Geraldine Ferraro 1935-2011
Obit here in the NYT. Not much to add to this. I was too young to vote in that disaster (my first was the 1986 mid-terms), but I still remember it reasonably well. With the advantage of time, she was probably under-qualified for the VP nomination, but in 1984 tacit qualifications for the post weren’t as defined as they are today (e.g. it’s difficult to imagine George H.W. Bush being nominated for VP today, let alone Sargent Shriver). Her career would have benefited from remaining in the House, where she was something of a rising star.
And the Democrats learned a valuable lesson on vetting candidates for the VP nomination. While Mondale is almost certainly wrong in his suggestion that the financial disclosure of both Ferraro and her husband, John Zaccaro, cost the campaign 15 points in the polls, it certainly didn’t help the cause.