Friday, May 23, 2008

Short Fuse has his Short List for VP

Reports confirm that John McCain will entertain some guests at his swingin' campaign lair. And though McCain's been mum on the issue, three of those names have attracted considerable attention: Gov. Charlie Crist of Florida, Gov. Bobby Jindal of Louisiana and former Gov. Mitt Romney of Massachusetts. Of these choices, zero are surprising. Let's take a look:

Charlie Crist - As Florida's governor, he "has never forgotten his humble roots and remains committed to the values that have made America the envy of freedom-loving people for more than two centuries. His public service is defined by tireless devotion to the citizens of Florida, a fundamental belief in the goodness of people, and a rock-solid commitment to the core principles that have allowed his family to succeed—lower taxes, less government and more freedom," according to himself. Good for obvious reasons: his conservative cred, his pull in Florida and his surname's resemblance to a certain Lord and Savior. McCain-Crist '08 has a certain lyrical ring, no?

On the other hand: Many voters might be turned off by idea of a Florida governor on the ticket, given that they think it's still Jeb Bush.

Bobby Jindal - Described by some as the Barack Obama of the Republican Party (though a more accurate parallel might be J.C. Watts), Jindal has made history as the first-ever Indian-American governor, and at 36 is currently the youngest governor in the U.S. He recently appeared on the Tonight Show with Jay Leno and has been hailed by many as the future of the GOP. His addition to the ticket could counterbalance McCain's (highly) elder statesmanship, as well as debunk well-deserved criticism that the party is the exclusive bastion of angry old white guys.

On the other hand: Bob Dole once said of George Bush in the 1980s, "I offer a record, not a resume." Even with a killer resume, how much of a record can a 36-year-old governor have? Given Jindal's legendary tendency for job-hopping, it's uncertain how long he'd even serve as vice president until something better came along. I'd give it two years, tops. Good luck with that McCain-Ford '12 ticket.

Oh, and did I mention he's the governor of Louisiana? Edwin Edwards' consistent heartbeat is the only thing that kept David Duke out of that capitol. Come on.

Mitt Romney - The ex-governor of Massachusetts is another timely and relevant choice - relatively speaking - for the Republicans. He was thoroughly vetted during his own candidacy, which reduces the likelihood of October surprises. In a campaign dogged by lack of support from core GOP bases, Mitt would bring in big business, as well as the religious right and neocon war hawks currently suspicious of McCain's call for only 100 years in Iraq. Perhaps most importantly, Romney would bring in the support of his five sons, battle-scarred veterans of the campaign trail.

On the other hand: See above. If that's The Change We Deserve, pass the Effexor XR.


Terry Troll said...

It is generally accepted that "Sidney" needs a conservative to recapture some of the lost right wing of his party. Does PBJ still qualify? I have heard a lot of discontent from both my right wing friends and on the radio talk shows. Many are starting to call him "just another politician". Of course the word may not get out of La. for a while yet. Is this trip to meet with "Sidney" a ploy by his campaign group to show how diverse his field of consideration is or what?

rhonda said...

"Edwin Edwards' consistent heartbeat is the only thing that kept David Duke out of that capitol."

and then, if lewis black is right, his corpse could probably just barely come in under the wire, too. ha!