mentioned for McCain? They seem to be reading off the same page as is Senator McCaskle for Obama. A pefect match but would they risk losing a Missouri Senate seat.

Haven't been here for 6 weeks. Nice to read that nothing has changed with the Clinton hatred, which is still live and thriving here.

Posted by: Leichtman | July 26, 2008 11:15 AM | Report abuse

If Mccain get elected you are reading about who will be the next president of the united states. The odds that Mccain would complete his first term are slim. He is not even mentally fit to be commander in chief. Mccain who normaly has a cancer exam every three months has not had one in 7 months now. Does that tell you something. Either he has something of they are afraid something will be found and don't want to take any chances.

Posted by: Anonymous | July 26, 2008 10:55 AM | Report abuse

there is no way Bayh will be the choice; he is boring!

Sebilius can be taken off of the list too and I'm doubtful that Kaine is the one too.

I see the Reed has "taken himself out of the running" for VP, whatever that means.

I'm down to it being Biden or someone whose name hasn't been mentioned yet in the speculation.

Posted by: PeninsulaMatt | July 26, 2008 10:28 AM | Report abuse

The possibility of losing a Governor's Mansion or House or Senate Seat is certainly a consideration when choosing a Running Mate, but if you're comfortable with a choice, and feel you have the right guy (or gal), you have to go with it. Keeping your eye on the real prize is more important that getting too involved with details. It's the meat in the casserole that's the Big Story, not the number of grains of rice.

Posted by: Budikavlan | July 26, 2008 10:22 AM | Report abuse

Romney should give up on Presidential politics and just wait for the day when he becomes God of his own planet by converting his ancestors by proxy.

Posted by: Budikavlan | July 26, 2008 10:18 AM | Report abuse

Come on, Cillizza. You've got to be smarter than this. Tim Kaine for VP is one of the dumbest things I've ever heard. And I don't say that because of any ill feelings towards Governor Kaine. The fact is that the Lieutenant Governor of Virginia, Bill Bolling, is a Republican. If Kaine is named Obama's running mate and Obama wins, then they've effectively handed Virginia's gubernatorial power to a Republican at a time when the Democrats, at long last, are clearly on the upswing in the state. It makes so sense at all to choose Kaine for VP.

Posted by: Carl | July 26, 2008 10:10 AM | Report abuse

To the July 25 post below:

What? Hillary to the rescue? We all know HRC and her unhinged band of deranged narcissistic harpies plan some last minute madness at the convention. They of course will try to disrupt it and embarrass Barack. We can't stop them from screaming and hollering and putting paper in their ears (Carmella Lewis, was that really a good use of your 15 minutes in Unity, NH?). Plan on a patented G. Ferraro hate blast (All AAs get the mute button ready.) Why not just schedule an extra day in Colorado so they can go into their out-of-control act for the whole day, and be done with it. When will this HRC junk be over with? Just when will -- SPLAAAAAAAAAAAAAT
_____

Posted by: | July 25, 2008 8:53 PM

At least Hillary knows how to fight and not merely bend like a weak reed in a stiff wind. I am more disappointed than angry. But I fear that I am right.
The Dems can't afford to lose, and that's where this thing seems headed.

Hillary to the rescue!

Posted by: Guy Smashed Against Bob Novak's Car Windshield | July 26, 2008 9:32 AM | Report abuse

I still don't get why everyone thinks Romney is strong on the economy, when he made his money by breaking up companies and shipping jobs overseas (see American Standard in Ohio). That little tidbit could be pounded daily into the American consciousness until November.

Posted by: Nancy | July 26, 2008 9:30 AM | Report abuse

Here's what I believe to be BO's revised long list for vp (in order of preference), with private BO notations. [We regret the recent passing of vp candidate Estelle Getty, who had made a strong showing, sort of, before she paased away.] HRC remains in the running, sort of, due to intense lobbying by an "H. Christian." List follows:

1. Claire McCaskill (major BBW crush)
2. Tim Kaine (wins me VA)
3. Chuck Hagel (does he ever smile: no)
4. Patti Solis Doyle (couldn't have done it without you, PSD)
5. Michael Bloomberg (great b/c he always picks up the check at Sardis)
* * * * * * * * * * * * *
304,699,490. Tyne Daly
304,699,491. S. Epatha Merkerson (a nice personality, though)
304,699,491. K. Sebelius (Staff: Check whether she coached Tenn. women's BB team)
304,699,492. C. Crist (shows partisanship and that there's not anything wrong with "it")
304,699,493. Tom Selleck (lost argument to Rosie, 'nuff said)
304,699,494. Evan Mecham (get him before Mac does)
304,699,495. William Baldwin (less annoying than Alec but he should have sold to the black guy in "Pacific Heights")
304,699,496. Frank Urban Zoeller, Jr.
304,699,497. Ms. H.R. Clinton
304,699,498. Aileen Wuomos

Posted by: Broadway Joe | July 26, 2008 9:06 AM | Report abuse

CHRISTINE TODD WHITMAN is the one who told workers and the public it was safe to be at the Trade Center, which now is the cause for major health problems and suits. Like most on the VP list they all have an achillies heel.

Posted by: patrick nyc | July 26, 2008 8:56 AM | Report abuse

I still think it will Jim Webb.

Posted by: Stan Kaplan | July 26, 2008 8:41 AM | Report abuse

McCain must decide he wants to win this election by choosing the candidate with the biggest resume for executive experience and with the most appeal to independent voters who are the key to victory in November--former New Jersey governor and EPA director CHRISTINE TODD WHITMAN.

Posted by: Anonymous | July 26, 2008 8:26 AM | Report abuse

O... and Chris, could you point out what has happened to Gov. Charlie Crist?

Posted by: Diederik | July 26, 2008 7:22 AM | Report abuse

Chris, I think

You're right to point at the many strenghts Romney would add to a ticket. However, his robotic performances during the primaries, his flip-flops on important issues, his gubernatorial stint in one of the most liberal states in the union, and his mormonism add to the lack of friendship between McCain and Romney. More importantly, voters will see Romney as the one who laid them off. Yes, he knows how to make money, but only through buying up companies, slicing them, and laying-off the workers. Democrats are all too eager to point that out to the voters of Ohio and Pennsylvania.

Pawlenty, on the other hand, scored big when McCain acknowledged that "people are really going to like him." Furthermore, Pawlenty has a great narrative, a mutual affection with McCain, and throughout this whole vetting process been introduced to a nationwhile audience.

On the Democratic side, my bets are on Bill Nelson from Florida, Jack Reed from Rhode Island, and Evan Bayh from Indiana. Nelson and Bayh are former governors and all three serve in SASC. Reed is one of the most frequent visitors to Iraq, but hails from a solid Democratic state. Florida and Indiana are nice pick-ups for Obama in November.

Governor Kaine simply lacks any national security, foreign policy experience that Obama needs to overcome to fight the increased attacks on his experience.

Posted by: Diederik | July 26, 2008 7:21 AM | Report abuse

The Audacity of wanting to be the Commander in Chief of a military that he and no member of his family has seen fit to serve.He once stated he wished that he would have served. Why didn't he ? Five sons none of them willing to serve. Do we really want these clowns leading America into the 21st century?The only thing McCain has ever lead is the pledge to the flag,and Mitt the morning services hymn at church.

Posted by: rentamob | July 26, 2008 7:02 AM | Report abuse

Obama's VP: Father Michael Pfleger. He is old, white, Catholic, and hates Hillary.

McCain's VP: Gov. Charlie Christ of Florida. Popular, outspoken, and gay!!!

Posted by: berrymonster | July 26, 2008 6:44 AM | Report abuse

Any guesses on why Richardson shaved his beard off yesterday? Getting ready for a VP surprise?

Posted by: Oliver | July 26, 2008 6:42 AM | Report abuse

Anyone who thinks the candidates drive the election campaign is deluding themself; it is the press that does the driving. They control who gets the attention and who doesn't. It is in their best interest to try and keep the election somewhat close by manipulating coverage for their 24 hour televised news services.

If either of these candidates had an ounce of brains, or command leadership qualities, they would be manipulating the media instead of the other way around. The candidates should wait until their respective conventions, after they officially receive their party's nomination, to announce their choice of running mate. Let the press stew in their juices.

The whole thing smacks of the Citizen Kane syndrome.

Posted by: Capt. Howard | July 26, 2008 6:02 AM | Report abuse

Who was the last sitting governor who gave up his position to become a Veep? I can't think of one in the last fifty years. The only two ex govs have been Rockefeller (Ford) and Agnew(Nixon). Governors don't quit to become Veeps and ex-govs rarely are chosen.

Posted by: dogsage | July 26, 2008 5:45 AM | Report abuse

Romney looks like the kind of guy that would trip McCain on the way back from the inauguration. Slick snake charmer.

Posted by: Laughable Commentary | July 26, 2008 4:38 AM | Report abuse

"Even before Stenberg, key leaders of the National Organization for Women and the National Abortion Rights Action League were quoted as urging Al Gore to drop Sen. Evan Bayh of Indiana from his list of potential vice-presidential candidates because Bayh voted for the partial-birth ban, even though he has voted with abortion rights advocates on every measure since coming to the Senate. Margie Kelly, spokesperson for the Center for Reproductive Law and Policy, told the Baltimore Sun that "You cannot support choice and support the partial birth ban at the same time.""

Posted by: Indiana voter | July 26, 2008 4:31 AM | Report abuse

If Bayh supported the war and also has a not so good track record on women's issues, how can he be on the ticket? Obama needs to stay true to the principles that has made him popular. Picking someone who has not been supportive of women's issues and who supported the war seems to be a problem. Please provide thought on these two issues...

Posted by: Indiana voter | July 26, 2008 4:15 AM | Report abuse

McCain - Omarossa '08

Posted by: angriestdogintheworld | July 26, 2008 4:03 AM | Report abuse

Folks why do you believe that McCain is going pick a VP "NOW", it makes no sense. Common sense says you let Obama go first and see who he picks. Then you let the media go wild on Obama's pick. Then you keep everyone guess till the convention, in fact you keep them guess at the convention so they have something to do for 4 days.

VJ Machiavelli
http://www.vjmachiavelli.blogspot.com

Posted by: VJ Machiavelli | July 26, 2008 2:40 AM | Report abuse

Chris: I think the choice for Vice-President should be Barack Obama's alone. Everyone is speculating, leave it to him.

The problem that John McCain is having is Barack Obama. He chided Obama into going to visit Iraq. Now John is mad because of the results. I believe in my heart that McCain wanted Obama to fall of his face and make everyone ashamed.

People are saying that Barack's poll number are down, but I think it is the other way around. John McCain has been in political office for more than 25 years, so why are his numbers so low. His numbers are lower than the new comer.

Posted by: RUTH | July 26, 2008 2:34 AM | Report abuse

Millions of Americans living and sometimes dying without health insurance and the government wants to spend 40 billion dollars to fight aids overseas.You would think that they would want to take care of their own people first.

Posted by: sicko | July 26, 2008 2:23 AM | Report abuse

Bill Richardson is clearly the man for the Veep spot. More foreign credentials than a bag of heroin smuggled out of Afghanistan, another bi-racial, this time Latino and white, still young for that youth movement, but best of all, EXECUTIVE EXPERIENCE, from a red state too. I'm for Bill on the VP slot.

Posted by: Dave | July 26, 2008 1:55 AM | Report abuse

Obama may strat thingking that he is likly to win so he may pick the most quilied which is Tom Daschle. He brings no help with the election but will be a huge help in running the adminastraion.

Posted by: Rolf | July 26, 2008 1:13 AM | Report abuse

Considering how many other vaunted beliefs McCain has jettisoned this year, I actually believe Romney does have the best chance, which I never would have bought 4 months ago. And if so, I will love it -- Mr. Flip-Flopper himself, no darling of the Christian Right and a guy who's famous health plan is blowing up in MA as we speak. I, of course, also don't count out Sen. McCain's lapboys LIEberman and Graham. Graham would be an INSANE choice, which is why today when I saw a photo of them together at the kraut-haus I said to myself, it's just stupid enough to be perfect for McCain.
As far as the Democrats are concerned, I dunno. I hate Biden -- I still remember him and his hair plugs and he is the ONE politician on this list that I've always thought was, well, arrogant. Tim Kaine may be great, but he has no national recognition, Jack Reed the same. I think Kathleen Sebelius would be a sizzle choice but KS isn't likely to go Obama and I think Clinton supporters would hate the choice. Bayh? Bah. He's the sacrifice bunt of the choices, which may be just what Obama needs since whatever he does he'll be damned if he does, damned if he doesn't. I really trust Obama and his staff -- they have run a great campaign and I think they'll do this well, too. But if I had a choice, I'd go along with Chris Dodd -- I didn't think much about him until he started appearing as Obama's surrogate after the primaries -- articulate, experienced, progressive. He's the one guy you don't hear alot about that I think would be tremendous (the only caveat being the explosion of banks and Dodd being, well, chair of the banking committee -- any blood on his hands?). But whatever...

Posted by: straight talk my a** | July 26, 2008 12:04 AM | Report abuse

tic, open your ears & mind, will you

Posted by: Anonymous | July 25, 2008 11:52 PM | Report abuse

Isn't Bayh against free trade!?

Posted by: Anonymous | July 25, 2008 11:50 PM | Report abuse

Barack Obama should pick his soulmate and idol Nation of Islam leader Louis Farrakhan for his VP.

Posted by: tic | July 25, 2008 11:47 PM | Report abuse

Remember when everything from Memorial Day to labor day was considered silly season and real newsmen went on vacation., leaving stunts like frying eggs on side walks to the John Cameron Swayze wannabe's?

I have news for you, silly season is here in force, and frying an egg on a sidewalk would be hard news compared to some of this stuff.

Of course we should he handicapping VP's. Maybe even maiming them or crippling them for life, although finishing fifth on some losers short list is probably as emotionally crippling as finding out that the only girl you asked to the prom went stag and drag.

So back to restaurant hopping with Gramps, and guessing if an Air Force blue and thinly striped tie is a political, religious, or fashion statement. Did anyone check sales of Chinos after Barack in Baghdad?

Posted by: ceflynline@msn.com | July 25, 2008 11:29 PM | Report abuse

Given John's proclivities, he will dither and then make the worst possible choice, Rob Portman. Portman's Economics credentials are, after all, as BUSH'S OMB man, and the mere fact that George would appoint someone to a post is sure sign of total lack of competence. While cognoscenti in SW Ohio actually recognize the name, they really just get the feel that he was some bone head Republican from down around Cincinnati. Other than "What George Say" identify anything Rob ever stood for. He sort of looks like a younger John Boehner, not exactly VP qualifications, (although looking like a young Robert Redford seemed to be Dan Quayle's only qualification, so go figure)

If the Hard Right has any say it Might be Mike Huckabee, for no good reason but the bizarre hope that John would actually win and drop dead.

Still, John ain't looking too lively, and there are a bit less than four months he has to survive to get voted on. He is down to such strenuous campaign activities as eating wurst in Columbus, OH, in the friendly confines of that very Republican Yuppie project, German Village. He DIDN'T also hit Young's Dairy, possibly because the combination of German cuisine and too much dairy might have put him down for the count. It would also have put him within a couple of miles of Yellow Springs, and the left wing vibes might have been the final trump for him.

Maybe the side bet ought to be whom the Repubs have ready in the wings.

Posted by: ceflynline@msn.com | July 25, 2008 11:14 PM | Report abuse

Bob Novak for McCain's veep. If you can't shoot your friend in the face, the next best think is to hit and run a homeless 86 year old.

Setphen Colbert for Obama's veep. He wants the job.

Posted by: NoVA | July 25, 2008 10:39 PM | Report abuse

Our sense is the deflation of the Sebelius balloon has more to do with the fact that picking her would be seen as a poke in the eye to backers of Hillary Rodham Clinton than with anything the Kansas governor has done. (You can imagine the outraged comments; "So he wanted to pick a woman but Hillary wasn't good enough?")
******************

Does your wife know you think women are stupid?

Posted by: Aleks | July 25, 2008 10:35 PM | Report abuse

Unless I'm mistaken, Indiana and Rhode Island have Republican governors. Each state has their own process for filling an empty Senate seat, but, imagine on election day, we get 60 seats in the Senate, and lose one with Bayh or Reed. 60 is the magic number to totally bypass Republican nonsense.

Posted by: Gerard | July 25, 2008 10:27 PM | Report abuse

Chris is right on Bayh. He's up against weaker competition than when he was on Al Gore's shortlist 8 years ago, and since then Bayh's stock has only gone up. So Obama's choice is a referendum on Bayh. If not him, it'll be Biden, but both voted for the war, as did Hillary.

Posted by: Justin | July 25, 2008 9:45 PM | Report abuse

Kaine should be out, since his Lt. Gov is a Republican and would have the inside track in 2010, giving Repubs a 6 year run in the capital.
Bayh's war vote should keep him out.
Biden's a mouth that can't be stopped.
Sebelius isn't Hillary.

Reed is a good, solid choice, but unknown, except in New England, and Rhode Island is safe for Obama.

Leahy is good, and could counteract McCain/Romney in NH.

Too bad Bob Graham is the same age as McCain, otherwise a top choice.

Hillary might be the best choice electorally, but, geez, Bill is just too much a wild card and could undermine Obama just for spite.

But, somehow, I just think that Richardson is going to be the choice.

I wish it would be Feingold...


Posted by: capemh | July 25, 2008 9:27 PM | Report abuse

Gosh, chris-bama. You lost me $5. You managed five paragraphs about McCain that neither pointed out his weaknesses or compared him unfavorably to Obama. Drinking today, or farming out the blog to a journalist?

Posted by: guido28 | July 25, 2008 9:19 PM | Report abuse

Whoever wrote this is on drugs:

"I call on Hillary Clinton to do the right thing and mount an 11th hour challenge, because Barack is looking insincere and manipulating..."

LOL! You think Hillary is sincere and not manipulative. That dishonest self-serving fraud would say or do anything to win. On his worst day Obama has far more integrity than Hillary. Get a grip!

Posted by: RealChoices | July 25, 2008 8:56 PM | Report abuse

from http://nohillaryvp.blogspot.com/

Sorry Hillary, Vice-Presidential candidates don't select themselves

For the last 50 years, the selection of the Vice-Presidential nominee in both parties has basically been the sole prerogative of the Presidential nominee. What is more, those who might have coveted the job were obliged by custom to at least feign indifference or perhaps outright non-interest.

The most recent exception was in 1956 when delegates at the Democratic convention actually chose the Vice-Presidential nominee, but only after Presidential nominee Adlai Stevenson threw the selection process open to the delegates. Even in this instance the prerogative of the Presidential nominee was predominant.

Never ones to be bound by custom or taste, as Hillary's prospects for winning the top spot on the ticket grew increasingly dim in May and June, the Clintons suddenly decided, "well, okay, we'll take the Vice-Presidency." It wasn't that explicit of course. First there were Clinton surrogates suggesting a so-called "dream ticket" of Obama and Hillary, then it was revealed the Bill Clinton said Hillary had "earned" an offer of the Vice-Presidency (one wonders what Bill's reaction would have been in 1992 if he was told Paul Tsongas or Bob Kerrey had earned the offer to be his running mate and he was obliged to make the offer?). Finally, it was reported that in conversations with supporters, Hillary did not reject the plans to mount efforts to "encourage" Obama to choose her.

The taboo of expressing uninvited interest in the Vice-Presidency has been broken before. 2008 also-ran former Senator Mike Gravel submitted his name for the Vice-Presidential nomination at the Democratic convention in 1972 but was soundly trounced by the Presidential nominee George McGovern's pick Thomas Eagleton. What is unusual is the speed in which Hillary began a campaign to anoint herself Vice-Presidential nominee and intensity of her supporters' tactics. Blogs have been set up to promote her candidacy, Hillary supporters are being encouraged to flood online polls, they are employing hot rhetoric to demand Obama choose her.

What Hillary and supporters don't seem to understand is Vice-Presidential nominees are not self-selected. Even if selecting her was a good idea, and it isn't, the tactics of her supporters look like an ultimatum to Obama. For him to agree would be a sign of weakness.

The results of the MSNBC "Veepstakes" are in

The efforts of Hillary supporters to stampede the online poll came up short, Senator Joe Biden was preferred selection by 55% to 45% for Hillary. If there was an organized effort for Joe, it wasn't apparent. I guess it was a simple case of merit. I don't know if Barack wants Biden or Biden really would accept, but as I said before, he'd be a FAR better choice than Hillary.

Posted by: Philip Meyer | July 25, 2008 8:53 PM | Report abuse

TO THE WINDSHIELD GUY: PUT ON THE FOG LIGHTS AND SEE WHAT'S COMING ATTCHA...
THEN TELL OBAMA TO MOVE OVER
AND LET HILLARY TAKE THE WHEEL!

Guy on Novak's windshield:

If you a true-believing starry-eyed Obamanaut and not a disinformation troll, let me say this:

I was for Obama until a few months ago. Then he changed. His Iraq nuances don't bother me; I think he remains fairly consistent and realistic on the Mideast.

But then came FIA/immunity... and a sinking feeling that this guy is not only vacillating, but has revealed his lack of principles...

Then came the DC gun control decision, which he countenanced. Suddenly he's pro-handgun, a total flip-flop from previous positions, in which he supported reasoned gun control legislation while still backing the right to own a gun for hunting or self-defense at home.

Then he expressed approval of the expansion of the death penalty, even though black males are disproportionately among those found to be wrongfully convicted of capital crimes. Then he signs off on a further blurring of the separation between church and state. And yes, his pandering is consistent on that one -- just like he used Rev. Wright's church to build a political base, tolerating the Rev's hateful rhetoric for 20 years while denying he ever heard it, when in fact he quoted some of Wright's purple hate prose in his book.

Then he takes on the air of Stalin, taking his cult of personality stadium persona to Germany -- of all places -- just egging on his critics who already see a bit of the "Ubermeister" in this guy's overblown stagecraft and his "audacity of verbosity."

If only his dedication to his earlier stated positions on civil liberties were as entrenched as his hubris.

If he had come home after the Mideast, he would have triumphed. But he just had to play the role of "Mr. President," without benefit of the election. JFK, you'll recall, was the President when he declared "Ich Bin en Berliner."

As the Chicago Tribune cartoon rightfully declared, Barack's paean to the masses told the world: "Ich Bin en BEGINNER."

The guy is starting to SCARE me. I know others who feel the same. He's getting creepy -- and another big stadium scene only reinforces the Third Reichian comparisons. He's already shed some core positions; yet he pontificates as if he's truly a "change agent" when he is proving himself to be more like a chameleon -- changing his colors to suit the moment.

Remember how we laughed when Bill Clinton said Hillary was the "real" change agent? I'm starting to realize what he was trying to say; same with his "fairy tale" remark, even if he backed off on that one.

This IS turning out to be a fairy tale, and if the election is lost, it will end like Hansel and Gretyl and not "happily ever after."

Let's give Barack the benefit of the doubt and posit that the "psy ops" teams got to him. First they reported threats, then they surrounded him 24/7, took away his privacy, made him realize that the apparachnik really calls the tune. Then, over a period of months of conditioning, his tune begins to change, taking on more conventional, acceptable tones.

Presto, change-o! Meet the Manchurian Candidate. Mission Accomplished.

Now that's the KIND interpretation; a more cynical view is that he always was the Music Man, coming to town to sell the rubes on a boy's band that plays on the "think" system. Just "think" about "change you can believe in" -- with an emphasis on the "BELIEVE" and not on the "CHANGE."

I bought this guy's act for a while. Now I think we have been sold on the "O-Kee-Doke," to borrow a phrase.

I'm not buying it anymore.

I call on Hillary Clinton to do the right thing and mount an 11th hour challenge, because Barack is looking insincere and manipulating and the general electorate is not going to buy an attractive but audacious chimera.

If he does get elected, I hope he proves me wrong. I will be among the first to admit my misguided opinion and fall in line.

But if he's backing off from his core values now, before the real pressure is brought to bear, can you imagine how he'll cave when the power elite applies the muscle?

At least Hillary knows how to fight and not merely bend like a weak reed in a stiff wind.

I am more disappointed than angry. But I fear that I am right.

The Dems can't afford to lose, and that's where this thing seems headed.

Hillary to the rescue!

Posted by: Anonymous | July 25, 2008 8:53 PM | Report abuse

FlownOver writes:
"Hope it's not Bayh. He may be the safe choice, but every time Obama starts "playing not to lose" he starts losing ground. Bayh seems more like a place-holder than a candidate."

Dude (or Dudette) -- Nicely put. Bayh is the equivalent of the "prevent defense", which does neither.

angriestdogintheworld:
Cool new graphics! What happened between 3:30 and 4:30?

Posted by: Anonymous | July 25, 2008 8:41 PM | Report abuse

Nissi says:I just want to add how frustrated I am that Sebelius is almost certainly going to get passed over because of angry former Clinton supporters.
_______
Ditto, Nissi! And Mr. Cillizza, it won't matter to the most rabid of the Clinton supporters whether Obama picks a male or female:
"He picked a man! He's a sexist!", or "He picked a woman not Hillary! He's a pig!"

He should just pick who he thinks would be best and would win the VP debate.

To Broadway Joe: I always enjoy your "long" list of VP candidates. I hope you notice that Mr. Cillizza took Ms. Clinton off his list, perhaps you would do the same with your list? Even if you are using the entire population of the U.S., because Hillary ain't gonna happen. I noticed you had Estelle Getty on one list, you should remove her, too.

Posted by: Sunshine | July 25, 2008 8:37 PM | Report abuse

Why not Bill Richardson? Outside of Washington (sort of), foreign policy chops, helps with Hispanics, from the southwest and someone who seems to get along with Obama. Did he step out of the race and I missed it?

Posted by: Anonymous | July 25, 2008 8:30 PM | Report abuse

Obama should pick Tom Daschle. He's well respected in Congress, soft spoken and smart, he dosen't have to give up a seat, and he has the credentials of being villified by the Republicans for years.

Posted by: JoeinMN | July 25, 2008 8:24 PM | Report abuse

I don't care who Obama chooses.

Sen. McCain should choose Mitt Romney. I Googled Mitt and his record is a Bobby Jindal, + good looking, + experience, + rich and successful, + clean looking (so, clean looking, you could eat off his shoes), + moderate, + pro-abortion, and + economic experience.

One of his negative is that he is not well known. I think this is why he was not chosen over Sen. McCain. Another negative is him being Mormon. I don't understand why people are against Mormons. I think that people are against Mormons because their religion might be a little weird (I am guessing.). However, I think that all religion is weird, and therefore no one should look down at Mitt Romney for being Mormon.

Posted by: Anonymous | July 25, 2008 8:04 PM | Report abuse

P.S. I like Obama-Leahy a lot. I wish Leahy had run for President years ago, but apparently he's not interested, which is another sign of his level-headedness. (You've got to be a little crazy to want to be President bad enough to go through a campaign like this one.)

Posted by: Willythekorn | July 25, 2008 7:57 PM | Report abuse

"So why hasn't Obama closed the deal? "

Number one reason - it's not Election Day yet.

Posted by: bondjedi | July 25, 2008 7:53 PM | Report abuse

One more thing: I can't BELIEVE anyone seriously puts Charlie Crist on the list. A suspiciously quick engagement raises more questions than it quashes.

Posted by: Budikavlan | July 25, 2008 7:50 PM | Report abuse

The only person anyone has named who would be more palatable to me than HRC for Obama is Chet Edwards. I like Sebelius, too, but if Obama picks a woman, he almost HAS to pick HRC. Kaine is good too, but Bayh and Biden, while good men, are just boring picks.

I don't think McCain really HAS a good choice. Romney would have the same negatives he had as a Presidential candidate. Palin and Jindal have only been in office for a short time (plus Jindal looks about 16). McCain has aged A LOT in the last few years, and he should really avoid anyone who looks like they could be his grandchild.

Posted by: Budikavlan | July 25, 2008 7:48 PM | Report abuse

Scrivener, what hate sight are you getting this drivel from? And on what planet are Jesse Jackson, Sheila Jackson Lee, and BET's Bob Johnson considered "black leaders"? FYI, J-Lee was literally booed off of the stage the last time she showed up at an AA event. As totally discredited as they are, they are going to initiate some HRC coup??? Even BO's enemies in the MSM have called his overseas tour a resounding success, especially the Germany trip. Mac's response to BO's Germany speech? -- a speech in a German restaurant in rural Ohio. Even Broder is pro-BO now. Broder! And nobody paid for his travel or meals or anything. By the way the country is punched out over Rev. Wright, Rezko, fistbumps, and the rest of that distracting junk. Who cares? Moreover,...SPLAAAAAAAAAAAAT
______

Posted by: scrivener | July 25, 2008 7:20 PM
If in the final analysis, Obama's foreign jaunt looks more like showboating than statecraft, and if there's another scandal a la Rev. Wright/Rezko, Hillary still may emerge the nominee -- with the path greased by the endorsement of key black leaders such as Jesse Jackson, Sheila Jackson Lee, and BET's Bob Johnson.

Posted by: Guy Smashed on Bob Novak's Car Windshield | July 25, 2008 7:45 PM | Report abuse

What I understand to be the finalists so far:
1. Piyush Jindal
2. C. Crist
3. James "Jim" Crow
4. Ovral Faubus
5. Larry Craig
6. Gen. Slim Pickens
7. Mark Foley
8. John Birch
9. Rusty Calley
10. Harriet Christian (bipartisan)
They are all such excellent candidates; just can't pick a winner.

Posted by: Broadway Joe | July 25, 2008 7:27 PM | Report abuse

I love it when pundits try to predict things like Veep choices. It's even more fun than when pundits try to explain why the Presidential candidate chose that particular person for Veep. The fact is that the Veep choice probably has very little significance in the final vote.

The good news is that -- in the last century or so anyhow -- the Veeps that actually rose to the Presidency, no matter how weak a choice they seemed to be at the time (Truman & Ford, for example), managed to rise to the occasion and do a creditable or even excellent job.

(And on that note, let us all pray that George W. Bush remains healthy and happy until next January. The very thought of Cheney serving even an hour as President gives me the willies).

Posted by: Willythekorn | July 25, 2008 7:24 PM | Report abuse

HUCKABEE AND DODD MAKE MUCH MORE SENSE

(AND LOOK OUT FOR A HILLARY CONVENTION COUP!)

Picking the Mormon Romney could lose McCain just enough votes to swing the race to Obama or will it be Hillary Clinton for the Dems?

That's right, Chris. You can't rule out a second coming of Billary. I still think there's an 11th-hour putsch in the works.

If in the final analysis, Obama's foreign jaunt looks more like showboating than statecraft, and if there's another scandal a la Rev. Wright/Rezko, Hillary still may emerge the nominee -- with the path greased by the endorsement of key black leaders such as Jesse Jackson, Sheila Jackson Lee, and BET's Bob Johnson.

But I digress. Back to the veepstakes:

Pawlenty and Thune are too nondescript; there's already a lack of excitement in the McCain camp. Portman's too close to the Bush aristocracy. Jindal, as you concede, never was in it.

So once again, I offer up Mike Huckabee. He's enough of a conservative and a fundamentalist to satisfy the right. His enlightened positions on economics and his executive experience as a governor bode well for attracting independents, even some Dems who think Obama lacks sufficient experience. And he's something of a libertarian on the subject of Big Government and the intrusion of statism into the lives of everyday Americans.

Oh, yeah... he also plays the bass and is into '60s rock. Huckabee would add some much-needed excitement to an already stultified McCain campaign.

On the Dem side: If it's Barack (and I still say "if") he's not going to go with someone with an undisciplined tongue. That rules out a couple of much-discussed possibilities.

Reed is from a small state and he's nondescript. Bayh is too DLC, and as an ace b-baller, Obama doesn't need him to take Indiana.

Sebelius might work, but doesn't help shore up a base disillusioned with Obama's new-found pragmatism (what happened to "change you can count on"?)

Tim Kaine might work. He brings along Virginia, and he's got more maturity on him than Bayh, who scores too high on the "Opie" scale.

But there's a beter choice if it's Obama: Chris Dodd. Chairman of the Senate Banking Committee at a time when banks are failing. Staunch supporter of constitutional and civil rights at a time when Obama has displayed what some would say is unprincipled flip-flopping on issues such as FISA/wiretapping/telecomm immunity, gun control and expansion of the death penalty.

And Dodd excels in the role as trusted mentor and advisor -- the "adult supervision" factor. The big bonus: he's a devout but reformist Catholic in a year when the Dems need to hold onto centrists and keep at least some of the Reagan Democrats in the fold.

So, Chris, that's my contrarian view. Huckabee, Dodd -- and maybe even Hillary as the Democratic nominee.

I would then support Obama for vice president, giving him a chance at 16 years in the White House and time to learn the executive ropes; what's so bad about that?

With Obama hanging on to only a slim lead in the polls, and likely to slide some more going into the convention, I'm still looking for Hillary to save the party from what is shaping up to be a likely defeat -- at the hands of a dottering candidate who should be well behind at this stage of the game.


IF YOU CARE ABOUT DEMOCRACY, THE RULE OF LAW
AND THE RIGHT OF DUE PROCESS, CLICK BELOW:

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Posted by: scrivener | July 25, 2008 7:20 PM | Report abuse

If Obama can find a way to manage Bill, it's in his best interests to pick Hillary, IMO. Plus, there is no American leader more qualified to mediate and rejuvenate an Israel-Palestine peace process than Bill Clinton. A role as Middle East peace envoy would also keep Bill out of Washington. Obama just came back from a Middle East listening tour....

Bets anyone?

By the way, Chris, can I get one of those Fix shirts?

Posted by: Amy | July 25, 2008 6:58 PM | Report abuse

By the way, why does this blog always make the last word on our first line repeat as the first word on our second line? Isn't that something that can be fixed?

Posted by: mahmud010 | July 25, 2008 6:32 PM | Report abuse

CC, as you stated, Obama is running as a Washington outsider who is pushing a new kind of politics. Bayh, on the other hand, has "typical politician" written all over him. He is overly cautious whenever he speaks and doesn't come off as a very straightforward guy. Seriously, you have to see how this conflicts with Obama's message of a new kind of politics.

I believe Bobby Jindal has said he won't run on McCain's ticket. He wants to continue working in Louisiana for the time being. Maybe he will show up in four years to run against President Obama...

Also, how about making an entry on why certain people are not making your top five lists. Where is Bill Richardson, John Edwards, and Sam Nunn? Where is Mike Huckabee? There is even speculation about Joe Lieberman running on McCain's ticket. Why isn't he on the top five? It would be interesting to read your thoughts on why these people are not making the cut.

Posted by: mahmud010 | July 25, 2008 6:27 PM | Report abuse

Where is Mike Huckabee on the list of VP's for McCain? If McCain is trying to solidify his base then I think Huckabee is the best choice.

Obama should pick Kaine.

Posted by: JNoel002 | July 25, 2008 6:23 PM | Report abuse

Sorry, guys and gals I mean't Obama would win Virginia if he picked Kaine not McCain.

Posted by: Alex | July 25, 2008 6:11 PM | Report abuse

Dave writes
"[Gov Palin] is the once choice that could force Obama into picking someone he'd rather not pick."

Could be. But then, McCain supposedly won't announce until Obama announces. Not exactly the bold leadership we need right now...

Posted by: bsimon | July 25, 2008 6:09 PM | Report abuse

McCain can't pick Romney. The guy is the Republican John Kerry. McCain will lose Georgia, possibly South Carolina, and most likely North Carolina. Virginia would be lost. Why would McCain pick someone the GOP establishment wanted all along. It won't happen. Rob Portman is boring as you know what. McCain needs excitement. McCain I believe was going to give the job to Jindal, until Jindal said no thanks. Pawlenty is just a guy. He wouldn't be able to excite a group of monkeys. I think McCain will pick either Thune or Palin. Thune looks like a movie star. But he is another Senator and is white guy, but he has some charisma. Palin is attractive, smart, and tenacious but they would have to work with her communication skills. I noticed she has a habit of playing with a pencil somtimes and is not as comfortable when she is sitting at a desk giving briefings or debating other contenders. She is like George Bush in that regard, but she is a lot smarter.

I think Obama will pick either Sebelius or
Gov. Kaine. Obama likes to be around people he likes and trust. He would win Virginia if he picked McCain and Sebelius would strengthen his lead among women. I know you guys say that would be a slap in the face of Hillary voters but Obama likes to put people on the defensive. I think women in the Democratic Party would be in big trouble if Obama lost because he didn't receive enough of the women vote to pull him to victory when a female is on the ticket. So here is my prediction. McCain/Thune vs Obama/Sebelius.

Posted by: Alex | July 25, 2008 6:07 PM | Report abuse

Hope it's not Bayh. He may be the safe choice, but every time Obama starts "playing not to lose" he starts losing ground. Bayh seems more like a place-holder than a candidate.

Posted by: FlownOver | July 25, 2008 5:57 PM | Report abuse

I predict nobody on either list as VP. If McCain picks anyone on this list it will an exceedingly boring event. I think he needs some counterweight to the Obama enthusiasm and these folks are snoozers. Sure Romney knows about the economy but he was a disaster as a candidate on his own.

On the Dem side, two out of the five are eliminated right off the bat because they have not foreign policy experience. That is what Obama needs. I don't think you get it from Bayh either. I think Obama needs someone with military and foreign policy credentials.

Posted by: TG | July 25, 2008 5:40 PM | Report abuse

McCain's campaign has played the VEEP selection process well enough this week for people like Chris at The Fix to still be talking about it.

McCain's campaign will need some type of attention to win the newscycle after the Democratic Convention and before the start of the Republican Convention. With Ron Paul's movement of folks planning a separate demonstration in an 18,000 seat arena during the Republican Convention, Ron Paul may takeaway attention that McCain would be otherwise enjoying. Therefore I predict McCain will wait till after Obama announces his VP pick.

P.S. Take Piyush "Bobby" Jindal's name of the VEEP list. He was never seriously considered to be McCain's VEEP, plus FOX NEWS has already reported that Jindal has taken his name off of McCain's VP short list.

Posted by: Obama-Junkie | July 25, 2008 5:37 PM | Report abuse

Verasoie - Dang it, I knew Reed was too good to be true and too easy a choice. Oh well, back to the drawing board!

PG

Posted by: PeixeGato | July 25, 2008 5:22 PM | Report abuse

PG (and Chris),

It should be noted that the Governor of Rhode Island, where Jack Reed hails from, is a Republican, so if Obama were to pick him, he'd lose a Senate seat, at least for a while.

This places him in the same boat as Bayh, although with the Gubernatorial race going on there that race becomes a de facto Senate race if Bayh is picked.

On a separate note, Sebelius stands a good chance of running for the Senate in 2010, so don't count on her being part of any Obama cabinet.

Posted by: verasoie | July 25, 2008 5:15 PM | Report abuse

It won't be Bayh. Obama knows that if he chooses someone who voted for the war and defended that vote for years (till now--?), he'll be jettisoning one of his two biggest issues (with the economy) against McCain.

Posted by: Jay Gold | July 25, 2008 5:12 PM | Report abuse

McCain-Palin '08

Sarah Palin is a model conservative that the base will love, she is the most popular elected official in the nation, at 44 she is young but experienced, she has executive experience as governor of Alaska, she can legitimately argue for drilling in ANWR in a way that no other politican can refute, she is physically attractive, she has a son fighting in Afghanistan so she has a personal stake in the war, and she has an infant son with Down's syndrome so she can directly relate to other families that have to deal with special needs.

More importantly, by slecting her, it puts Obama in the position of reacting instead of McCain. Obama would have to seriously think about countering the move by picking Sebelius or Hillary, neither of which is a good choice for him. Alternatively, if he were to pick just another white guy, then he'd conceivably concede an important fraction of the women's vote to McCain.

I hope John McCain has really thought about this. Sarah Palin is the one VP choice who has the potential to turn the momentum of this election completely around. She is the one choice that will excite the Republican base in this election. She is the once choice that could force Obama into picking someone he'd rather not pick. She is the one choice who could actually make John McCain the 44th President of the United States.

Posted by: Dave | July 25, 2008 5:10 PM | Report abuse


▁▂▃▄▅▆▇█ OBAMA - LEAHY '08 █▇▆▅▄▃▂▁

Obama can certainly handle foreign affairs, and with Leahy, we get to exfoliate the repugs. I support this combo because it drives the repugs to bleed out their discharge shoots in fear (Congressional investigations with Executive Branch teeth...)

Posted by: angriestdogintheworld | July 25, 2008 5:09 PM | Report abuse

colmes is not insane. He is just a liberal, that's all.

Posted by: Anonymous | July 25, 2008 5:06 PM | Report abuse

by the way Chris

I think you handled yourself pretty well last night on Hannity. came across like a sane person in the asylum so to speak lol

Not an easy task I am sure.

Posted by: dl | July 25, 2008 5:02 PM | Report abuse

I agree

I think he is going to pick Romney.

Pawlenty has the whole bridge/infrastructure stuff that the press hasn't talked about yet...I really think would become a mess with the whole gas tax thing for someone who the country doesn't really know that well.

But after seeing McCain speak a few times in NH... I really think ...even if he didn't say it...he would vote for Obama ahead of Romney. I'm joking...but I am serious too. I think deep down...values-wise Obama is closer to Mccain than Romney believe it or not. Party or not.

Posted by: dl | July 25, 2008 4:55 PM | Report abuse

What about the argument that a McCain/Romney ticket could be one of flip floppers and fingers to the wind candidates... http://www.enewsreference.com

Posted by: eNews Reference | July 25, 2008 4:54 PM | Report abuse

PeixteGato writes
"The two men hated each other and had nothing but contempt for each other. But Kennedy saw that Johnson was his ticket to the WH."

But does McCain think that Romney is his ticket to the WH?

And if so, WHY?

Posted by: bsimon | July 25, 2008 4:54 PM | Report abuse

I don't think that the animosity between McCain and Romney would necessarily stop McCain from picking Romney. I mean look at Kennedy/Johnson. The two men hated each other and had nothing but contempt for each other. But Kennedy saw that Johnson was his ticket to the WH.

Politics makes for VERY strange bedfellows.

PG

Posted by: PeixeGato | July 25, 2008 4:50 PM | Report abuse

The funny thing is if the election were between Obama and Romney

McCain would vote for Obama. lol

Posted by: dl | July 25, 2008 4:46 PM | Report abuse

Keep dismissively insulting young voters, KOZ. Love it!

Posted by: Nisl | July 25, 2008 4:44 PM | Report abuse

shoot Chris

I take it back,,,
Governor Kaine is a lefty...lol

Reagan Bush Sr. lefties

Clinton Gore lefties

Obama Kaine would be lefties...

(cause you know McCain could pick a leftyand then Obama's got real trouble lol)

Just joshin'

Posted by: dl | July 25, 2008 4:43 PM | Report abuse

what about charlie crist-r
-------------------
Gay rumors aside, he is too liberal for the right wing.

Posted by: Anonymous | July 25, 2008 4:42 PM | Report abuse

While I don't agree with the Hanna Montana comment, at least the people who attend Obama's events are actually excited to be there, unlike the comatosed people at McCain's events.

PG

Posted by: Peixegato | July 25, 2008 4:41 PM | Report abuse

I don't see how Romney's supposed fundraising prowess comes into play as shortly after he would ostensibly be picked, the general election spending cap would limit the effect of any money he might be able to raise.

And no more Crist? And to think that he went and got himself engaged for nothing!

Posted by: verasoie | July 25, 2008 4:41 PM | Report abuse

don't underestimate the effect of "looks" when the entire campaign is being run like a Hannah Montana concert.

Posted by: kingofzouk | July 25, 2008 4:37 PM | Report abuse

I just want to add how frustrated I am that Sebelius is almost certainly going to get passed over because of angry former Clinton supporters. Having watched the various candidates in motion, it's my judgment that she is the best available talent (in terms of a combination of charisma, intelligence, and managerial ability) still under serious consideration by Obama. If, knock on wood, Obama were to win in 2008 and 2012, she's the strongest candidate for 2016 as well. I fear Bayh would be a replay of Gore all over again. How ironic that the hardcore feminists who comprise much of the PUMA crowd might cost themselves the first female president.

Bayh has good managerial ability, decent ability, and mediocre charisma.

Kaine is above average but unexceptional in all three categories, but is still wet behind the ears.

Biden is highly intelligent and experienced and usually charming, but also a gaffe machine.

I don't know much about Reed, but I understand he removed himself from consideration.

Posted by: Nissl | July 25, 2008 4:37 PM | Report abuse

what about charlie crist-r- and bill richardson-d?

Posted by: bruce2316 | July 25, 2008 4:36 PM | Report abuse

and one more...


Biden had a "slew" of bipartisan bills over the past two weeks.

and looked like a leader...

I love the commenter who calls Biden "stupid" and says "especially on foreign policy" yeah... stupid ...that is a word I'd use...just not for Biden...lol

Posted by: dl | July 25, 2008 4:35 PM | Report abuse

So is there any actual polling data that shows a significant bloc of Hillary voters (as disctinct from a few embittered activists) would be offended by Obama picking another woman?

Posted by: mike | July 25, 2008 4:35 PM | Report abuse

It might be shallow to think about the height difference between Reed and Obama, but I GUARANTEE you that if Reed were the pick, we'd see that very topic as a story on the news.

Unbelievable, ain't it?

PG

Posted by: PeixeGato | July 25, 2008 4:34 PM | Report abuse

▁▂▃▄▅▆▇█ OBAMA - LEAHY '08 █▇▆▅▄▃▂▁

Posted by: angriestdogintheworld | July 25, 2008 4:32 PM | Report abuse

and as shallow as this is

it won't be Reed because of that photo op this past week where they looked like a circus act standing on the stage together because of the height difference.

I know I know shallow...I am short guy myself but that height difference you have to admit looked like the old Kibbles and Bits commercial.

Posted by: Anonymous | July 25, 2008 4:30 PM | Report abuse

It will be great seeing all the clips of McCain and Romney go at each other. Portman makes the most sense, even if he's not a household name.

Not sure about Reed, Obama towers over him, not good for photo ops.

Posted by: Patrick NYC | July 25, 2008 4:30 PM | Report abuse

Chris

one more time

Hillary would come before Bayh.

I know you think other wise but...too milktoast...it's not what Obama needs.

He said too many things for Hillary and against obama in the primary...so if obama has hard feeling toward hillary... Bayh on that count might be lower on that count. I mean it's one thing to say something about the other candidate yuo are running against...it's totally different to be out actively working for someone else to suppress support and endorsements...which Bayh did against obama.

It's Biden...loud mouthed loose cannon or not...closer to Obama. Didn't endorse either after he dropped out.

and again...he has been the face (albeit foot in mouth on occasion) of the fight AGAINST all of these policies for the past 8 years.

I am not some big Biden supporter...just the facts and the numbers that people put up for Bayh and Kaine (oy...he is way off the mark...don't know where you are getting that one lol) ...

if it's not Biden

it's be Reed

if it's not Biden or Reed it'd be Hillary.

sorry Bayh is way down the list.

the dems tried the Prell model who brings a state...it's risky and hasn't worked since Al gore.

and that's only because there were two lefties on tthe ticket.

Posted by: dl | July 25, 2008 4:26 PM | Report abuse

As a Democrat, the only downsides to McCain picking Romney are that I might get too distracted going after Romney and that Romney might somehow actually become president, a prospect that makes me shudder

McCain is ultimately a person who wants the best for the country. Yes, he's wrong on foreign policy, he has virtually no ideas for domestic policy, and he's angry and dismissive. But I don't doubt that he is doing what he thinks is right.

The same cannot be said for Romney, and McCain drove that home repeatedly during the primary in a number of telegenic ways. We'll expose Romney for what he is if McCain gives us the opportunity.

Posted by: John M. | July 25, 2008 4:24 PM | Report abuse

OK, so as a political junkie, I'll have to say that I can't imagine Obama would risk losing a Senate seat by picking Bayh.

I think Sebilius suffers the unfortunate fate of being a woman OTHER than HRC this go 'round (but I believe we'll see much more of her in the future).

I think Jack Reed is a great choice. Great military creds, comes from a solid Dem state (no worry about losing the Senate seat), and he can eliminate any perceived Obama weakness in regards to the military. He doesn't have to be as "big" as Obama, he is the VP nominee, not the Co-Presidential nominee.

My concern with Tom Kaine is whether or not the Lt. Gov. in VA is a Repub or not.

With Biden, he is as about as "establishment Washington" as you can get. He's been there for over 30 years and it doesn't fit with Obama's message of a generational change in leadership. I see Biden serving in the Cabinet before I see him as VP.

Given this list, I see Jack Reed as the best choice. Now, let me go give Barack a call so I can let him know my decision, lol.

PG

Posted by: PeixeGato | July 25, 2008 4:23 PM | Report abuse

Thank you for the tidbit about Kaine, Dee.

Posted by: MoreAndBetterPolls | July 25, 2008 4:17 PM | Report abuse

Tim Kaine = abusive driver fees = 40% approvals = NoVA hates him = can't win Virginia = Tim Kaine is the next director of the EPA.

Posted by: Charlie | July 25, 2008 4:14 PM | Report abuse

mvalluri, why do you think Hillary would help in "tight states"? Have you seen specific polling or other data showing that she'd help Obama in some states? Or are you just assuming that she'd help because she got a lot of primary votes?

Posted by: Blarg | July 25, 2008 4:12 PM | Report abuse

I think this whole VeepStakes thing is WAY overblown. How many Americans can actually tell you what the official job of the VP is?

To me, its another story manufactured by a media that is thirsting for something to talk about. After all, people do love drama.

Each candidate will make their pick, the media will be all abuzz, yet nobody outside of us crazy political junkies will give it a second thought, especially with the Olympics looming.

PG

Posted by: PeixeGato | July 25, 2008 4:11 PM | Report abuse

I have not previously taken Thune seriously, but apparently his rep among his Senate colleagues is not bad. I think Portman brings more to McC than the others if actually being a heartbeat away from the presidency is the first consideration.

I am dubious as to whether anyone but MDH ["Huck" to those who have forgotten his three initials] will help McC win the election.

Posted by: MarkInAustin | July 25, 2008 4:10 PM | Report abuse

McCain is nuts if he picks Romney. The fact that, once again he is shown NOT to trust the instincts that made him popular can hardly help him, plus the kind of economic "heft" that Romney is supposed to provide may prove to be of little comfort to Republicans increasingly concerned that their party really doesn't care about the little guy. I have come to believe that McCain really doesn't have a "safe" choice which fact just MAY embolden him to do something truly unexpected. By that reasoning, Huckabee would actually be a brilliant choice. It might also throw Obama's team off guard.

As for Obama, it may not matter much WHO he picks unless he picks someone who turns out not to be ready to step in. Obama can't rely upon a VP choice to give his campaign foreign policy gravitas; he has to convince voters that HE has the gravitas. A great VP choice may reinforce that impression, but won't, by itself "seal the deal." That logic would seem to favor Tim Kaine.

Posted by: dch | July 25, 2008 4:09 PM | Report abuse

I think the choices on either side are fairly dull. The charismatic and statesmanlike Obama makes all the others, including McCain, invisible in comparison.

That said I think McCain will pick Romney (the walking Ken Doll)to try to win back some radical right-wing enthusiasm. The other GOP choices on this list have no oomph at all on the national scene.

Obama will go with either Biden (whom he admires) or Bayh (whose sway in Indiana he needs). Kaine will do his best work for Obama if he sticks to Virginia as Governor and works hard to bring that state into the Democratic column in November.

(Kaine is personally warm with Obama because he was one of the earliest elected officials to vigorously and whole-heartedly endorse Obama, back when Hillary Clinton was all the rage. Also, it turns out that Kaine's ancestors come from the same tiny Kansas town as Obama's grandparents, so that was a striking coincidence that early endeared each to the other.)

Posted by: dee | July 25, 2008 4:08 PM | Report abuse

One of the things about Biden that tends to get overlooked is that he is an idiot. Sometimes what he says is just blandly idiotic, like on foreign policy. Sometimes Biden is spectacularly idiotic, like plagarizing a British politician while at the same time lying, or getting hair implants, or saying that Obama is the first black presidential candidate that is "articulate and clean." I guess Jesse J and Shirley Chisholm were too slovenly for him.

Posted by: renu1 | July 25, 2008 4:01 PM | Report abuse

No Hillary?

Obama needs her for the tight states.

Posted by: mvalluri | July 25, 2008 3:59 PM | Report abuse

McCain needs to pick Romney. Anyone else will simply not do.

Posted by: George | July 25, 2008 3:55 PM | Report abuse

No Ridge? I think mccain could get away with picking ridge if he committed himself to serving one term, ditto ridge + ridge would need to pull a cheney and pledge to not run for prez in 2012. I do think romney is best veep pick for mccain among the top 5+ the fact mccain doesn't like him, true or not who knows but its cw, i think helps romney. Why cause, you don't need to dig much to find a lot of repubs that have been pretty harsh with mccain in the past, thus if mccain shows outreach and picks romney, who he doesn't like, the former harsh anti mccain repubs might want to play ball with him. Contrast that theme with mccain snubbing romney and all the folks who rec'd him for veep and picking one of his backers like pawlenty, kinda of a slap in the face + don't think pawlenty brings the $'s nor Minnesota let alone another state.

As for obama, don't know why he didn't vet rendell, vilsack, or bob kerrey. Bayh hands down tops the top 5. It would be the midwest version of clinton/gore...right down to gore and bayh having gone to the same boring high school and having their dad's serve in the senate...maybe REM can replace fleetwood mac and go with the its the end of the world as we know it theme...after all obama does bring change while bayh is the safety blanket for the DC class to hold onto going into the obama administration much like gore was to clinton and 41 was to reagan...hmmm a pattern that worked.

Posted by: blue | July 25, 2008 3:53 PM | Report abuse

bsimon - I think I am coming down with the Dem syndrome - the point in the election cycle where you cry out - "How can we be losing to this nitwit". Poor old McCain. can't even beat the preK kandidate. except he just might.

Posted by: kingofzouk | July 25, 2008 3:50 PM | Report abuse

badger- I agree. The Fix put Bayh at the top as the 'safest pick'. I think that immediately disqualifies him from the top slot, but I don't live inside the beltway.

McCain needs to create some buzz, but will probably go with someone perceived as safe like Pawlenty or Romney.

Posted by: bsimon | July 25, 2008 3:42 PM | Report abuse

Why is Gov. Kaine considered to have "the closest personal relationship to Obama"?

Perhaps someone will explain this from a fact based position.

Considering the choice assignments that first Sen. Lugar (who took Sen. Obama to Moscow and gave him a cosponsorship of an important bipartisan bill as a gift when he was a rookie) and then Sen. Biden (who made Sen. Obama Chair of the Euro subcommittee in Obama's second year) gave to Sen. Obama, one wonders how Gov. Kaine could be closer than his mentors.

Further, when Sen. Obama has been directly and properly accused of never holding a meeting on that subcommittee, Sen. Biden has come to his rescue and said that Euro meetings were held by the Foreign Relations Committee "as a whole".

One wonders what cover Gov. Kaine has ever provided to Sen. Obama.

Does anyone have facts to offer?

Posted by: MoreAndBetterPolls | July 25, 2008 3:38 PM | Report abuse

FORGOT TIM KAINE: A GOOD CHOICE FOR THE O-MAN.

Oops. Forgot Tim Kaine. Would be a wise choice for Obama (again: if it's Obama and not an insurgent Hillary). Might win him Virginia and more independents and Republicans that someone like Bayh, whom I regard as a non-starter.

And Kaine's got maturity, something that the boyish Bayh doesn't deliver with his high "Opie" score.

Posted by: scrivener | July 25, 2008 3:37 PM | Report abuse

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[][]--[][]--[][][][][]--[][]--[][]--[][]-- OBAMA - LEAHY '08 â„¢ --[][]
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Posted by: angriestdogintheworld | July 25, 2008 3:35 PM | Report abuse

So McCain wants to put bin Ladin on trial. First, as an old cookbook recipe has it, you have to catch him.

Posted by: NoVA | July 25, 2008 3:34 PM | Report abuse

Maybe you're more tied in than the rest of us, but Bayh seems like a pretty bad pick. If he wins Democrats lose his senate seat, thanks to Mitch Daniels and may not get it back. Plus he not only voted for the Iraq War and Kyl-Lieberman, but was a co-chair of the Committee for the Liberation of Iraq with John McCain and Joe Lieberman.

How is it safe to pick a running mate who undermines your own fundamental arguments about judgment and leadership? (i.e. getting the Iraq War right) Wouldn't McCain exploit the hell out of that? Wouldn't the VP debate become an inevitable embarrassment?

Posted by: Badger | July 25, 2008 3:32 PM | Report abuse

I'm sure I'll be eating my words once it happens, but my guess is that the VP pick -- on either side -- will not take up days of coverage as Chris predicts here. I think each one will be a total anticlimax.

Those of us who care about this have learned an enormous amount about each leading contender already, so there will be little new biographical backgrounder news. Those who don't care, won't care then either.

This leaves stories about the politics of the selection process and who else ALMOST got chosen; how the chosen one successfully dodged reporters before the announcement; and how the two families and candidates get along extraordinarily well -- much like all previously announced presidential tickets.

Do you see that as dominating the coverage in the same way as Obama's first-of-its-kind world tour and all of its news coups? I really don't. We've seen all these stories before, and by this point we've met all the contenders. I suppose the one new type of story this time will be how the VP pick by Obama, no matter who it is, is seen as a deliberate and intolerable insult by diehard Clinton supporters. But I almost feel I've read that one several times already, too.

Posted by: Fairfax Voter | July 25, 2008 3:30 PM | Report abuse

Chris, I'll bet you (a SoonerThought t-shirt if I lose--I get a Fix t-shirt if I win) that Biden will be picked over Bayh. If neither is picked, no harm no foul! Obama/Biden '08!

Posted by: Soonerthought.Blogspot.Com | July 25, 2008 3:26 PM | Report abuse

HUCKABEE AND DODD MAKE MUCH MORE SENSE

(AND LOOK OUT FOR A HILLARY CONVENTION COUP!)

Picking the Mormon Romney could lose McCain just enough votes to swing the race to Obama or will it be Hillary Clinton for the Dems?

That's right, Chris. You can't rule out a second coming of Billary. I still think there's an 11th-hour putsch in the works.

If in the final analysis, Obama's foreign jaunt looks more like showboating than statecraft, and if there's another scandal a la Rev. Wright/Rezko, Hillary still may emerge the nominee -- with the path greased by the endorsement of key black leaders such as Jesse Jackson, Sheila Jackson Lee, and BET's Bob Johnson.

But I digress. Back to the veepstakes:

Pawlenty and Thune are too nondescript; there's already a lack of excitement in the McCain camp. Portman's too close to the Bush aristocracy. Jindal, as you concede, never was in it.

So once again, I offer up Mike Huckabee. He's enough of a conservative and a fundamentalist to satisfy the right. His enlightened positions on economics and his executive experience as a governor bode well for attracting independents, even some Dems who think Obama lacks sufficient experience. And he's something of a libertarian on the subject of Big Government and the intrusion of statism into the lives of everyday Americans.

Oh, yeah... he also plays the bass and is into '60s rock. Huckabee would add some much-needed excitement to an already stultified McCain campaign.

On the Dem side: If it's Barack (and I still say "if") he's not going to go with someone with an undisciplined tongue. That rules out a couple of much-discussed possibilities.

Reed is from a small state and he's nondescript. Bayh is too DLC, and as an ace b-baller, Obama doesn't need him to take Indiana.

Sibelius might work, but doesn't help shore up a base disillusioned with Obama's new-found pragmatism (what happened to "change you can count on"?)

That leaves -- Chris Dodd. Chairman of the Senate Banking Committee at a time when banks are failing. Staunch supporter of constitutional and civil rights at a time when Obama has displayed what some would say is unprincipled flip-flopping on issues such as FISA/wiretapping/telecomm immunity, gun control and expansion of the death penalty.

And Dodd excels in the role as trusted mentor and advisor -- the "adult supervision" factor. The big bonus: he's a devout but reformist Catholic in a year when the Dems need to hold onto centrists and keep at least some of the Reagan Democrats in the fold.

So, Chris, that's my contrarian view. Huckabee, Dodd -- and maybe even Hillary as the Democratic nominee.

I would then support Obama for vice president, giving him a chance at 16 years in the White House and time to learn the executive ropes; what's so bad about that?

With Obama hanging on to only a slim lead in the polls, and likely to slide some more going into the convention, I'm still looking for Hillary to save the party from what is shaping up to be a likely defeat -- at the hands of a dottering candidate who should be well behind at this stage of the game.


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Posted by: scrivener | July 25, 2008 3:21 PM | Report abuse

"McCain's best strategy is to let Obama self destruct."

Poor guy can't help himself. McCain was his own worst enemy this week - scheduling a flight to an oil platform with a hurricane coming. Whoops!

His whole "Obama would rather lose a war to win an election" claim was pretty tasteless - and has the potential to be McCAin's own self-destruction. If his people want to crucify Gen Clark for discounting McCAin's POW status as a presidential qualifier, they ought not tread in the same waters themselves.

Posted by: bsimon | July 25, 2008 3:19 PM | Report abuse

The big shocker would be if Romney wasn't picked as Veep.

As for the Dems, Biden would be the perfect choice if he could just learn to shut up...

http://www.political-buzz.com/

Posted by: matt | July 25, 2008 3:10 PM | Report abuse

McCain's best strategy is to let Obama self destruct. His vacuuousness is becoming apparent to all but the most moonbattiest. One can't survive on shallow speeches forever, I hope.

Posted by: kingofzouk | July 25, 2008 3:03 PM | Report abuse

"The key for McCain in terms of timing is to avoid looking reactive to Obama and thus reinforcing the idea that Obama is the prime mover in the contest."

Hard to do change that now. His whole week was reactive. The press corps bent over backwards accomodating his complaint that Obama was getting all the coverage. What does he expect? Obama was making news, McCain was eating Bratwurst. Now the McCain campaign is apparently worried that they won't get a suitable boost from a VP pick during the Olympics. Perhaps this is indicative of how dire the straits they're in really are.

Posted by: bsimon | July 25, 2008 2:59 PM | Report abuse

So why hasn't Obama closed the deal? Most national polls show Obama ahead -- but by margins so thin it can hardly give comfort to the putative front-runner. The latest NBC/Wall Street Journal poll of registered voters puts Obama up only six points overall, while the more reliable polls of likely voters -- the Rasmussen tracking poll and the ABC/Washington Post poll -- put it at a statistical tie within the margin of error. And Obama is losing his advantage in key battleground states.

A new Quinnipiac poll of likely voters for the Washington Post and Wall Street Journal found Obama losing eight points over his previous poll numbers a month earlier in Minnesota, dropping five points in Colorado and two points in both Michigan and Wisconsin. McCain has pulled ahead of Obama in Colorado, is within the margin of error in Minnesota, and is in striking distance in Michigan. Of the four key states, only in Wisconsin, where Obama's numbers went down slightly but McCain's didn't go up, is Obama comfortably ahead of McCain by 11 points.

Posted by: a funny thing happened on the way to the coronation | July 25, 2008 2:56 PM | Report abuse

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