Monday, February 22, 2016

Who Will Be Trump's VP?

As much as many hate to admit it, at this point Donald Trump has to be seen as the significant favorite to win the GOP presidential nomination. Which raises a question I hadn't thought of before -- who would be his VP choice?

It's a tough question. Obviously, the Republican primary has been one of the nastiest in recent memory -- I think we can rule out a Trump/Bush or Trump/Cruz ticket, for example. And Trump is notably disconnected from the establishment, which gives him little leverage with high-profile elected Republicans on the outside of the nomination race. His only gubernatorial-level endorser is Sarah Palin, and even Trump can't be dumb enough to repeat that disaster (can he?).

Basically, I see three possibilities:

1) One of the seven dwarves. There were so many Republican candidates for President, but a large swath of them never really emerged from obscurity and so didn't really catch the brunt of a Donald Trump temper tantrum (or at least, it happened long enough ago that we'll all have forgotten about it by now). So even though it can't be any of the "front-runners" -- Bush, Rubio, Cruz, Walker, etc. -- a Pataki or a Jindal would be reputable enough without being saddled by a week of footage of Trump calling them "losers" (maybe just an hour or so).

2) Another businessman sort -- a Lee Iacocca type. Trump obviously doesn't care for Republican politicians, and it's not like he's going to run away from his lack of political experience. So why not double-down? Are two rich white Wall Street Captains of Industry really any less electable than one?

3) Former Massachusetts Senator Scott Brown. He's literally one of two (former) federal-elected officials to have endorsed Trump, and the other, former Virginia Rep. Virgil Goode, isn't even a Republican anymore. Brown actually seems like he would make a strong pick -- he cut a moderate enough profile to briefly hold a Massachusetts Senate seat -- but it could further inflame the "he's not a true conservative" contingent of the GOP (though surely at some point that branch has to engage in some self-reflection about what "true conservative" is, right?). If I had to venture a prediction, he'd be it.

But those are just off-the-cuff thoughts. Who are your predictions?


Justin said...

Choosing Ben Carson could help mollify evangelical Christian who might otherwise oppose Trump or stay home.

Justin said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
EW said...

I imagine Trump would want to go evangelical.

But many people suggest that Kasich is basically running to be Vice President. Sometimes a president wants to pick an attack dog for the role of VP to do the dirty work while the top of the ticket stays above it all. Trump is perfectly fine doing his own dirty work -- indeed, he can't help himself -- so maybe he'd want to go the opposite direction and pick a conciliator for VP. And that's Kasich. Plus, Trump needs to win Ohio....