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The Running Mate

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U.S. Assistant Attorney General Tom Perez stands as President Barack Obama (not pictured) introduces him to be his next labor secretary, at the White House in Washington, March 18, 2013. Before joining the Justice Department in 2009, Perez was Maryland's labor secretary. If confirmed by the Senate, he will replace Hilda Solis, who resigned in January. REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst (UNITED STATES - Tags: POLITICS HEADSHOT) - RTR3F5QC

I explore some of the most frequently mentioned potential running mates for Clinton here. In summary:

  • Brown: this is a ridiculously bad idea, and it’s odd so many political scientists didn’t identify the obvious downside.
  • Castro: Meh.
  • Warren: Maybe, although Massachusetts Dems better have something better than Coakley III: The Revenge of the Fundamentals in mind.
  • Perez: Sounds great to me.
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  • Matt McIrvin

    As far as I know, if we have to replace Warren, we’ve got nothin’. The chances of the Republicans winning another special election are not that low–the Massachusetts Trumpists turn out.

    • thequeso

      I know he wants to take a break to make some $$$, but Patrick?

      • Matt McIrvin

        Hmm, I was thinking of him more as a vice-presidential contender than as replacement Mass. Senator. But maybe he’d do it.

    • tomscud

      Would Deval Patrick want back in? Oops, what he/she ^^ said.

      • ThrottleJockey

        I think Patrick or Castro would be the ideal choices–especially for maintaining Obama’s coalition.

        • Charlie S

          If Trump doesn’t maintain the coalition, nothing will.

          • ThrottleJockey

            Love trumps fear. You think blacks are going to turn out against Trump like they turned out for Obama?

            • Charlie S

              Perez as a VP choice is not quite the same message of love, so yes, in this case fear is more important.

            • njorl

              It’s hard to say how much effect Obama had on black turnout. It had been rising rapidly since 1996.

              1996 53.0%
              2000 56.8% +3.8%
              2004 60.0% +3.2%
              2008 64.7% +4.7%
              2012 66.2% +1.5%

              The biggest jump was 2008, but the smallest jump was 2012. It’s possible that it would have hit a lower ceiling without Obama, but there isn’t enough data to argue that convincingly. It’s possible that Obama merely accelerated a process which will not reverse (though I don’t think it will get much higher).

        • Matt McIrvin

          I think Tom and thequeso were talking about Patrick running for Warren’s Senate slot. But Patrick as running mate would work too. Maybe better.

          • tomscud

            Pulling a guy straight from Bain Capital to the VP seat would not make the Sanders contingent super happy.

        • efgoldman

          I think Patrick or Castro would be the ideal choices

          It was widely reported before his term as governor was over, that Patrick’s wife really wanted out of politics. Maybe things are different now. Would certainly be an excellent choice, and an excellent start to a new Democratic bench.
          Wonder if he could afford the pay cut?
          One of the RI senators (Reed, Whitehouse) would be a good choice too, and the replacement would be named by a Democratic governor (even though Loomis can’t stand her.)

      • JonH

        He’s no Warren. He wouldn’t be nearly as effective.

        • JonH

          Also he has a really wimpy voice.

          • Matt McIrvin

            True; I remember a friend of mine comparing Patrick’s voice to the late Garry Shandling’s.

    • Gregor Sansa

      I trust that if Warren accepts the VP slot, it will be because she has somebody suitable in mind. My knowledge of state politics isn’t enough to know who, but with over 200 state and federal legislators in the state, there must be somebody who’s shown some moxy.

      • The Lorax

        What about Joe from Lowell?

    • Lev

      Capuano?

      As I’ve said many times before, MA Dems backing Coakley over Capuano in ’09 was the political equivalent of Brock for Broglio.

      • efgoldman

        Capuano?

        Seth Moulton is a star in the making.

        • Malaclypse

          Maybe, but he’ll hold that seat forever, and before him it was held by a thread, and only kept away from a Tea Partier because of a Libertarian spoiler.

      • Matt McIrvin

        Yeah, maybe Capuano.

    • Greg

      There’s a Kennedy in the House. If he wants to run for the seat held by two of his great uncles, I think he’s got a pretty strong chance.

    • DrDick

      We need Warren in the Senate, period. The VP position is largely powerless and a political dead end. Not where we want a highly effective progressive politician. Sanders is a poor choice for both the reasons Scott Mentions and because he is also an effective senator with a strong record. I do not know anything about Perez, but from this he sounds like a good choice.

    • bernard

      Yes.

      I can see Baker winning the seat, for example.

  • I’m more interested in Trump’s running mate. It would have to be someone who is willing to accept the honor. It would be desirable for the person not to be a maniac. Since the Venn diagram overlap between the two is extremely small, the second criterion will probably need to be relaxed. So who could it be?

    • Over/under on the number of times he’s asked Ivanka if she’s interested?

      • socraticsilence

        I feel like there’s so, so many inappropriate ways to go with this prompt that hopefully pointing it out kills my desire to do so.

      • Snarki, child of Loki

        “Over/under on the number of times he’s asked Ivanka if she’s interested?”

        Interested in *what*, exactly?

        No wait, better off not knowing.

    • brad

      Newt, Christie, or maybe Sessions.

      • A major advantage for Christie is that he has already been thoroughly humiliated and subjugated, so that process can be skipped. He also broadens the ticket’s appeal to include people who are attracted to vulgar bullies and simplistic world views. Oh wait . . .

        • efgoldman

          A major advantage for Christie is that he has already been thoroughly humiliated and subjugated

          Not as much as if he’s indicted, or even named as an unindicted co-conspirator. When are the Bridgegate trials/guilty pleas supposed to start?
          Of course, since Combover Caligula is making the choice and listening to nobody….

          • weirdnoise

            That’s just one more reason for Trump to choose him. It will give him even more ammunition for his campaign against the “elites” conspiring against him..

    • NewishLawyer

      Chris Christie seems to have perfectly gone into his role as Trump’s office boy and lackey. This makes sense, he is awed by the bigger bully.

      • N__B

        I thought Chrispie wanted A.G.

        • ThrottleJockey

          Why be AG when you can be next in line to inherit the throne? The last 2 GOP VP nominees have seen their careers soar.

          • rea

            Particularly since Trump would be the oldest person ever to take office as president, and doesn’t look all that healthy.

            • Paul Chillman

              Nonsense, we have official medical certification that Trump is the healthiest person ever to run for president!

          • sharculese

            The benefits to being the nominee are far less than Palin and Ryan, both of whom were relative unknowns. One of my roommates at the time, a relatively well-informed person, needed me to explain to her exactly what was so exciting about the idea of Ryan and Romney’s running mate.

            By contrast, people who don’t really even follow politics know who Christie is at this point, and they know they don’t like him. Tailing Trump around the country does nothing to fix that.

            • so-in-so

              Would either Trump or Christie recognize your last point? I can’t imagine either of them thinking they aren’t widely admired, if not loved.

              Now the “1776” bit about “obnoxious and disliked” is running through my head.

              • sharculese

                Oh sure, I would totally believe that they don’t recognize the folly in it, I was just rebutting TJ’s point that running for VP is in Christie’s interest.

      • Karen24

        The parallels to Spiro Agnew are beautiful, although I think Christie probably lost any chance at higher GOP positions by recognizing that the Feds were useful during Hurricane Sandy.

        • ThrottleJockey

          He can make that up by really hating on the Latins.

      • STH

        I read somewhere recently that some Trump spokesbot was saying that Trump was going to choose someone who would be able to do the parts of the Prez job that Trump “doesn’t want to do.” So being Veep could be a pretty powerful position, which may explain why Christie is so eager to grovel for it.

        • so-in-so

          Which is pretty much all the “work” parts of the job.

          He may like flying around and meeting other world leaders – maybe he would have been a better VP for a real politician.

        • bobbo1

          Dick Cheney, in a heartbeat. Or should I say “heart” beat.

    • Snarki, child of Loki

      “I’m more interested in Trump’s running mate.”

      It might be the first time in history that a ‘full-length mirror’ was nominated for office.

      Magic 8-ball sez: “seven years of bad luck, maybe eight”

    • dmsilev

      I’m more interested in Trump’s running mate. It would have to be someone who is willing to accept the honor horror.

      Fixed that for you.

      • I gotta say, when I first read that comment, I thought that’s what it actually said.

    • Incontinentia Buttocks

      Our governor, here in Oklahoma, Mary Fallin, might just fit the bill. She’s an idiot. But by contemporary GOP standards she’s not a maniac, though she’s certainly an ideologue. And I’m pretty sure she’d leap at the opportunity.

    • Lev

      I really think it has to be Newt. As a longtime purveyor of bigotry, media disdain and let’s not forget that he’s the prototypical stupid person’s idea of a smart person, he’s just perfect for Trump.

      Also, let’s not forget that Christie has on occasion spoken out against Islamophobia, which would seem to undercut Trump’s main campaign theme.

    • Greg

      Paul LePage is the kind of person is both minimally qualified on paper and enough of a maniac to actually be willing to take the job.

    • Lost Left Coaster

      Ben Carson. He is a self-deluded narcissistic grifter, so their personalities are compatible, as long as he’s willing to take his marching orders from Trump (and I think he will be). Also, I think that even the most fringe Republican politicians are starting to realize how much of a career killer a veep run under Trump will be.

      • Snarki, child of Loki

        Ben Carson would be Trump’s Brain Trust.

        He’d have them stored in his man-sized safe.

    • ASV

      Pledged delegates are only pledged on the presidential ballot, right? So it’s presumably going to have to be someone that the party regulars can actually agree to. This could be the source of some pretty major shenanigans in Cleveland.

    • Kalil

      My money is on George Zimmerman. He brings demographic appeal (he’s hispanic, dontchyaknow), while doubling down on the central tenet of the candidacy (hatred for brown people), and he’s an ‘ordinary guy’ to counter the establishment elitism of Hillary’s ticket. Also, he’s misogynistic and stupid. What’s not to love?

      • rm

        For the first time, the Secret Service would be there to protect the crowd from the candidate.

      • Colin Day

        Ineligible. He was born on 10/5/1983.

    • JMV Pyro

      I think it will be Rick Scott. He’s from Florida, a fellow grifter, and has been gunning for the position for awhile.

      • What does he bring to the ticket? Trump already has the human/snake hybrid demo locked up.

        • JMV Pyro

          You’re assuming Trump is approaching this with anything approaching sense or logic.

    • njorl

      I can’t believe it will be anyone with a reliable political future ahead of them. So washed up people like Newt or obviously damaged people like Christie. Maybe there’s a term-limited Republican governor from a state with two Republican senators who are nowhere near retirement. That’s the only way I see him getting a running mate who isn’t a liability.

    • Brett

      It’ll be someone he can dominate, who is also a hard-line conservative Republican to appease the evangelical crowd. I’m betting on a governor from the South, not sure which one.

  • NewishLawyer

    I am very strong on the idea that Warren should remain in the Senate. That seems to be the arena where she can have the most influence in changing policy. She is a born legislator. I’d like her to chair the finance committee.

    Perez sounds like a great choice for VP.

    • CP

      Agree on Warren. Leave her where she is.

      • Gregor Sansa

        She’s great as a legislator. She’d also be great in the executive branch, helping run the cabinet. And she’d be more than great as a campaigner against Trump; the pleasure of seeing him melt down as he realizes he’s losing to two [insert misogynist slur]s would be delicious.

        As a MA resident, I’d be willing to hand her upwards.

      • Pat

        It’s also useful to have progressives outside the Administration who can help guide and explain whatever process is chosen to try to pass and implement new goals. Especially if they are people that liberal activists trust and like.

        All sausage making is compromise – Warren’s utility may be to help the compromises work by bringing liberal activists on board. Which is easier if she’s not the one doing the compromising.

    • ThrottleJockey

      I don’t understand the love for Perez. Do we want someone whose never held elected office to be the next one up for the gig? Politics–as Trump has proven–isn’t for amateurs. Its a skill set that requires cultivation and I don’t think VP is suitable for On the Job Training. Let him be a Gov or Sen first.

      • Wapiti

        I see Perez as VP as a solid bureaucrat to serve as caretaker for the remainder of the term if something were to happen to the President. If there had been more contenders for the nomination, I could see one of the also-rans getting the position, but O’Malley fizzled and Sanders doesn’t seem compatible or suitable for the VP slot.

        In my view it is better to use a non-competitor/non-competitive politician/bureaucrat as VP, than to elevate a politician to heir-apparent. It means that we’ll have a contested primary in eight years, but I think primaries are good for the publicity and for re-examining party goals and stands.

        • Gregor Sansa

          Agree on the contested primary. Note that Warren also leads to a contested primary in 2024.

        • sharculese

          O’Malley fizzled

          Whereas Joe Biden covered himself in glory in the ’08 primary?

          • Wapiti

            True enough. He dropped after the first round?

            • sharculese

              He dropped out well before the first round: http://www.cnn.com/2007/POLITICS/01/31/biden.obama/

              Funnily enough, search for “Joe Biden clean articulate” on google made it suggest that maybe I was trying to search JfL’s blog.

              • Lev

                Biden did a decent job in 2008. The media didn’t give half a damn about him, but “To Rudy Giuliani a sentence is a noun, a verb, and 9/11” is one of the top political burns of all time, and I have to think helped to turn the tide from “Rudy Giuliani is a national hero” to “Rudy Giuliani is a laughingstock.” (Though, admittedly, his strategy of “I’m going to lose six states then win Florida” also helped…)

              • Thom

                Where is JfL? He seems to be missing, unless I am just not reading enough comments.

                • sharculese

                  He’s missing. My hope is that he realized he was getting a little too heated about the primary and he’s taking a breather.

                • efgoldman

                  My hope is that he realized he was getting a little too heated about the primary and he’s taking a breather.

                  He said as much, but well down in a stupidly argumentative approaching-a-TBogg-unit thread, easy to miss.

        • ochospantalones

          It’s tough because there are competing impulses here. On the one hand, I absolutely agree that it is better to not have the VP be a presidential nominee-in-waiting. On the other hand, I think state-wide campaign experience is important for the general election and having served in elected office is important for taking over as president in a crisis.

          Biden was a great pick because he managed to thread the needle. I am not sure who fits that bill this time, as most of the senators and governors seem like they would be positioning themselves as future nominees.

      • PotemkinMetropolitanRegion

        Perez has handled a lot of high profile labor negotiations, presided over the enactment of a lot of progressive DOL rules, and ramped up wage theft enforcement (which will look good against bilker extraordinaire Trump). And from the media appearances I’ve seen, he strikes me as super sharp, charismatic, and capable of attacking the right. I think he’d be great.

        • Cassiodorus

          Perez is someone who seems like an odd choice until you hear him speak. Then it makes perfect sense.

        • Isn’t he a New Yorker though? Maybe he could register to vote in Wyoming

          • Hogan

            Marylander.

      • efc

        He’s been the executive of a huge federal department. He has the chops as a leader. Isn’t most of the other stuff just good delegation and hiring the right people? Anyway, he has way more executive experience than Obama did in 2008.

      • sharonT

        Perez is from Maryland and his chance for a Senate seat in the next decade is slim. Here in the free state, we tend to hold on to our senators for life. Senator McKulski is finally retiring after 30 years. Next guy in line will probably hold the seat for. Another 25 years.

        He’d have to battle a number of county-executives and possibly the Comptroller for the governor’s slot on the Democratic side. So, no, if he’s interested in a promotion I, it’s either the VP or move to another state.

  • brad

    The link for Perez in the piece seems not to go where intended, it’s about the Orlando shooting reaction and there’s no mention of him.

  • sneezehonestly

    The current vice president seems to be doing a decent job. Why not just stick with him (assuming he’s willing)? No one else has a proven track record of actually being good at being the vice president, and the more that Clinton embraces Obama’s legacy, the better off she is.

    • Rob in CT

      I mean, Joe’s fine and all but he is 73.

    • ASV

      No one else has a proven track record of actually being good at being the vice president

      I’m not sure what this actually entails, but Al Gore is available.

      • CD

        Mike Dukakis is rested and ready.

        • Malaclypse

          When, exactly, was Dukakis Vice President?

    • Jackdaw

      Heck, get Obama himself to be her VP!

      • tomscud

        Can’t be VP since he’s constitutionally ineligible to be president (again).

      • Malaclypse

        Nah, he needs to be on the Supreme Court to take Scalia’s place.

  • No Longer Middle Aged Man

    Someone from midwest, west or industrial belt. Better a governor than someone from Washington. Not Brown! Castro comes across a bit too much like a Democratic version of Rubio. Perez is better but I can’t get enthused about someone whose highest elective office is county council.

    • ThrottleJockey

      What’s wrong with Brown???

      And what’s up with the Castro hate? Rubio is vapid. Castro is smart. And he’s from Texas. Could you imagine him being VP and then later running for President. We could win Califoria & Texas–game over Baby!

      • Presumably the same thing as Warren: every seat matters. He’s a senator in a state with a Republican governor who will almost certainly appoint a Republican replacement.

        • Linnaeus

          In a similar vein, this is why I didn’t understand why Obama, for example, picked Kathleen Sebelius for HHS secretary when she was governor of a state where it’s really hard to elect Democrats and is now a basket case under Republican misrule.

          • Thrax

            …and would have been a very strong Senate candidate too.

            • Linnaeus

              Possibly also true of Janet Napolitano, another Democratic governor of a Republican state that Obama picked for a cabinet position.

              • Charlie S

                No way on Napolitano. Her tenure as President of the UC system has been a bit of a disaster.

              • ThrottleJockey

                He had to have somebody to work for him…and he also wanted some faces who came from red states.

              • MattT

                I think in one or both of those cases, they were about to be term limited out in the near future, so those were a lot more defensible than poaching from the Senate.

          • Mac the Knife

            I always assumed Sebelius and Napolitano must have had higher Value Over Replacement in the Cabinet than in their old jobs, but I could never wrap my mind around how that was possible.

            Or, staffing your cabinet is so important that it carries more weight than such considerations. Not so much the case for a VP pick.

            • Charlie S

              Sebelius overaw the roll out of Obamacare, which was initially a fiasco. She won’t be the choice.

            • CD

              Both were blunders. I think this is widely recognized now.

        • efgoldman

          He’s a senator in a state with a Republican governor who will almost certainly appoint a Republican replacement.

          Cross out the “almost” in that sentence. Guaranteed to be a lost seat.
          There’s nothing at all wrong with Brown as a person or a candidate, it’s just the arithmetic and political reality.

          • Us law talkin’ guys are trained to avoid absolutes wherever possible. I agree with you in principal though.

      • notahack

        Evidence that Castro is smart? The Politico profile on him a few months ago makes him sound like someone who doesn’t give a shit about policy or actually doing his job.

        http://www.politico.com/story/2016/01/julian-castro-possible-vice-president-218119

        • ThrottleJockey

          He went to Stanford. Smart enough for me. Plus, we’re going to believe Seventeen-On-the-Potomac?

          • He was interviewed on NPR a few weeks back. He did not impress.

            Also,that’s “Tiger Beat” buster. Are you not aware of all internet traditions?

            • ThrottleJockey

              LOL, am I dating myself?

              • Karen24

                Mostly demonstrating you were never a teenaged girl. Tiger Beat was the particularly dim fan magazine featuring “Win A Dream Date With The Hudson Brothers” or “David Cassidy’s Favorite Foods.” ‘Seventeen’ is a fashion magazine and the gateway drug for Vogue and Glamour.

          • Lev

            Dubya went to Harvard and Yale.

            • Lost Left Coaster

              Yeah, that pretty much killed the “John Doe went to Ivy League U, so he must be smart” line for me for all eternity.

              • Yeah, that pretty much killed the “John Doe went to Ivy League U, so he must be smart” line for me for all eternity.

                That was already substantially clear to me after about a week of my undergraduate education at an Ivy League university. After teaching at two others I had no doubt.

                On the other hand, I do believe that if J. Doe went to MIT, s/he’s almost certainly smart.

              • efgoldman

                Yeah, that pretty much killed the “John Doe went to Ivy League U, so he must be smart” line for me for all eternity.

                I give you asshole Tom Cotton and Tailgunner Teddy Cruz.

                • njorl

                  Ted Cruz isn’t stupid. Evil? Socially repugnant? Sure, but he’s not stupid.

          • twbb

            Trump went to Wharton. George W. Bush went to Yale and Harvard. Hell, Pat Robertson went to Yale.

            • Greg

              But Stanford has standards….

              • bobbo1

                They wash their hands after they piss.

                • …whether they’ve already wet them or not!

                • Hogan

                  We’re bringing the war back home
                  Where it ought to have been before!
                  We’ll kill all the bees and spiders and flies
                  And we won’t play in iceboxes lying on their sides
                  We’ll wash our hands after wee-wee.
                  And if we’re a girl, before!
                  And we’ll march, march, march, et cet’ra!
                  ‘Til we never do march no more!

          • MyNameIsZweig

            I live in San Francisco. I am surrounded by Stanford grads. A fair number of them are idiots.

      • osceola

        The Castro brothers are overrated, mostly because the Texas Democratic Party’s got nuthin’. No bench? Shit, they can’t even fill out the lineup card.

        The Castros have been successful at the local level (San Antonio), but starting to get national interest.

        It would also help if they didn’t look so young you’d think their First Holy Communion was last year.

        • twbb

          “It would also help if they didn’t look so young you’d think their First Holy Communion was last year.”

          Yes, this.

        • mongolia

          would also help if they were native Spanish speakers. I’d personally be a little offended if I was part of an ethnic minority population, and our most visible national politician of our heritage had to learn the language in his 40’s – not enough to not vote for him, mind you, but could lead to a little lagging of enthusiasm that might otherwise be expected.

          • CD

            That makes no sense at all.

      • No Longer Middle Aged Man

        Brown has been a very good governor this time round but he’s about 800 years old and if we want old and quirky then I’d rather have Bernie. I don’t question that Castro is smart and is a comer, but I tend to prefer pols who’ve stayed long enough in one job to have a record of accomplish rather than a sequence of brief bursts to introduce bold new initiatives and then move onto the next higher position. Maybe I’m projecting too much based on my experience watching university administrators, but I’m leery of evaluating candidates for high office based more on what they’ve sown rather than what they’ve reapt.

        Edit: Sherrod Brown. Oh. Never mind!

      • gogiggs

        Nothing wrong with Brown. He’s great!
        He’s also way more useful in his secure-ish Senate seat than he is attending foreign funerals.

    • postmodulator

      Is there a reason Mark Dayton hasn’t come up?

      • efc

        Interesting. I’ve heard great things about his tenure as governor of MN. Econobrowser has had some good charts and graphs showing how much better MN has performed economically than WI under Walker.

      • StinkinBadger

        He has charisma equal to that of most walleyes?

        I jest.

        Kinda.

      • Davis X. Machina

        Personality sink. It doesn’t matter after the election, but you’re choosing campaign Surrogate #1.

      • ochospantalones

        Old and boring, but also kind of weird and erratic. He’s talked openly about his struggles with alcoholism and depression. While it’s good that he talks about these things to destigmatize them, nevertheless they are potentially problematic in a national campaign.

        • Paul Chillman

          Also the fact that his senate career was a bit of a disaster, and that’s a much closer analogue to VP than being a governor. I think he’s perfect where he is.

          I’m surprised we never hear Klobuchar’s name — I personally don’t quite get why she’s hugely popular, but she definitely is.

          • efgoldman

            I’m surprised we never hear Klobuchar’s name

            I doubt HRC would choose another woman. But if she did, wouldn’t retiring senator Barbara Mikulski be wicked pissah?

          • ochospantalones

            Dayton does have a strange career trajectory. From being a joke of a senator to becoming an effective governor. Is there any explanation as to why he was so much worse at the former? Was he still drinking back then?

            I like Klobuchar and would be happy to see her picked, but it seems like the only woman they are looking at is Warren.

            • Paul Chillman

              As I recall, the explanation he gave when he ran for governor (paraphrasing) was that he wasn’t well-suited for the head-down, collaborative style required of a first-term senator, and that he preferred being in an executive job where he could make the decisions. That struck me as unusually brash for a candidate (especially in Minnesota), but points for honesty!

              • ochospantalones

                Interesting, thanks for the explanation.

      • mongolia

        No, but you hear his Senators, Klobuchar and Franken, come up all the time. Both more charismatic and younger, and would allow Dayton to nominate the successor (maybe we get the nations first Muslim Senator that way?). Both of them along with Kaine, Perez, and Warren are what I think the top of the shortlist should be.

        • crownwave

          Could Ellison be a decent VP pick? I know I’d be excited to vote for him.

          • Kalil

            That would be amazing for the ‘trolling trump’ value, for sure.

        • Colin Day

          I’m still holding hold for Franken/Stein ’16

          • Halloween Jack

            Unlikely–Al’s solidly behind HRC–but hilarious.

      • N__B

        Because we have no need of Brian Blessed as an expert in unarmed combat?

        • njorl

          Huh. It also had Charlotte Rampling right before her career took off.

          • N__B

            One of the best episodes of a great show.

    • I don’t know how much he’d (or any VP candidate would) bring to the ticket, but I’d love it if someone would relieve us of Jay Inslee so Washington could get some real tax reform.

      • Lev

        The downside of one-party rule. I remember reading about how Inslee defended the Seattle tunnel/Bertha disaster by saying they’d spent too much on it already to just give it up. Seriously. People were tweeting him the wikipedia link to the sunk cost theorem.

        • djw

          He was pretty good, and seemed reasonably intelligent, as a Congressman. As a Governor he’s quite effective at making Locke and Gregoire look better in retrospect.

      • ColBatGuano

        You think Inslee is the reason we don’t have tax reform in Washington? Not the 26-23 Republican majority in the Senate?

        • I instinctively assumed it was somehow Tim Eyman’s fault. But I instinctively assume everything that’s fucked up about politics in this state is Tim Eyman’s fault.

  • socraticsilence

    Part of what goes into this is if Clinton’s planning on one term or two (this isn’t a hypothetical her second term would end with her in her late 70s).

    • witlesschum

      I can’t imagine she’d run planning on a single term, though her age does make her VP of somewhat more interest than Obama’s.

      • twbb

        Right; I honestly think for once age might be an asset. I would not be surprised if a fair number of establishment Republicans who just can’t stomach Trump vote for her thinking that at least she’ll probably only serve 4 years.

      • Matt McIrvin

        The presidential candidate who vows to be a one-termer is one of those political-junkie fantasies that reporters like to trot out every so often, like the brokered convention, or the Electoral College coup, or the various ways of throwing it to the House of Representatives, or the President who anoints a successor by appointing them VP and then resigning without being under threat of impeachment.

        • tomscud

          It has at least happened once. (Polk, though if he wasn’t in such bad health maybe he would have gone back on the promise.)

          • Matt McIrvin

            The brokered convention and the House of Representatives runoff used to happen too, but not lately.

  • Rob in CT

    How is Perez as a campaigner? Good in a debate? Do we know?

    • Boots Day

      Near as I can tell, the only election Perez has ever won was to serve on the Montgomery County Council. So he would bring virtually zero electoral experience or constituency to the campaign.

    • notahack

      He’s been pretty good as a Hillary surrogate on the campaign trail this year, with a couple of good lines and no gaffes. About as good as you’d expect.

    • Spiny

      I’ve listened to a couple podcast interviews of him and he sounded pretty smooth, spinned tough questions in a positive manner and is eloquent about the work of the Labor Department and its role in working for economic equality.

      These were both friendly interviews though. How he’d do in a debate seems to depend on what kind of VP pick Trump upchucks on us. I doubt Perez has Clinton’s experience dealing with public Republican whackjobbery.

      • Gregor Sansa

        I doubt Perez has Clinton’s experience dealing with public Republican whackjobbery.

        I doubt McGonagall has Potter’s experience in directly facing down Voldemort.

        • Spiny

          True, you’ll never really know with any of the picks until they get in the ring, and Perez has plenty of strengths to work with.

          We all know McGonagall would have been awesome facing down Voldy, though.

    • Scizzy

      Take this for what it’s worth (not much), but my father is a labor lawyer who has met with Perez a bunch of times and he’s been convinced the guy would be a knockout campaigner long before the VP talk really began. In person, at least, he’s a really sharp, commanding, funny person.

      • Spiny

        I was struck by his humor when I listened to his interviews too. Self-deprecating humor is a tough thing for a politician to pull off without making himself look either silly or faux-humble, but he’s great at it.

    • Hogan

      You can see his DOL confirmation hearing here. That’s probably a tougher room than any Trump running mate.

  • Thrax

    A choice that would similarly signal a strong commitment to the issues Sanders voters carry about without costing a Senate seat: Richard Cordray. Yes, sure, his name recognition is nil, but so is Perez’s, and he’s done a lot of great stuff as head of the CFPB. (Downside: you would need to get a new CFPB head confirmed, which could be tricky even if the Democrats retake the Senate.)

    (Of course, the demographic factor doesn’t apply. White guy.)

  • sleepyirv

    This race has driven me so crazy that I’m starting to take this argument for Al Franken seriously.

    • Snarki, child of Loki

      Franken is great, and I particularly like his suggestion that RWNJ’s be given a free “lumber massage”, but wouldn’t he have to tone it down as VP? That would be a real loss.

      • Aaron Morrow

        If Cheney can be Cheney, then I’m totally in favor of replacing Biden with a guy who can pretend to be “Diamond Joe.”

        Did Franken ever own a Trans Am?

    • EliHawk

      One of your bigger strengths this year is Serious vs. Reality TV Joke. Picking someone that 90% of the country still thinks of as “The Senator from Saturday Night Live” undermines that argument too much.

      • sparks

        It’s better than “The Congressman from The Love Boat”.

        • rea

          The “President from Death Valley Days,” complete with a team of 20 mules.

        • efgoldman

          It’s better than “The Congressman from The Love Boat”.

          He never ran for higher office.
          The bar is pretty low for Republiklowns in congress. Louis Gohmert? Steve King? Crazy Eyes?

      • EBT

        You seriously over estimate the draw of SNL.

      • Lost Left Coaster

        Franken has been a politician long enough that I’m not even sure how many people remember him from SNL. Or even know what the hell SNL is.

        • Rob in CT

          They can be reminded (there is, I’m sure, plenty of video).

          In another year, fine. But I think Eli’s right about this particular election.

          • EliHawk

            Yeah. It’s a sign of how good a Senator he is that he went from barely squeaking by Norm Coleman by a few hundred votes in Obama’s election to cruising to reelection in 2014. But he squeaked by because he was considered an unserious, celebrity guy. Take him national now, and you’re back at square one, with all the video, and old humor pieces, and the rest. Also, like Warren, he’s a really really good Senator! Stop trying to make all the talented legislators Vice President.

    • Dennis Orphen

      He’s the perfect pick if Trump picks his perfect running mate: Fred Silverman.

    • njorl

      It would be worth it if we could get Trump to select Tom Davis for his VP, mistaking him for this guy.

  • Mac the Knife

    Tangentially related to the topic – one of the wonderful perks of my upbringing is that I get to overhear conversations among wingnuts whenever I visit my parents.

    Last weekend, a racist quip about Elizabeth Warren got the conversation about the Democrats’ VP choice going. One of said wingnuts is sufficiently in touch with reality to bring up the factor of who would replace a Senator should one be appointed.

    Another responded that “knowing Democrats, they probably wouldn’t let him (Gov. Kasich) appoint someone”. I avoid those conversations like the plague, but I was in a temporary state of shock for about 10 seconds upon hearing this and almost made the mistake of speaking up.

    Just a reminder of how much projection they’re capable of.

    • Just_Dropping_By

      I avoid those conversations like the plague, but I was in a temporary state of shock for about 10 seconds upon hearing this and almost made the mistake of speaking up. Just a reminder of how much projection they’re capable of.

      Yes, discussing the possibility that Democrats could do something to prevent or limit in some manner a Republican governor from appointing a Republican to replace a departing Democratic senator is “projection.” Oh, wait:

      Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid has been actively reviewing Massachusetts rules for filling a US Senate vacancy . . . . The upshot of Reid’s review is that Senate Democrats may have found an avenue to block or at least narrow GOP Governor Charlie Baker’s ability to name a temporary replacement and prevent the Senate from flipping to a Democratic majority if Warren were to leave the chamber.

      https://www.bostonglobe.com/news/politics/2016/06/03/harry-reid-studies-legal-scenarios-for-filling-senate-seat-elizabeth-warren-gets-vice-presidential-nod/3FSrNJlAhqRoiWt6iQMK7J/story.html

      • Mac the Knife

        How any of this could be described as something nefarious, I don’t know.

        From the conversations I overhear, I’m also acutely aware of the persecution complex wingnuts have, so I think I have a good idea of what you see when you read it, so actually I do know.

        Doesn’t mean it is.

    • Gregor Sansa

      You think that changing the rules, for instance so that he had to choose somebody from the same party as the outgoing person, would be beyond the pale? I would have no issues if they did that. The legislature plus the outgoing senator collectively have more legitimacy than he does.

      • What I was particularly struck by in Mac the Knife’s account of the conversation was that apparently the rules have already been changed to allow the replacement for the departing senior Senator from Massachusetts to be named by the Governor of Ohio.

        Tricky, that GOP!

        • Mac the Knife

          Oh, the conversation was about most of the people being discussed here, and this bit was in response to the Sherrod Brown. In trying to be brief, I might have sacrificed some clarity there!

          • Mac the Knife

            I missed the edit window – I think his friends started calling him “the Sherrod Brown” during his time at The Ohio State University.

    • efgoldman

      Just a reminder of how much projection they’re capable of.

      And of how they repel facts, like two magnets placed ++ together.

    • Malaclypse

      Another responded that “knowing Democrats, they probably wouldn’t let him (Gov. Kasich) appoint someone”. I avoid those conversations like the plague, but I was in a temporary state of shock for about 10 seconds upon hearing this and almost made the mistake of speaking up.

      Not entirely projection. In MA, with a long string of Republican governors and an aging Kennedy, the state re-wrote the law to require special elections. Then Kennedy died under the only Democratic governor in over 20 years, and Coakley fucked up.

  • I think Warren would be a bad idea. Not only are we robbing the progressive coalition, but what are the chances of replacing her with someone as dynamic?

    Perez is the much better choice.

    • rea

      The ideal solution would be for Perez to move to Massachussetts

  • Charlie S

    I think Jeff Merkley, the junior Senator from Oregon, would be a good choice. He was the only senator to support Sanders, is strong on banking reform and overall well-versed in public policy. His low key competence would be in marked contrast to any Trump choice. Plus, Oregon will (very likely) have a Democratic governor to replace him.

    • sleepyirv

      It’s strange how little Merkley’s name has come up, even as a dark horse candidate. As a Sanders supporter, it would be a great burying the hatchet moment for the campaign to pick him as the VP.
      Yet for all his positives, no one seems that enthused about his chances. Has he pissed off the Clintons somehow?

      • Charlie S

        If he has pissed them of, there’s nothing public about it, which means he could still be part of the ticket. He’s a really nice balance to Clinton.

      • He’s a pretty dull speaker, from what I’ve seen, and Oregon is a small state. And he doesn’t have much name recognition.

        • Charlie S

          “Dullness” is very subjective (I’ve heard him on the radio and thought he was fine), and “state balance” really doesn’t count for much. If he were her selection he’d be recognized just fine.

          • I think he’d be a perfectly fine choice, but those are probable reasons his name hasn’t been in the mix. The West is virtually invisible to Beltway prognosticators, anyway.

          • lunaticllama

            The size of the state is sort of irrelevant to this decision. Biden is from DE. Cheney was really from WY and only was in Texas for his Halliburton gig. If Merkley has the political chops and is competent, he would be a good choice.

    • Jordan

      Unless it gets sold as part of a deal with Sanders (and even then) I can’t see how picking Merkley wouldn’t piss off almost all of Clinton’s supporters in office.

      • efgoldman

        I can’t see how picking Merkley wouldn’t piss off almost all of Clinton’s supporters in office.

        I know nothing about Merkley, but I doubt that anybody HRC chooses would piss off any of HRC’s office-holding supporters. Pretty much by definition, they’re all pragmatic politicians – they want HRC to win, and if possible deliver majorities in congress.

        • Jordan

          Well, the idea is that all of HRC’s office-holding supporters *endorsed* here, and often quite early.

          I would imagine they would be pissed if she gave the VP slot to the one major democrat who *didn’t* endorse her and instead endorsed her opponent.

          HRC’s supporters are pragmatic, sure, but they are also self-interested. And if Merkley got nominated they’d have to be thinking: why the fuck did I endorse Hillary if the dude who didn’t got the top prize?

          Or at least something like that. I don’t really know how they think.

      • djw

        never mind, misread the comment.

  • I agree that Perez might be a great choice but I’d like to know more about his skill as a campaigner/debater.

    How about a guy who is in the news today, Chris Murphy (CT): young, smart, articulate progressive, Dem Gov would pick replacement and he would lock in the Irish liberal vote.

    • young, smart, articulate progressive, Dem Gov would pick replacement and he would lock in the Irish liberal vote.

      All of the above apply to Patrick Lynch (MA representative) as well.

      But two northeasterners seems suboptimal.

      • Grrrh. That’s Stephen, not Patrick.

        • Lev

          Huh? Stephen Lynch is not young and I believe pro-life.

        • Lynch is apro-lifer. Not going to happen.

      • mds

        Are you sure you aren’t thinking of Seth Moulton? Because Stephen Lynch isn’t young, smart, or even remotely progressive outside of labor issues.

        • I’m not even sure I was thinking at all.

          Grrrh (squared).

        • jlredford

          Moulton is a distinct star, but has no chance at higher office with Warren and Markey there. He’d make a great replacement for Warren.

        • Jackov

          Moulton is also the only member of the MA delegation with a lower PP score on ‘crucial votes’ than Lynch though one year of sub-optimal voting is better than 14.

    • notahack

      Is the “Irish liberal” bit a for serious thing?

      • All my comments must be at least 10% snark. It’s in my LGM subscription contract.

        • jim, some guy in iowa

          you got a contract?

          damn, I might be the equivalent of the kids who shag flies during batting practice

          • N__B

            I used to shag flies but then decided to restrict myself to vertebrates.

            • rea

              You must not be a Republican, if you prefer a woman with a backbone.

    • Rob in CT

      I’m not sure if he helps in the general election, but I’d be ok with it.

  • Denverite

    If she wanted to go the bipartisan route, she could pick Hickenlooper, the best Republican governor Colorado has ever had.

    • Wapiti

      I can see some need to make bipartisan noises. Transportation seems to be a good place. I hope that, for once, the Democratic Party can fill a cabinet without needing a Republican for Defense.

      • Denverite

        (It’s a joke. Hickenlooper is a Democrat, albeit one with some very “centrist” views. He’s pro-fracking, for example. In any event, I’ve been told by someone who would know that he’s almost certainly going to be Secretary of Energy in a Clinton administration.)

      • Captain Oblivious

        Transportation is the last place you should put a Republican. We need more publicly-funded mass transportation, not less, more regulation of airlines and especially railways, not less, more incentives for reducing greenhouse emissions and other pollutants while increasing fuel efficiency, not less, more incentives for increasing highway safety, not less, and certainly not more private toll roads for the rich.

      • Amanda in the South Bay

        Didn’t Obama already have a Republican transportation secretary?

        • Cash & Cable

          Yup, Ray LaHood.

          • Pat

            Who was from Illinois.

          • efgoldman

            Yup, Ray LaHood.

            Pretty much hamstrung and made pointless by the delightful folks in the Republiklown congress, who came this close to letting the highway fund zero out.

            • Halloween Jack

              Ray LaHood is a great example of just how far the Overton Window has shifted. Congressional veteran, well-liked by everyone, solid, sensible ideas–and all his old buddies cared about was that he was working for the Kenyan usurper now. Even his own son (who succeeded the feckless aging twink Aaron Schock) is closer to the Teahadists than the more moderate path his old man took.

      • Brad Nailer

        “Bipartisan noises”? Why? If the Republicans want their people in Cabinet slots, let them elect the president. I haven’t heard much about “bipartisan noises” from their side in a while, unless that’s what it was: pure noise.

        There are Democrats aplenty who are fully qualified to fill any post that President Hillary needs filled. Let’s not slap our own people in the face by picking someone who’s already on Mitch McConnell’s rolodex.

      • JR in WV

        Maybe Bill could be Sec Def. After he was CiC for 8 years!

        • bender

          If JFK could appoint his brother AG, why not?

    • ThrottleJockey

      New Campaign Slogan: “A beer for you and pot for me!”

      • Denverite

        Actually, a bit of both. Hickenlooper ran a restaurant/brewery before going into politics. Although I have never gone back to his big restaurant after I saw an enormous rat run across the floor one time.

        • mds

          Hey, allowing Tom Tancredo to run around in his restaurant just further burnishes his bipartisan cred.

        • witlesschum

          It sounds like a well-fed rat. You wouldn’t want to eat somewhere the rats looked skinny, would you?

      • “Pot in every chicken”

        • efgoldman

          “Pot in every chicken”

          + 2 grams

  • Captain Oblivious

    Perez or Castro or another latino. If nothing else, it will make racist heads explode on the right and give T-Rump more opportunities to say something stupid.

    Any sitting Dem senator? Nooooooooooooooooooooooo! Please don’t, HRC.

    Sanders? No. Don’t reward the guy who didn’t join the party until the age of 72 and who has done zilch to help down-ticket candidates.

    • Linnaeus

      I seriously doubt Sanders would want the VP job anyway.

      • efgoldman

        I seriously doubt Sanders would want the VP job anyway.

        Too old. No-one older than I am should be prez or VP (I’ll be 71 this month.) Not sure he could stand the stress if, FSM forbid, something should happen to prez HRC.

    • witlesschum

      Sanders is better in the senate where he can use his new-found status and influence to push the party and, hopefully, the Clinton Administration from the left. The argument for him as VP is party unity and I’m not at all convinced that’s a problem post-convention.

      People who complain that he didn’t join the Democratic Party seem like the ultimate in style over substance. Sanders was a Democrat in everything but name in the Senate, so why should I care that he wanted to pretend publicly he wasn’t?

      I don’t think you want two very old people on the ticket, either. The only way Sanders makes sense is if you’re very worried about unity and/or if Clinton for some reason doesn’t want to annoint a successor, as Sanders won’t be a candidate to succeed her in eight years.

      • JL

        Also, Sanders is currently the ranking member on the Senate Budget Committee (and at least one of the health care subcommittees, IIRC). If the Dems retake the Senate, he can run the Senate Budget Committee. Why make him the VP pick over that? Why would he want to be the VP pick over that?

        People who complain that he didn’t join the Democratic Party seem like the ultimate in style over substance.

        Well, the argument is the ultimate in style over substance, not the people, but yes. I don’t get why people care so much.

      • brendalu

        Sanders as VP is a recipe for watching “Party Unity” fall apart right from the top. I can’t really see the current dynamic between HRC and BS playing out well over the stress of a campaign.

  • Incontinentia Buttocks

    I’m just delighted that Corey Booker is apparently no longer in the conversation.

    • Or Jim Webb.

      • labarthe

        Webb is actually my guess for Trump’s VP pick.

    • Davis X. Machina

      Harold C. Ford. Why accept a substitute when the original is available?

      • Cash & Cable

        What’s really sad about this comment is that as bad as Ford was, the country would have been better off if he’d won his Senate race against Trump boot-licker Bob Corker back in 2006.

      • efgoldman

        Harold C. Ford. Why accept a substitute when the original is available?

        Elliott Cutler, to keep him from running for anything else.

    • jeer9

      It’s a long way off, but rest assured Booker will be running for President in 2024.

    • brendalu

      After last night he may have moved up a few rungs. But between the Wall St theme and the teachers unions, it would be a very bad move.

  • Murc

    Michelle Obama.

    Listen, if they’re staying in DC for a few more years anyway…

    • Matt McIrvin

      One of Orson Scott Card’s fever dreams a while back was of Barack Obama eliminating Hillary Clinton in some way (he thought that was what the email thing was) and replacing her with Michelle as his successor, prior to abolishing elections entirely and becoming co-dictator for life.

      I don’t think Michelle has any inclination whatsoever for electoral politics.

      • mds

        I don’t think Michelle has any inclination whatsoever for electoral politics.

        If Barack abolishes elections, I fail to see the problem.

        • Lost Left Coaster

          Sssshhh! Don’t tell them about the plan!

      • skate

        You’re making me happier that I swore off reading Card a long time ago.

      • Halloween Jack

        See, that’s one thing that Card’s remaining “but it’s not hardcore homophobia, it’s just a Mormon thing” apologists don’t get: he’s way, way beyond that now.

  • ochospantalones

    Castro is not qualified to be president at this time. I think picking him for VP would be irresponsible. I like Thomas Perez, but I am skeptical he is actually a good choice either to serve as president in a time of crisis or weather a national campaign. VP selections typically don’t matter much politically, but that assumes a baseline of electoral competence. Perez has never run any sort of serious campaign or been forced to respond quickly on an endless series of national topics.

    I want someone who has run (and won) multiple state-wide campaigns and won’t cost us a senate seat. Which of the names currently being thrown about pretty much only applies to Tim Kaine.

    • Denverite

      I was joking before, but if we’re considering white, male, swing state governors, Hickenlooper wouldn’t be the worst choice.

      • Just_Dropping_By

        Except that Clinton is most likely going to win Colorado anyway, and I don’t see that Hickenlooper would have much draw outside of the state. (I also kind of doubt Hickenlooper wants to go into national politics. I’ve always had the impression that he would go back to the private sector after he’s term limited out of the governor’s office.)

        • Denverite

          See above. I’ve been told by a reliable source that he’s likely to be Clinton’s Energy secretary.

        • efgoldman

          Except that Clinton is most likely going to win Colorado anyway

          VP really doesn’t matter for that anyway, any more. Someone from a blue state (say, just for argument, Gillibrand, Murphy, or Klobuchar) just reinforces what’s going to happen anyway. Someone from a red state, a traitor state, isn’t going to flip it.

          • djw

            Yes. The only previous instances where there’s a good evidence-based case to be made that a VP candidate boosted the ticket’s electoral share in the VP’s home state involves small states with someone who has been very prominent for a long time in that state, and even then the boost is very small:

            http://www.manchesteruniversitypress.co.uk/9781784993382/

            • ochospantalones

              Yeah, the only person who really fits the bill this time around is Jeanne Shaheen. And there are a bunch of reasons why that is an unlikely pick.

      • Captain Oblivious

        There are no good Republicans. Anyone still putting R after their name is part of the problem, not the solution.

        • Denverite

          See above. The “Hickenlooper is a great Republican” meme is a joke told by Colorado Democrats, most of whom are to his left. He’s a centrist, pro-business Democrat.

          • Captain Oblivious

            Oops. :D

      • ochospantalones

        My priorities for VP seem to be different than everyone else’s so I would be fine with plenty of people that many would regard as a joke. Hickenlooper would be fine by me. As would Kaine. Or Dan Malloy. Or Deval Patrick. I think trying to do ideological or demographic targeting with the VP pick is a bad idea. While geographical targeting can work, it is generally not worth the trouble and would be a secondary concern for me.

        Choose someone who is mainstream in the party, well-vetted, and has shown the ability to hold up in a serious campaign environment. Most of all, choose someone who you could live with as president. And won’t cost us a senate seat. If someone meets all of those and is also a minority or also from a swing state that’s a bonus.

        • No Longer Middle Aged Man

          Not Malloy! He’s anti-labor and would personally piss off Bernie. I’m fine with Hickenlooper or the other names mentioned above.

          • That might put CT in play for Trump. Malloy: a more corporate friendly Hillary and with a more abrasive personality. Hey, WTF why not Rahm?

            • rea

              Rahm might be an excellent choice–after all, he’d no longer be Mayor of Chicago, and how can a VP do any harm?

              • Brad Nailer

                That would be like rewarding him for being a prick.

                • so-in-so

                  In other words – politics as usual.

              • efgoldman

                how can a VP do any harm?

                S/he probably can’t. Ask Darth Cheney.
                Oops.

          • would personally piss off Bernie.

            It would also piss off Nader so he’s got that going for him.

        • Rob in CT

          Malloy is a bad public speaker, IMO. I think he’s been a solid governor, but as a campaigner… meh.

        • Aaron Morrow

          Most of all, choose someone who you could live with as president.

          While he’s no Jim Webb, I want Tim Kaine to stay in the Senate at least until he’s no longer the more liberal Senator from Virginia. I don’t want someone to the right of Max Baucus as President.

          Is there somewhere to appoint Mark Warner where he can’t do any damage?

          • Is there somewhere to appoint Mark Warner where he can’t do any damage?

            Commissioner of Extreme Sports.

    • Amanda in the South Bay

      Merkley is much more progressive than Kaine (gives off boring technocrat white guy vibes) and has a Dem governor to replace him.

      • ThrottleJockey

        Virginia also has a sitting Democratic governor.

        • Amanda in the South Bay

          And Merkley isn’t nearly as centrist as Kaine. I don’t see anyone excited about Kaine.

          • tomscud

            Jamelle Bouie at slate has been pushing him.

          • ochospantalones

            I don’t think VP selections need to be or should be particularly exciting. How exciting were Bush the Elder, Gore, Cheney, or Biden?

            • so-in-so

              Cheney might not have been exciting when he was picked, sure got “interesting” later.

              • ColBatGuano

                This is the “may you live in interesting times” version of interesting right?

      • ochospantalones

        Merkley would be fine by me, but he hasn’t really been one of the regular names in the rumor mill. And Virginia has a Democratic governor.

        • Amanda in the South Bay

          Oregon also has a Dem governor.

          • ochospantalones

            I know, but as Virginia also has one that is not a reason to favor Merkley. Merkley is a good senator, and if he ends up as VP nominee that is fine by me. I would certainly take him over Julian Castro.

            As far as blue state senators go, I like Amy Klobuchar. But it sounds like they are not really considering women other than Warren.

      • Lev

        I doubt it would be Kaine anyway. Nor Chris Murphy. Both are too dovish for Hillary.

        • ochospantalones

          I think it is highly unlikely that foreign policy views will play a major role in the VP selection process. The top of the ticket is a former Secretary of State, adding foreign policy bona fides will not be a priority. As long as the person is mainstream in the party on foreign policy it won’t be an issue.

          • mds

            I think it is highly unlikely that foreign policy views will play a major role in the VP selection process.

            And yet how incredibly experienced they are at winning statewide campaigns is supposed to? I mean, your standard suggests that Barack Obama would have been a poor VP candidate on the campaign trail, because he won exactly one statewide race, partially thanks to a lucky break with Jack Ryan. It’s the person at the top of the ticket who wins or loses it by campaigning, because no one is ever going to say, “I wasn’t going to vote for Hillary, but her really electorally-experienced VP pick managed to convince me otherwise with vis mad campaign skillz.”

            I also suspect any analysis that endorses picking the first Democratic governor of Connecticut since 1990, who has won twice by miniscule margins because (1) he keeps pissing off the Democratic base, but not quite enough; and (2) he has an abrasive, utterly uncharismatic personality. The reasons he’s nevertheless won in Connecticut are not even remotely nationalizable.

            • ochospantalones

              The point of having survived a state-wide campaign is primarily about vetting, and experience publicly responding on a wide range of issues quickly. People don’t vote for the VP, so the first principle is Do No Harm. For one thing, the level of scrutiny given to mayors, Members of the House, or mid-level cabinet officials is just much lower than it is in a contested race for senator or governor. People who seem fine on the surface can turn out to have unexpected scandals lurking in their past. Also, being on TV every day talking about all national issues is harder than it looks, and it is difficult to people who have never had to address these things in a campaign to get up to speed quickly.

              With the foreign policy stuff rather than looking at hawk vs. dove you’re really just looking for someone who is conversant on the issues (which Kaine and Murphy seem to be) and won’t be an embarrassment. With some of the governors this could be an issue.

              I would say that Barack Obama is a once-in-a-generation political talent who breaks most rules. I voted for him in the 2008 primary, though generally I would prefer someone with a longer electoral track record. I don’t see anyone available, either experienced or inexperienced, who rivals Obama.

              • Pat

                It seems like running for office is a 100-hour work week that one must maintain for months on end. It might be difficult for someone who hasn’t done it before to be able to tough it out without making at least one gigantic blunder.

                • ochospantalones

                  Yeah, it’s actually a really hard job. It is pretty much inevitable that inexperienced people will screw it up at some up. Check out what James Fallows wrote the day that Sarah Palin was nominated (before anyone knew what a moron she is):

                  Unless you have seen it first first-hand, as part of the press scrum or as a campaign staffer, it is almost impossible to imagine how grueling the process of running for national office is. Everybody gets exhausted. The candidates have to answer questions and offer views roughly 18 hours a day, and any misstatement on any topic can get them in trouble.

                  . . .

                  The smartest person in the world could not prepare quickly enough to know the pitfalls, and to sound confident while doing so, on all the issues she will be forced to address. This is long before she gets to a debate with Biden; it’s what the press is going to start out looking for.

                  So the prediction is: unavoidable gaffes. The challenge for the McCain-Palin campaign is to find some way to defuse them ahead of time, since Socrates, Machiavelli, and Clausewitz reincarnated would themselves make errors in her situation. And the challenge for Democrats is to lead people to think, What if she were in charge?, without being bullies about it.

                  http://www.theatlantic.com/technology/archive/2008/08/my-prediction-about-sarah-palin/8762/

            • Rob in CT

              To be fair to Malloy, this:

              first Democratic governor of Connecticut since 1990

              conflicts with this:

              who has won twice by miniscule margins because (1) he keeps pissing off the Democratic base, but not quite enough

              The first suggests CT kind of likes to elect GOP governors (we do). The second suggests Malloy should’ve won in a blowout and didn’t because he sucks.

              Note that he won in 2010 and 2014. Not good years for Democrats.

              He’s not charismatic, I agree, and think he’s a poor choice for that reason.

              • mds

                Well, I was going more for (1) CT has been trending bluer, but (2) even an out-of-touch** moneybags like Tom Foley was able to keep it really close because Malloy doesn’t have the political skills God gave a mollusc. With his repeatedly kicking public schoolteachers in their faces, I’m not sure if Malloy would have made it in 2014 without being able to call on Barack and Michelle Obama, who are not a liability with the CT Democratic base.

                **Between the whole “It’s the workers’ fault that their manufacturing jobs went elsewhere” and the “No more gun control after Newtown” bits, I’d have thought the state that now has Chris Murphy holding Joe Lieberman’s old Senate seat would have sent Tom packing handily in 2014, fondness for Republican governors or no.

                • Rob in CT

                  I guess I don’t think Malloy has been so bad (substantively. I agree that he’s not charismatic), but beyond that:

                  I think that there are lots of people who are uneasy about one-party rule in CT and, further, non-presidential election years suck for Dems. 2010 and 2014 were awful for Democrats.

                  The counterpoint about the opposition: Tom Foley and Tom Foley, Part Deux, is a fair one.

            • ochospantalones

              Adding on Obama- Despite his obvious virtues as a campaigner he is actually a good pretty illustration of the perils of picking as VP nominee someone who has never been subjected to the rigors of a real contested campaign. Think about the Reverend Wright controversy. That had never been seriously addressed before 2008 because Obama had never been subject to that level of scrutiny. Now imagine Obama doesn’t run for president in 2008, and is chosen as the VP nominee in late August. No one knows anything about Reverend Wright at that point, and it explodes as a political issue in September or possibly even during the convention.

              Would the Clinton campaign be able to overcome it as the Obama presidential campaign did? Can VP nominee Obama go out and give something like the Philadelphia speech and have it work the way it did? Maybe, maybe not, but it’s not the sort of thing anyone wants to have to contend with in the homestretch of a general election.

    • Nutella

      Tim Kaine is anti-choice. He should not be rewarded for that by the first presidential candidate who fully supports reproductive justice. That kind of person needs to be isolated in a position that can never affect reproductive justice. A big tent is all very well but not when the issue is civil rights.

  • Crusty

    I don’t like or dislike him, but is there any traction for Martin O’Malley? Is there bad blood because he tried to steal 1% of the vote during the primaries? Has he put too much negative stuff about Hillary on tape? Does his failure in the primary indicate that he’d be a drag on the ticket?

    • Lev

      You have to ask yourself what he adds to the equation. So far as I can tell, the answer is nothing. A guy mainly known for outsized ambition who left Maryland so unpopular a Republican won the governorship? Also, as @dick_nixon would say, Hillary would need to get a food taster.

    • cleek

      Biden dropped out really early in 2008. so i don’t think that’s much of an impediment.

    • JonH

      Bernie fans would just *loove* that the distant 3rd-place guy got the VP pick instead of the 2nd place guy who actually won states.

      • CD

        Oh please. Obama didn’t choose Clinton eight years ago. How many examples can you come up with over the last 40 years of the nominee choosing the next runner-up as VP?

  • Cash & Cable

    Man, people are really hung up on the perceived need for experience with state-wide campaigns. Perez has major Washington experience with two of the hot button issues of our time – labor rights and civil rights. He’s also a former federal prosecutor, so he knows a thing or two about criminal justice. Almost nobody with his level of federal government experience has the same kind of progressive credentials. Yeah, he’s not a seasoned campaigner. But he’s done his job and avoided major gaffes in the partisan snakepit of DC, and that counts for a lot. Sure, he hasn’t done much with retail politics, but he’s a smart guy and I’m sure he’ll work well with the Clinton campaign team.

    We’ve got a short bench and even fewer young faces on that bench. That means we gotta be willing to accelerate the timetable for promising political leaders who we might otherwise want to leave on the shelf for a few years. Castro’s track record at HUD has me concerned about his ceiling. I have no such concerns about Perez, so I think he’s well worth the risk of putting him on the ticket.

    All that said, I wouldn’t be mad about a Deval Patrick, Amy Klobuchar or Jeff Merkley pick. I want Warren to stay in the Senate until the end of time.

    • twbb

      The problem isn’t one of strategy, it’s one of appearance. VP is presumptively the party’s next presidential candidate. Plus you have a Presidential candidate uncomfortably high unfavorables in her own party. I think we need someone with actual electoral experience at a national level. Perez isn’t that guy; he certainly COULD be, which is why I think he’d make a great candidate to take Mikulski’s seat in Maryland if he could get the state party to put him forward. Then maybe President down the road.

      • ochospantalones

        The Maryland senate primary is over, so that ship has sailed. AFAIK Ben Cardin is not expected to retire when his current term is up after 2018, but I suppose it’s not impossible.

  • pianomover

    Brown? Jerry Brown? I’d be down with that

    • Lev

      Never. In a million years. Would that happen.

      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=K5kUITklALQ

      • pianomover

        Yep, I’m picking my VP choice here but like the Bush’s we know the clintons will carry a grudge to the grave.

      • Charlie S

        Jerry has mellowed with age. But that’s his problem: age. He’s 78 years old, nearly 79 by inauguration day.

    • bender

      If you are looking at elderly California politicians, what about Willie Brown? I’ve seen him doing political commentary on TV and he has a wicked wit. Also he sometimes tells the truth, but deliberately rather than blurting out Biden style. He might not survive the vetting process, however.

      Jerry Brown might be a good pick for head of some agency in the Executive Branch after he finishes his term as governor, if he’s still in good health. For VP, too old, doesn’t want to be a second banana, and things in his personal history that wouldn’t play well outside the Left Coast.

      • Hogan

        Willie is 82, and my sense of him is that the skeletons in his closet have skeletons in their closets.

      • Pseudonym

        Oh God, please don’t let Willie Brown anywhere near a position of any political power. (Or the vice presidency, for that matter.)

    • Gavin Newsom!

      (I’m kidding)

  • xq

    I doubt Perez would have any effect on attracting Sanders voters simply because they do not know who he is. Warren is the only one I can think of who would be helpful there, but it’s not worth risking her senate seat.

    • efc

      People don’t know who he is. Not just Sanders voters. I think the Clinton campaign could tell a story about Perez and his accomplishments at the DOL if Clinton wanted Perez in part to attract Sanders voters. The story would have to be about some example of a situation where Obama and his advisers wanted to do one thing but Perez was able to convince Obama to take a stronger, more progressive line. I don’t know if that ever happened, but it would help to convince Sanders voters there will be people in Clinton’s administration that can and will “keep her honest” in regards to the policies and stances she has advocated during the campaign so far.

  • Todd

    About all you can do with the VP pick that has any lasting impact is screw it up (Palin and Edwards being recent examples).

    All of the names in the article, and others, would be perfectly fine. A one week national story that pleases most of the likely voters while irking a minority of Dems. that will eventually come around anyway.

    I suppose Castro has more long term strategery upside.

    • I don’t see how picking Edwards counts as screwing it up except in hypothetical retrospect, and that hypothetical requires Kerry to have won in 2004.

      • Warren Terra

        Yeah, Edwards was a perfectly competent, thematically appropriate candidate. He was transparently a fraud, but he was running against Bush/Cheney, so that’s find of a wash.

    • Halloween Jack

      About all you can do with the VP pick that has any lasting impact is screw it up (Palin and Edwards being recent examples).

      And that’s really, really tough to do; Edwards didn’t really melt down until after ’04, and even Dan Quayle had the net effect of making GHWB look smarter and smoother by comparison. (Conversely, Lloyd Bentsen, maybe the idea veep pick, didn’t help Dukakis’ campaign enough; mostly, you heard grumbling that maybe the wrong man was at the top of the ticket.) Palin was a big exception, probably because she’d made a career of buttering up powerful men in politics and then kicking them to the curb when she’d exhausted their usefulness to her. Even then, she was arguably not as bad for McCain as Tom Eagleton was for George McGovern.

  • ochospantalones

    My out-of-left-field suggestion is Gary Locke. He’s experienced, and old but not too old.

    Does he have skeletons in his closet I don’t know about?

    • CD

      I thought of him too. He’d do no harm, has a disarming persona, and he’s a plausible politician from the Western part of the country. His experience as an ambassador would give him some foreign policy chops. I don’t know of any skeletons, though WA state is really not the big leagues politically.

    • Warren Terra

      I like Gary, I volunteered for his first governor campaign (after Mayor Rice lost the primary), but he’s no-one’s idea of a firebrand, attack dog, or even charismatic speaker.

      Still, it would make Trump’s head explode …

      • ochospantalones

        That all sounds fine to me. Hillary is already going to have Obama, Bill, and Biden out there. And Trump is apparently incapable of ignoring Elizabeth Warren, so she doesn’t need to be on the ticket to work as an attacker. A reliable but boring VP nominee should be fine, and his being Asian-American is a bonus for winding up Trump. He’s a Chinese!! He’s a Chinese!!

  • JonH

    Whenever Warren leaves, who will take Warren’s place in the Senate, in terms of her areas of focus and her knowledge? She’s useful there.

    Warren needs to stay in the Senate mentoring like-minded Democrats in either house of Congress who don’t have the same background but are willing to learn.

    • Pseudonym

      The President of the Senate could take Sen. Warren’s place as moral leader if she became Veep, right?

  • twbb

    I would pick Joe Biden (seriously), though I gather Hillary would never do so. Aren’t there any other Democratic Senators in safe seats? Jack Reed? Kirsten Gillibrand? Richard Blumenthal?

    As for the listed choices:

    Brown would be a far, far better choice than Castro; the major downside is it could easily throw the Senate to the GOP which is admittedly terrible (and what political scientists ignore that fact?!). If Trump ever has a surge in popularity (or Hillary has a plummet), then Brown might be a safe choice.

    Julian Castro would be a disastrous pick. I’m sure he’s a capable, intelligent guy, but he has minimal national political experience, and as unfair as such a critique is, looks like he’s 15 years old.

    Perez would be better, but he’s a career technocrat, which is not necessarily the best look given current public sentiment.

    Warren would make a good pick I think. Even if the Dems ran Coakley, she might actually win this time.

    • JonH

      “I would pick Joe Biden (seriously), though I gather Hillary would never do so. Aren’t there any other Democratic Senators in safe seats? Jack Reed? Kirsten Gillibrand? Richard Blumenthal?”

      Chris Murphy (CT)? He just brought himself to some prominence with his anti-gun filibuster.

      Blumenthal is tainted by his history of exaggerating his military experience.

      • twbb

        “Chris Murphy (CT)? He just brought himself to some prominence with his anti-gun filibuster.”

        Not a bad choice, but he’s pretty green though.

        “Blumenthal is tainted by his history of exaggerating his military experience.”

        The impression that I got is that the criticism was overblown, but I could be wrong.

        • “Blumenthal is tainted by his history of exaggerating his military experience.”

          The impression that I got is that the criticism was overblown, but I could be wrong.

          Overblown or entirely unjustified, it wouldn’t matter: we’d have Swiftboating all over again.

          Don’t the Democrats deserve some NEW ratfucking for a change?

          • twbb

            Well, at this point I hope the Dems have learned to actually, you know, RESPOND to those kinds of attacks.

        • Rob in CT

          I have no idea if this has value, but Murphy has repeatedly spoken out in disgust at the mechanics of campaign fundraising. HRC has the right position on the issue, but has trouble convincing some people of her sincerity. Maybe Murphy would help there?

    • efgoldman

      Even if the Dems ran Coakley, she might actually win this time.

      Nononononononononogodnononono

      • Maybe this time she will get Bucky Dent to campaign with her.

        • Colin Day

          Is Aaron Boone available?

  • JonH

    How about Chris Coons (D-DE)?

    The Republicans and Trumpists couldn’t keep themselves from making racist jokes.

    (Coons is white, but that wouldn’t matter)

    • Snarki, child of Loki

      Hey, perhaps a non-politician.

      Jack Black.

      • Trump loves the Blacks.

      • Warren Terra

        George Clooney? Especially if he lets his wife run the show?

    • Pseudonym

      The Republicans and Trumpists couldn’t keep themselves from making racist jokes.

      Though this also would apply to Brown or Warren.

  • Zoogz

    Could go with a guy who already has name recognition, won office as a Democrat in the South, brings back images of a good economy, and has run for national office and even garnered the most votes….

    yes, why not Clinton – Gore 2016?

    (Kidding… perhaps)

    • twbb

      As much as I like Gore, his recent personal issues (which it is entirely possibly are fabricated) may cast a pall on his candidacy as VP, particularly given the Trump attacks on Hillary’s supposed enabling of Bill.

      • Amanda in the South Bay

        Gore has recent personal issues? I haven’t seen him in the news since he was invited to Steve Jobs funeral.

        • twbb

          Well, not recent anymore I guess, I mean the massage therapist thing. Which I think was probably a false allegation, but it was out there in the press and Trump would use it with gusto.

          • efgoldman

            Trump would use it with gusto.

            If that’s a criterion for any choice, than it’s got to be Zombie Mother Teresa and nobody else.

            • Zombie Mother Theresa has never won statewide office and has never been properly vetted.

              • Rob in CT

                Wasn’t Mother Teresa kind of awful?

                • Colin Day

                  She has been accused of proselytizing to patients and refusing them pain medication. Is this what you mean by awful?

                • Warren Terra

                  Also she took a lot of money from some seriously evil mass-murderers who were also devout Catholics or wished to appear so, and unsurprisingly was nice to the donors as she did so. That the people they’d murdered were plausibly enemies of the Church (many of them Communists, or accused as such) made it worse.

              • Thom

                Plus, only marriage was to a dead guy.

                • Warren Terra

                  Technically, to a zombie. Which is now appropriate, since Zombie Mother Theresa was specified.

                  But she’s Albanian or something, right?

  • socraticsilence

    Hell, if we’re throwing out names and don’t think it really matters electorally in terms of geography- Tulsi Gabbard would be an interesting choice:

    Pros: Young, Charismatic, would be first non-Christian since Jefferson (she’s Hindu) , Vet, gets Bernie types and assuages those worried about Clinton primarily due to her hawkishness, Planned Parenthood fundraiser, good speaker, would be almost irresistible target for Trump to say something moronically offensive, is almost perfect embodiment of the Obama emerging majority

    Cons: Very Young, like barely eligible young (currently 35), Hawaii’s not a swing state.

    • ochospantalones

      Please God No.

    • Joanna

      Oh God I never come out of lurking, but I had to just to comment on this. How the bees does someone who’s accused Obama of being too soft on terrorism and all that “radical Islamic terrorism” nonsense appease the DOVES of prospective Hillary voters? Gabbard is batshit crazy and deserves nothing.

      • ochospantalones

        There are a lot of problems with Gabbard. These have largely been swept under the rug because a.) the party “establishment” sees her a rising star and doesn’t want to harm her, and b.) the Bernie people will forgive anything if you support Bernie.

        Though I suppose choosing a pro-Putin, pro-Assad VP nominee could be a bridge to a certain kind of Trump voter.

        • Morat

          I don’t know that she was forgiven so much as nobody bothered to look up her record.

    • Halloween Jack

      Aside from the non-negligible deficits already mentioned, she’s already burned all the bridges with the DNC and Debbie Wasserman Schultz. It’s not even a matter of whether she would get booed at the convention, more of how much longer than a solid minute it would last.

  • Brett

    Perez should get it if he wants it – he hits just about every requirement you could want for a VP candidate, and would definitely be someone that you’d want advising Clinton on matters domestic and foreign.

  • DavidtheK

    Let’s shift the center of gravity with VP pick. A progressive belief is to see government as a force for doing good on behalf of the commons. How about someone from the non-profit community as VP. Some names to think about:

    Aaron Meir – Elected President of the Sierra Club or Michael Brune – Full-time Executive Director of the Club
    Rashad Robinson the Executive Director or Arisha Michelle Hatch Managing Director of Campaigns at Color Of Change
    Rhea Suh – President of the National Resources Defense Council

    And while we’re at it, when it is time to pick the cabinet – I hope Mrs. Clinton will look among the same people. It is time for the non-profit world to have a seat at the table.

    A sitting politician while a typical choice also means a special election to fill that seat must be held. I think this plays into the meme that the only thing office holders are interested in is running for re-election. Dems and progressives need to start building government up – not inadvertently helping to keep it down.

    • bender

      I agree with considering such people for cabinet posts. The number of cabinet level positions has grown since WWII. Expanding the pool of candidates for those positions might improve the overall quality of the appointees. The qualifications for leading a large nonprofit organization are comparable to running a business.

    • Warren Terra

      I’m sorry, this is nuts. For cabinet, but for veep?

  • Pseudonym

    And in contrast to Ohio, as Kuttner explains, the Massachusetts governor’s selection of a replacement senator would be permanent, not temporary. Massachusetts law also allows the clock on the roughly 150-day window to hold a replacement election to start when the incumbent declares his or her intent to resign.

    Huh? Can someone explain this to me?

    • Basically, if Elizabeth Warren announces her intent to resign on January 20 the day after the election, the new election is 150 days from that November day, not January 20.

      • Pseudonym

        I don’t understand why a senator who serves 150 days until the special election is permanent rather than temporary. Is that a typo or am I missing something?

        • Because Elizabeth Warren would be the one serving a lot of those 150 days if she didn’t officially resign until January 20.

          • Pseudonym

            I get that part, it’s the “permanent, not temporary” part I don’t understand. Is that backwards? I don’t see how an appointed replacement would be permanent when there’s a subsequent special election.

  • DilbertSucks

    Julian Castro is — by far — the worst possible pick on the WSJ shortlist, and the fact that 40 presidential scholars gave him the highest overall preference is just mind-boggling. These people must be seriously out of touch and beholden to identity politics tokenism. Even if you think Clinton needs a Hispanic VP (she doesn’t), Perez and Becerra are clearly superior choices, even if they’re not as handsome. Castro is so bad that I would vote third party out of protest in November.

    • I am once again convinced that there is no less rigorous subsection of scholarship than “presidential scholars” who seem to repeat conventional wisdom at amazingly high rates.

    • Warren Terra

      I don’t see the argument for Castro, at all, other than to make work for the sort of halfwit who writes jokes for Jay Leno (because of Castro’s name), but your last sentence is just silly.

  • andrewlong

    Hi Scott, you’ve got the words permanent and temporary transposed here:

    “And in contrast to Ohio, as Kuttner explains, the Massachusetts governor’s selection of a replacement senator would be permanent, not temporary.”

  • DilbertSucks

    By the way, you heard it here first, but one possible game-changer VP for Trump is retired lieutenant general Michael Flynn. Flynn is the only guy, with the possible exception of Kasich, who I actually think might improve Trump’s chances of winning, albeit slightly.

  • labarthe

    Surprised that no one has mentioned Kamala Harris. Hits not only a fair amount of electoral and demographic tick marks — younger, experienced, female, multiracial (African-American and Asian heritage), Western state — but would also enable HRC and the DSC/DNC to elbow her out of the way in favor of their preferred candidate Lorena Sanchez for Boxer’s Senate seat.

    • Warren Terra

      enable HRC and the DSC/DNC to elbow her out of the way in favor of their preferred candidate Lorena Sanchez for Boxer’s Senate seat

      Do you have any evidence for this? Harris had the state party’s endorsement in a contested primary, as I recall my voter’s guide, and got over twice the votes of Sanchez, coming fairly close to a majority given the number of contestants.

      • Pseudonym

        I’m sure labarthe has plenty of evidence that HRC/DSC[?]/DNC all strongly prefer the star of My Daughter’s Fucking Blackzilla! 11 as the next senator from California.

      • Yeah, that comment is a whole lot of bullshit.

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