Tis the season for the veepstakes! Between now and the conventions, which are less than a month away, Hillary Clinton the presumptive nominee on the Democratic side and Donald Trump the presumptive nominee on the Republican side will announce their respective nominees for vice president.
On the Clinton side, the conversation is mainly focused on who she will pick that augments her experience, temperament and can pass the “chemistry test”. In other words, Clinton’s choice will reflect what is politically expected of her. Pick someone who will do no harm, someone who will add energy to the ticket and, ultimately, someone who can be president if something happened to her.
My hunch is that Clinton will choose someone like U.S. Sen. Tim Kaine, a Virginian who is a moderate Democrat and who has the wisdom and judgment to become president if need be. Kaine, who is more cerebral than most politicians, is exactly what attracts Clinton: a workhorse and not a show horse. Someone who gets excited about policy and is more interested in the substance than seeing his name in the newspaper.
Clinton’s political aides most likely want her to choose a younger politician who may represent the future of the political party, such as Joaquin Castro, a congressman who represents San Antonio. Castro, along with his twin brother, Julian, the current secretary of Housing and Urban Development, are clearly being groomed for higher office. There is also political pressure for Clinton to nominate a person who represents the progressive wing of the party, such as Sen. Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts or Sen. Bernie Sanders, her rival who still has not dropped out of the nomination race.
Clinton is in the drivers seat with her choices and there is little doubt that she has the home court advantage to choose someone who is anxiously waiting by the phone.
But what about Trump? Who will say yes to his offer?
Any political observer knows that the Trump road to the White House is either paved in gold or paved with booby-traps that are bound to blow up at any moment. In other words, the unorthodox Trump candidacy just might go all the way to winning the White House – and it just may – as the billionaire has defied all conventional wisdom. Whomever says yes could be apart of that success or it’s going to be landslide for Clinton. That can leave Trump and his running mate laughingstocks for generations to come.
Trump’s dilemma is who will say yes to someone who sucks so much oxygen out of the room.
The bottom line is that we do not know who Trump or Clinton will choose in the coming days. Regardless of their choice, let’s hope that wisdom and will trump politics, and both candidates choose a running mate who can contribute to our national dialogue and offer meaningful solutions to cure our nation’s ills.