Sunday, May 12, 2013

Sunday Question for Liberals

Mother's Day, also. I know it's impossible to separate this question from whatever one thinks about Hillary Clinton, but give it a try anyway: How important to you is it for the Democrats to nominate a woman for president in 2016? How important is it for you for the Democrats to nominate a woman for VP if they don't select a woman for president?


  1. I want the ticket to feature talented progressives, the best Democrats, regardless of gender. So I'd be fine with, say, a Joe Biden-Deval Patrick or Marty O'Malley-Mark Udall ticket. That said, I'd definitely like to see a woman on the ticket (though I don't want to see Hillary Clinton as the presidential nominee). If, for example, Elizabeth Warren won the presidential nomination or Hilda Solis was picked for Veep, I'd be thrilled.

  2. My feeling is that if there's not a woman on the 2016 ticket, there ought to be a good reason for it. I'm ambivalent about Clinton, and like Scott said above, I would gladly support a ticket of two talented progressives who happened to be men. But with Warren, Gillibrand, Klobuchar, and maybe others available, I think a male nominee would, justly, be under great pressure to pick a qualified woman.

  3. If a dude wins the presidential nomination, then so be it, but "being a woman" is such a strong qualification for VP in and of itself that I have a hard time even conceiving a set of credentials strong enough to recommend a second man on the ticket over Clinton, Sebelius, Napolitano, Warren, Klobuchar, Solis, Baldwin, Shaheen, Gillibrand, et al.

    There is no absolute set of qualfications for the VP position that were sent down from Mt. Sinai on stone tablets. The position is what the nominee/president wants it to be. Choosing a generic man over a woman would be a pretty strong signal to the party from the nominee that he didn't regard representational equity for women to be a significant goal for himself or his administration.

    To say nothing of the fact that, like Obama, he'll probably only have gotten into the position of being able to make the choice by defeating a woman, and dashing the hopes of a lot of her supporters to have a woman on the ticket. The chance to elect the first black president blunted that disappointment somewhat for Obama, and I doubt that another white guy, or the second black president would have the same oomph. And there aren't any Hispanic men who'd be plausible presidential nominees at this point.

  4. Not really that important for me. I want someone who can win and be a effective progressive President. I'm not ruling out that Hilary can be that person, but I certainly have my concerns. Having said that, I'm just not a big fan of identity politics in general, although I think they are great when they elect people I like.

  5. Not that important to me personally, but after the 2008 HRC-Obama primary, the Obama presidency, and our political growth as a nation, having a woman on the ticket makes political sense. I'm not into identity politics, but having to middle-aged white males on the ticket would seem like revanchism.

    As pointed out by Lestor, plenty of qualified women to take the #2 slot. If HRC does not run, I think it's unlikely the POTUS nominee will be female. If HRC does run, highly likely she wins the primary and the VPOTUS nominee will be male. So I think a gender-balanced ticket is most likely, followed by an all-male ticket, with an all female ticket least likely.

  6. I would love to see a woman on the ticket, but in the primary I would vote for the candidate I prefer, man or woman. Hillary could very well be that candidate, but she was going to be last time until Obama got in.

    If a man wins the nomination, I would hope he picks a woman to run with.

    Having said that, given the current state of politics in this country, I am almost certainly voting for the Democratic nominee even if the ticket is two old white guys.

  7. It would be a plus for either (or both!) side of the ticket to be a woman but more important is that they have solid credentials (Governor or Senator), strong political skills (aka charisma), and the right positions on the most important public policy issues. If the only woman who runs is, for instance, Blanche Lincoln, then I'd take Biden or some other man over her by a mile. I'm not a fan of Hillary Clinton and would prefer another woman such as Warren or Gillibrand or a male candidate if Clinton runs.

  8. So long as the process is gender neutral on the part of the party, I don't care. I think 2008 largely qualified, for example. HRC faced some gender bias from the press, yes. But, despite what Republicans say, the press is not part of the Democratic Party. I don't recall other candidates questioning HRC on defense, asking her about her children, or anything else. The only thing I recall is questions about her "co-president," which would ordinarily be quite a gendered question--"Honey, what will the real person in your marriage do once you're elected president?" However, in the case of Bill Clinton, I think that was a legitimate question: former president, and hardly a shrinking wallflower. If a DiFi candidacy (I know, too old--just using her as an example) faced questions about her husband that WEREN'T related to his real estate dealings from other candidate camps, then I would consider that gender bias. If any female candidate OTHER than HRC gets the "what's your husband going to do?" question from other campaigns, that's bias.

  9. I think people are underestimating how much partisans (i.e., nearly everyone who votes) will stick with their parties once you get through to convention.

    Remember in 2008 when people were worried whether Hilary people (PUMA anyone) would support Obama?

    All things being equal, it would probably be good to get a woman on the ticket if Hilary doesn't run, but in the end it won't matter that much


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