Here’s my Post-Potomac Primary GOP take

Here are my assumptions:

1) McCain will be the GOP Nominee

2) He will need a running mate

3) He’s heard of this guy Huckabee

Yo, Johnny - I got Kansas up in here

Mike Huckabee is very clearly campaigning for the Vice-Presidency. He simply cannot win, and he knows it. He made a very weird statement tonight that:

I mean, we understand, in terms of the conventional process, barring, you know, some something that could happen along the way in the campaign for Senator McCain, or if he doesn’t acquire enough delegates, that’s really the possibility, that it could go to the convention.

(What’s he mean, “something could happen?” Like, McCain could die, and he wants to position himself just in case? You think Romney would have something to say about that? Giuliani?)

But seriously. Huckabee wants to be VP. So here’s the question: Why hasn’t McCain offered it to him yet?

I see a few possible reasons:

1) It’s too early.

2) He thinks that Huckabee can campaign for himself better as a presidential candidate than a vice-presidential candidate. Huckabee keeps himself and the GOP in general at a higher profile.

3) He doesn’t want to pick Huckabee. Huckabee knows this, and is trying to force his hand with (embarrassingly for McCain) reasonably tight races – 24-60 in Kansas, 50-41 in Virginia, 55-30 in Maryland. (Those aren’t quite the numbers you’re looking for if you’re the presumptive nominee for the GOP, and you’re looking to wrap this up and consolidate your party. )

Is it too early? John Kerry didn’t pick Edwards until early July 2004. Bush picked Cheney in late July of 2000, and Gore waited until August. Clinton also waited until July of 92. So yes, it is too early.

I don’t quite buy the “higher profile” argument. It’s not in McCain’s interest to have Huckabee still in the race, even if Huck can’t win. Huckabee’s wins and moral victories only serve to demonstrate, on a national scale, that the GOP is of many many minds about McCain. They wish they could have a candidate who shared more of their values, (but they wish the candidate that does share their values was qualified to be president…) but they don’t. So its almost out of protest that republicans go to the polls for mike huckabee, it seems.

I think it breaks down like this – McCain doesn’t really respect Huckabee. He’s a nice guy and all but… McCain doesn’t want him on the ticket. Huckabee is responding by demostrating that McCain needs him to deliver the “true conservatives” who see McCain as a liberal (As a liberal, I think I can safely say that McCain ain’t one, but far be it from me to tell the GOP whom not to hate.).

I think that McCain is going to have to bow to the pressure that Huckabee is putting on him, but he hasn’t done that quite yet. I think that he needs to, and soon – he needs to let Huckabee know that if he’s a good boy, then he can be VP. But stop racking up those wins!


2 Responses to “Here’s my Post-Potomac Primary GOP take”

  1. 1 jeje February 14, 2008 at 8:49 pm

    I don’t see how grabbing Huck helps John. The only occasion I imagine is in which the folks that are more right wing than John will, without Huck as VP, vote for some third party goon on the libertarian or right-to-life ticket in the national election and this will weaken his battle against the democrat. You think it’ll happen?

  2. 2 ishum February 14, 2008 at 9:07 pm

    In my mind, it’s not a question of “who will these right-wing fuckers vote for if they can’t have their santimonious mexican-bashing reganbot?”

    I think that if we were to assume that every one in the nation were to vote, then Huck’s presence wouldn’t really help out Johnny. But it seems to me that the right is going to stay home next november, and the the democrats (if BO is the nominee) will come out in droves.

    If hillary is the nominee, I think we’re back to blah turn out on both sides. I think that a Hillary v. McCain election is just plain old liberals versus conservatives. And sorta mushy ones on each side, really.

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