15 August 2008

The Veepstakes, Part V: John Fitzgerald Heinz-Kerry? Really?

Given the wealth of solid veep choices for the Pope of Hope -- foreign-policy wonks like Joe Biden, Wes Clark and Jack Reed, red-state moderates like Evan Bayh, Tim Kaine and Bill Richardson and the potential party-unifying force of Hillary Clinton -- it's mind-blowing that Obama would even consider choosing John Kerry as his running mate. But during the last two weeks, reports have surfaced that Team Hope has in fact been vetting the junior senator from Massachusetts for the Changemaker's #2 spot.

The choice of Kerry would be a terrible blunder by Obama, and as a McCain supporter, I'd dance in the streets. Obama himself is an exact replica of the windsurfing legend: a condescending, patronizing political extremist who doesn't resonate with Reagan Democrats and, more broadly, that center swath of voters that is so crucial to winning any presidential election. Sure, Kerry brings foreign-policy experience, but if such is Obama's concern, why not pick Biden or, better yet, Reed?

Voters cast their ballots for Kerry in 2004, and the senator was beaten by a highly unpopular incumbent during the height of the Bush administration's mismanagement in Iraq. The best -- and safest -- bet would be to pick Bayh, a wildly popular governor-turned-senator from a solidly Republican state who, at 53, has both the executive experience that Obama lacks and the ability to reach voters in the center.

I can't believe that anyone on Team Hope thinks choosing Kerry is a good idea. But I'm all for it.

No comments: