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Clinton/Obama? Obama/Clinton?

clinton_obama.jpg [1]Both Democratic candidates were asked if they would consider the other as a running mate. Neither gave a smart answer. Each of them is fighting to set themselves apart from the other, and yet when asked about the VP slot, each gave an answer that suddenly sounded like they could easily work side-by-side.  And enjoy it.

Clinton’s answer:

“Well, that may … be where this is headed, but of course, we have to decide who’s on the top of the ticket,”

then later…

“Obviously, it’s premature for either of us to address it,” she said.

She added: “There is a lot of … interest in that. Many Democrats are hoping for that. We have to sort through this nominating process to see … who ends up as the nominee.

“But we’re going to put together a winning ticket. The most important thing is winning in November.”

I love the way she likes to speak for both herself and Obama (I’ve seen her do that before… her attempt at sounding like she’s in control). But talk about wimpy. And the first answer almost sounded as if she had not prepared herself ahead of time (I’m guessing that’s the case). Her staff dropped the ball on this by not having a pat answer prepared. Then during the later interview, it looks like she was ready. But still, it sounds like she’s not very sure of herself, like she’s trying to hedge every possible scenario, and almost ready to admit defeat.

Then Obama:

“I’ve said before I respect Senator Clinton as a public servant, a tenacious opponent. I think it is very premature to start talking about a joint ticket,”

The “I respect Senator Clinton…” line is his standard hedge. But he seems to be more in command of himself and events around him… dare I say more Presidential? But I think he misses the mark.

Both candidates make it sound like they have (suddenly) stopped opposing each other. Perhaps this is a means to an end, but I think neither brings the appropriate answer.

Which is: “No comment”.

I’m sure the end result each of them has in mind is to end up the VP if they don’t win the No. 1 spot. If that is true, I think it’s pathetic. It’s a subtle form of begging and entirely unbecoming a potential future leader of the Free World. If this is how either of them will behave when vulnerable, we are in more trouble than I ever thought.

I’m sure that a joint ticket has some competitive advantages for the party… it’s very likely that kind of ticket could devastate the Republicans… you’re probably going to have all of both candidates’ supporters voting for this ticket, seeing the strong potential of “co-presidents”, as well as the emotional high that many Liberals would have at the thought of the first President and Vice-President team made up of no white males. They would be the first of each type (woman, African-American) in either position, and both at the same time. Maybe they’ll switch spots in 4 years just to cover all of the historical bases?

Sorry, I digress. The point is, if this happens, it will create a greater sense of a “dream team”, powerhouse ticket, and Republicans will have a lot of work to do to overcome this emotional, magical, marketing impact with a solid ticket (the VP candidate will need to be strong Presidential material) and a top-to-bottom platform that knocks the socks off the electorate and demonstrates the real weaknesses in the Democrats’ policies. McCain’s Campaign Manager will have the biggest challenge of any political career.

Hat Tip, Reuters [2].