Now that the speculation about Mitt Romney’s running mate has reached a conclusion, we can ponder the question of whether Vice-President Joe Biden will be swapped out with Secretary of State Hillary Clinton.
Biden has offered much comic relief since his second bumbling bid for the presidency burned out in Iowa…which was a personal record for the Delaware senator since he ended his first White House bid before the first ballot had been cast.
I never did understand what Biden brought to the Democratic ticket. After Barack Obama tapped him as his running mate, Biden was repackaged as Pennsylvania’s “third senator”, not that such a farce was ultimately necessary to win the Keystone State’s electoral votes.
Biden’s main job was to pose (key word) as a foreign policy know-it-all and look like an old politician who would be there to lend a guiding hand to his younger boss, the same duty Dick Cheney handled for George W. Bush. But after a parade of gaffes, Biden made Obama look presidential, if only my comparison.
The book Game Change, which chronicled the more historic than usual 2008 presidential election, was made into a movie but one nugget from the tome that didn’t make the cut in the HBO Sarah Palin-centered film was the often hilariously testy relationship between Democratic nominee for president and the party’s candidate for vice-president.
Reportedly, there was a period when the running mates would not even speak to each other.
With almost four years in the Oval Office under his belt, what incentive does Obama have to retain Biden as part of the ticket?
I see more of an incentive to dump Biden than to keep him, especially with a major upgrade on hand.
While executing a switch would be a sign of weakness, so would bad polls numbers.
And there’s no doubt such talk would be overwhelmed by excitement with the addition of Hillary Clinton to the ticket.
Liberals might not like Bill Clinton as a president who strayed away from the ideological reservation when he saw that it advanced his own political interests, but they admire the fact that Clinton was a twice successful presidential candidate who survived the worse the GOP could throw at him, even if that consisted of an accounting of his own reprehensible behavior in the White House.
For Democrats, the name Clinton equals that word Charlie Sheen made so trendy: winning.
And an Obama-Clinton ticket would be immediately pronounced unbeatable by the media and would trigger a financial bonanza for the Democrats’ campaign coffers. September would be a Valley Forge of sorts for the Romney campaign.
Earlier this year there was a great deal of media speculation that a Biden-Hillary trade was in the works, fed in part by ex-First Lady/US Senator’s statement that she would not continue as Secretary of State for another four years.
Hillary’s presidential ambitions would be served by taking Biden’s place on the ticket. If Obama is re-elected, Clinton would almost assuredly go unchallenged for her party’s nomination in 2016 as a sitting vice-president. Even if the Democrats were to lose the White House in November, the majority of the blame would be deposited on Obama’s doorstep and not on the shoulders of a “reluctant candidate” who dutifully answered the call for the cause.
And if Biden were jettisoned, Clinton would not want to risk the chance of a new rising star once again eclipsing her four years from now.
Who would have thought that while Hillary was sipping champagne in a luxury box at the 2004 Democratic National Convention that she would later lose out to a state legislator being asked to give his first national speech?
The way Biden has been talking lately, he seems as if he is intentionally laying the groundwork for his departure, rhetorically tumbling even more frequently than usual.
Allow the same imagination that envisioned Kelly Ayotte as Romney’s running mate go out on one final limb. The Republicans hold a successful convention as Romney and Paul Ryan finally get the introduction to the electorate the mainstream media has thus far successfully frustrated.
The GOP ticket starts to inch up not just in the national polls but more importantly in swing states and other states that haven’t voted for a Republican presidential candidate since 1988.
Democrats begin to panic as prompted liberal talking heads begin to opine that their party needs more than just another dose of Obama’s trademark soaring rhetoric to reset the presidential race.
Enter Hillary Clinton stage left; exit Joe Biden starboard plank.