Points By Drew Pritt

I PREDICT….It’s Going To Be Lieberman….TRUST!
May 5, 2008, 11:48 pm
Filed under: Uncategorized

I suspect when John McCain announces his running-mate, the announcement will look a lot like the above picture, and for a myriad of reasons.

Presidential Veepstakes, that time every four years, when we wait for the running mate choices is an exciting time for political animals like yours truly. We sift and sort and debate amongst ourselves, like the staffers of the campaigns, who brings the most strengths and least amount of weaknesses to a campaign. However, we fail sometimes to see the logic and the personalities that go into these choices. I personally believe it will be Lieberman for these reasons. Then I’ll tell you why I have counted out the other potential favorites.

Joe Lieberman (I-Ct.) makes sense for a number of reasons to me. First of all, 2008 is an unusual year and it will require an unusual running mate. Many Democratic voters who are Jewish are uncomfortable with Senator Barack Obama’s wishy-washy stance on protecting the sovreignty of Israel. Should the DNC seat Florida and Michigan (which gives HRC a 55 Delegate lead over Obama and she wins) then the choice of Lieberman needles those Democrats who remember him as the first Democrat to take a moral crusade against Bill Clinton’s philandering while still retaining the fond memories some….and I stress SOME….Democrats remember about the proposed strengths of the Gore-Lieberman ticket and the battle of 2000.

On another note, McCain is comfortable around Lieberman. They are colleagues, know each other, served together, and seem to enjoy each other’s company. Lieberman would be a good surrogate and he’s proven that already on the stump and a Middle Eastern visit. Lieberman is qualified to assume the office should McCain suddenly become unable to and even more so Lieberman retains that faithful quality of an XO to a more senior CO.

Finally, McCain knows Lieberman weathered a stunning primary loss to Ned Lamont, rebounded, beat Lamont and a Republican unknown and has basically held a gun to the head of the Senate Democratic Leadership quietly touting his Independent nature and the ability to pull a Jim Jeffords and sway the balance of power in the Senate until at least the January reorganization after the November elections. McCain likes fiery independence and Lieberman’s selection sends the right message to the Senate that he if elected President will be the Commanding Officer, not Harry Reid or Chuck Schumer or Chris Dodd!


As for Romney, Huckabee, Pawlenty, Crist, Barbour, & Palin, (all incidentally former or current Governors) I am skeptical.

Romney, well mainly because Romney had the money, the look, the lineage, and he blew it. He also gets on McCain’s nerves and would be looking for a quick way to “axe” McCain and steal the chance to move up.

Huckabee….McCain is not ready yet to go that far. Huckabee has a treasure trove of ethical mishaps and the experience McCain in the Keating Five would make him gun shy on Huckabee. Not to mention Huckabee, like Cassius of old, has that lean and hungry look.

Pawlenty is well….Tim Pawlenty. Like Jim Rhodes was for years, yes he is a Governor from a Midwestern state which trends Democrat and is a Roman Catholic. But he barely survived reelection, the Bridge Collapse fiasco really hurt his image, and most Americans will be…Tim Who???

Crist from the ever infamous Florida. Yes at first blush he looks like a Gubernatorial Lieberman but he has a serious drawback for the religious right Republicans. Crist has been under scrutiny and even a late-breaking scandal when he ran for Governor of being a closetted homosexual. Even the potential this is true scares many Democrats and would hinder McCain’s attempt to keep the Republican coalition together.

Barbour is like the coldest biscuit left on the breakfast plate in the morning. Yes he won reelection over a determined and well-financed opponent last year. But he’s Governor of Mississippi and brings nothing but lobbyist and D.C. ties to the table. If McCain is in danger of losing Mississippi in the fall then theres a lot more problems than just a suitable running mate. Also, Barbour’s popularity is dipping and honestly he’s not the most spry of the bunch.

Palin is well like Barbour if her homestate of Alaska is in play, something is seriously wrong. I like that her name is floated and she is rather appealing. She could be the darkhorse pic of bringing many of Lieberman’s strengths without the baggage. But she has picked a big fight with the two power houses of her state, Ted Stevens and Don Young. Whether Stevens and Young (who have a combined total of 75 years experience in Congress) get defeated is one matter. But if McCain insults them and picks Palin then it starts off a new civil war in the party that McCain will not easily survive.

This is my best guess at the Veepstakes game now. I see Lindsey Graham popping up. He’s seeking reelection and Democrats as well as Republicans might love to see Lindsay give up his Senate reelection to join the ticket. But he has Crist problems as well as Immigration differences with the party.

It will be interesting to see what happens but I am resigned to McCain-Lieberman 2008.


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