Wouldn't it be great if we lived in a world where presidents facing a potentially tough re-election could simply turn to the op-ed pages of The Washington Post and find campaign advice two years in advance? Thankfully, Barack Obama lives in that world and can take David Ignatius' recommendation -- he calls it a "second-term masterstroke" -- to choose Hillary Clinton as his running mate. Although the column doesn't actually present any evidence that vice presidents make a difference, we can just assume that this is good advice because we can trust newspapers to describe political reality without resorting to baseless speculation.Needless to say, there is no such evidence. On the other hand, while we don't have much evidence concerning what happens when a president dumps his VP for no good reason, we do have two historical cases of presidents asking their entire cabinets to resign: Nixon after winning reelection, and Carter after the malaise speech. Safe to say that neither one worked out well. Also safe to say that there are somewhere on the order of zero Americans who are unhappy with Barack Obama but would change their minds if Hillary Clinton was demoted from Secretary of State to VP.
Tuesday, August 24, 2010
I was thinking of doing a post on this, but I can't top Mori Dinauer: