Veepstakes

   MSNBC’s having some fun speculating about John McCain’s VP choice, ruinning a “Veepstakes” feature on its website: http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/24672458/

   32 contenders are arrayed in brackets.  Charlie Crist– much-ballyhooed as a potential VP pick in his home state– rates no better than a #2 seed in his bracket (behind South Dakota Senator John Thune?  Really?). 

   The punditocracy doesn’t take Crist very seriously as a Veep pick.  A National Journal quiz of political consultants found only 4% of them thought Crist was McCain’s best choice– down from 6% from their last survey, in February.

   Jeb Bush, also a #2 seed– amazing, given that the Bush “brand” is mired in below 30% approval ratings right now.  I have yet to meet anyone, inside or outside of politics, who thinks Jeb will do anything but bide his time this year.

    A third Floridian makes the list as a real dark horse– Cong. Connie Mack III, son of FL’s former Senator, who represents a district on the Sunshine State’s west coast.

   You’re invited to vote on the contenders, with the field being weeded out over the next month or so.  A prediction– Mitt Romney will emerge the victor, with Mike Huckabee an outside choice.

   Once that’s done, look for a similar “point-n-click” game as to the Democrats #2 slot.  In that case, Florida’s Senator Nelson is sure to be somewhere on the list.  He always is, more as a nod to Florida’s pivotal place on the electoral map than because of anything he’s done on Capitol Hill.  

   Remember– most anything that gets out in public at this point is probably pandering to a state, a constituency, or a politician.  Remember the highly-improbable leak that then-Miami-Dade Mayor Alex Penelas was on Al Gore’s VP “short list”?

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One Response

  1. Here’s an important piece of advice: If it looks like it’s going to be McCain/Palin anyway (and that should be a “no brainer” for Team McCain), McCain should announce NOW or VERY SOON, rather than later towards the convention. There’s currently a growing chorus for Obama/Hillary (as VP) ticket (in fact the Dems are likely aware of the Palin phenomenon). If the GOP waits while movement for Hillary as VP grows — even worse until after it is solidified that Hillary will/could be VP pick — selecting Palin will be portrayed by Dems/liberal media more as a reaction by GOP selecting its own female (overshawdoing Palin’s own remarkable assets), rather than McCain taking the lead on this. Selecting Palin now or early (contrary to the punditocracy) will mean McCain will be seen as driving the course of this campaign overwhelmingly, and the DEMS will be seen as merely reacting. And, there’s absoultely no down-side to this because even if Hillary is a no-go as VP for Obama, the GOP gains by acting early. McCain the maverick. Palin the maverick. Do it now!

    There’s no reason, and actually substantial negative, in McCain waiting to see what the Dems do first insofar as his picking Palin as VP, because, no matter who Obama picks, Palin is by far (and I mean far) the best pick for McCain and the GOP, especially in this time of GOP woes. The GOP can be seen as the party of real ‘change’ (albeit I hate that mantra, change, change, bla bla), while not really having to change from GOP core conservative values, which Palin more than represents.

    In light of the current oil/energy situation, as well as the disaffected female Hillary voters situation, and growing focus on McCain’s age and health, Palin is more than perfect — now.

    (Perhaps Team McCain is already on to this.)

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