With the Democratic nomination nearly wrapped up, Political experts are beginning to look at who she may select as her Vice President. When selecting a VP, there are a few things to look at:
- Does the VP win you any states? Clinton will first need to make sure that she gets elected. BY choosing a VP who could help win an important state like Ohio she would be making a strategic pick to ensure that she becomes President.
- Clinton picks someone that will help unite the party. With Senator Bernie Sanders still going strong Clinton may have to pick a nominee who will excite the Sanders supporters to donate to her campaign, knock on doors for her and come out and vote the way that they have for Sanders.
- Racial Diversity. Does Clinton break from the tradition of having a white man on the ticket and instead picks the first Latino or African American VP. Clinton will be relying on big turnout form both groups so creating some racial diversity could go a long way towards exciting these groups.
- Regional Diversity. With Clinton’s base being in New York, it would make sense for Clinton to look outside the Northeast for her VP candidate.
- Someone who can govern. Clinton could look past the election and decide that she needs a Vice President who is in the vein of Joe Biden, someone she can send to the Hill and help her get legislate.
So with these criteria set, who is she going to pick? Here are my favorites in no specific order:
The former Governor of Virginia could go a long way towards making sure that she wins the swing state. Kaine, a hugely popular former Governor and current Senator, has an operation already in place to turn out voters in the state meaning that Clinton could spend time and money on other important swing states. Add in the fact that Clinton confidant Terry McCauliffe is the Governor and this pick could make Virginia solidly Blue. Kaine would also help with the Latino community. While white, Kaine is fluent in Spanish having done missionary work in Central America. This could be a good compromise in reaching out to Latino voters while keeping a white man on the ticket. Kaine was also the first elected official to support President Obama in 2008 so putting him on the ticket may help reach out to disaffected Obama supporters.
The progressive favorite, Warren being on the ticket would go a long way towards bringing many Sanders supporters to Clinton. With a reputation for fighting the good fight on issues like breaking up the big banks, many on the left wanted Warren to run for President this year. It could even be said that the Draft Warren campaign formed the basis for Sanders support. While a Warren pick would fire up the left, she brings little to the table in regards to reaching out to those in the middle. She is significantly more liberal than Clinton and represents a state that Clinton is sure to win. If Sanders supporters continue to cause trouble at conventions across the country and threaten to disrupt the Democratic National Convention Clinton may be forced to pick Warren to calm them down, but otherwise she gains very little from this pick. Warren has not spent much time in the Senate so she will not bring long term relationship and as a white woman adds no diversity to the ticket.
The current Senator from Ohio, Brown may be the front runner right now. He has strong credentials with the liberal wing of the party and has staked his reputation on opposing bad trade deals like NAFTA and the TPP. Trump has already let it be known that the Bill Clinton’s support for NAFTA and Hillary’s past support for the TPP will be a campaign issue in November. Clinton also lost Michigan to Sanders largely on anger from voters over her support for Free Trade. By picking Brown, Clinton could ensure that she wins Ohio, an important swing state, and does well in the Rust Belt states that have been hit hard by failed free trade deals. Brown also has strong support from unions, particularly more blue collar unions in Midwest. Suring up union support could be key in winning the massive turnout game that is needed in industrial swing states like Pennsylvania, Ohio and Wisconsin.
Currently the Secretary of Housing and Urban Development, Castro is seen as an up and comer in the party. With the selection of Castro, Clinton would not only have a Latino but a young person as well. By adding some youth to the ticket she could reach out to the younger Sanders supporters who feel that politics is not representative of them. Castro has been floated by many in the Hispanic community for months. With the Castro pick, Clinton would also be setting the party up with a presumptive candidate for President when her term is up. While Clinton will need all of the Latino support she can get to beat Trump, many polls already show Latino’s fired up to vote against Trump, so the increase in voters may be minimal. However from an optics standpoint the selection of a Latino could go a long way to ensuring that Hispanics stay with the Democratic Party.
The current Secretary of Labor, his name has also been floated for months by many in and out of Hispanic political circles. Perez has been seen quite a bit on the campaign trail supporting Clinton and brings with him the support of many in the Labor community, a key constituency for Clinton. He has also served as Assistant Attorney General. In that role he spent a lot of time working on civil rights and voting cases which could help to embolden minority voters who feel like they have been attacked as Republicans have rolled back key provisions of the Voting Rights Act and passed Voter ID laws. Perez’s biggest downfall is that he has not been an elected official in Washington. He also is from Maryland; a state Clinton will easily win. This ticket could come across as a little to inside the beltway for many peoples taste.
While I think these are the front runners for the position, Clinton could certainly decide to buck the trend and pick someone that no one is looking at. Here are the dark horse picks:
The popular NJ Senator would definitely fire up the African American vote, but would give no geographic diversity.
Why not Feel the Bern and pick the one person who could ensure that his supporters all come over to Team Clinton? Could this be the Dream ticket that some hoped for with Obama Clinton?
He is already there, why move out? One of the best VP selections Biden could bring a sense of security to position and he has shown a great skill at not trying to overshadow or undercut the President.
The first Senator to support Sanders, he comes from the Pacific Northwest giving geographic diversity to the ticket. He could be an important bridge between the Clinton and Sanders campaign.
Who do you think she will pick?
© 2016 Brian Young