Welcome back to Veepstakes! In this installment I'll be going over the 5 "Darkhorse" candidates for Obama's Veep spot. The rules remain the same as my previous installments, I'll give you the name, the Pro's and Con's from an electoral standpoint, My Take on them as a candidate and the Odds they'll take the nom (As darkhorses, expect the odds here to be high, with one notable exception). Here's a quick recap of Obma's Big Five (the odds have changed a little since then)
Gov. Tim Kaine (D-VA)- 4 to 1 (Good Choice)
Sen. Hillary Clinton (D-NY)- 4 to 1 (Bad Choice)
Gen. Wesley Clark (D-AK)- 5 to 1 (Good Choice)
Sen. Jim Webb (D- VA)- 10 to 1 (Bad Choice)
Gov. Kathleen Sibelius (D-KA)- 12 to 1 (Mixed Bag)
Joe Biden- Senior Senator from Delaware, unsuccessful 2008 candidate who got in line behind Obama a few weeks after dropping out.
Pros- He's been in the senate for a long long time, giving Obama the needed experience on the ticket. He's considered to be one of the Dems' top Foreign Policy guys, and his name is apparently one of three being bandied about for Obama's Secretary of State should he win (Kerry and Dodd being the other two). He's good at debates and can turn a phrase with the best of them. His "Federalization" War plan for Iraq (AKA the three state solution) is one of the few Iraq war plans from the left that make even remote amounts of sense.
Cons- The Anti-War Left love him. He's scandal prone and has a serious case of foot-in mouth disorder. He was knocked out of contention from running for president in '88 for plagiarizing speeches from the British Labour party leader Neil Kinnock. He is a wholly owned subsidiary of the Credit Card companies that are all headquartered out of his home state. He has been accused of racism and racist statements in the past (though Obama came to his defense). His long senate history can be used against him, just as McCains will be used against him.
My Take- Joe Biden is one of my least favorite people in goverment (#2 in fact, behind the man who I'll be profiling next). I my mind he exemplifies everything about slimy corrupt politicians that manage to get away with everything with a smile and a handshake. But, most of America will not see this snake in the grass for what he is, so I'll try and be objective. Biden is a moderately good choice for Obama. He helps with Foreign Policy matters and with his Scranton PA roots may be able to help in blue-collar regions. The Credit Card connection is trouble for Obama, but if Biden gets a walk from the media by association with Barry, then they don't have much to worry about there.
ODDS- 12 to 1
Chuck Hagel- Anti-Iraq War Republican Senator and Vietnam vet from the state of Nebraska. My personal Arch-Nemesis.
Pros- Putting him on the ticket makes Obama definitively post-partisan since, other then on Foreign policy matters, they disagree on everything. Adds real heft to Obama's FP credentials. Gets a good deal of Ron Paul supporters to give Obama a second look. Gets under McCain's skin because before the Iraq war Hagel and McCain were very good friends, causing him to lose his cool.
Cons- Disagrees fundamentally with Obama on everything (once again with the exception of military matters). will make it hard for Obama to stay on message on just about every issue but the war, playing into McCain's preferred field of battle. The dems might be wary of putting a republican, even a line crossing backstabbing one, a heartbeat away from the presidency.
My Take- I hate Hagel with more passion then I hate any other American politician, so I'll make this brief- the democrats will never let him pick a candidate who would pull a 180 on 90% of there platform if something happens to Obama. No way, No how. Bad choice.
ODDS- 30 to 1
Brian Schwietzer- First-Term Governor of Montana.
Pros- A Governor, very popular in his home state, understands rural economic issues and could help Obama close the gap in white, working-class areas. He loves guns and god. Helps obama win Montana and may extend his popularity to the rest of the mountain west area (Colorado, the Dakotas, Wyoming). Has interesting ideas on the use of Coal in America energy policy.
Con: No FP Experience. Unknown, and only really helps in Montana. The far-left would likely balk at his more conservative credentials.
My Take- A good, but unlikely, pick. Obama has others that can do what Schwitzer can better.
ODDS- 25 to 1
Janet Napalitano- Democrat Lady Governor of Arizona.
Pros- Helps with Women, and increases the "Republican Despair Factor" by putting Obama within arms reach of Arizona, McCain's home state. No presidential candidate has ever won without winning there home state.
Cons- Boring. Is to the right of McCain on the immigration issue, meaning that she could fataly wound Obama among Hispanic voters.
My Take- Meh.
ODDS- 22 to 1
Tom Daschel- Former Senate Majority Leader, Obama's earliest supporter, it's rumored that Daschel is the one who convinced Obama to run in the first place.
Pros- He and Obama trust each other. Most of Obama's "people" were once Daschell's people. He compliments Obama ideologically on almost every level. he adds experience and tradition to the ticket, while not seeming tied to the current Washington situation because of his absence from the senate.
Cons- First sitting majority leader to be kicked out off office for generations, he exemplifies the democratic losses that took place from 2000-2006. He is a deep Washington insider, was a lobbyist and has a lobbyist wife. He couldn't even deliver his home state to obama against clinton in the primaries making him all but useless.
My Take- A Good pick. This is the Vice-President Obama wants but his advisers will never let him have. Lets see of T-Dash can stage a comeback.
ODDS- 19 to 1
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