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VP picks inspire more laughs than confidence
WHAT'S WITH these vice-presidential picks?
There was a time when presidential candidates picked strong running mates, men with a deep background of leadership, men who inspired confidence.
Suddenly, probably starting with Dan Quayle, that all changed. Now the VP candidate is often someone who looks about as stately as Moe Howard of the Three Stooges.
Case in point: Paul Ryan. Now Ryan seems an OK guy, but even the staunchest Republican has to admit that this long, tall drink of water acts a little goofy at times.
So far, like most recent vice-presidential candidates, he has stuck his foot in his mouth several times and made it seem that he really doesn't know what he is doing.
That's reassuring! All we need is a second-in-command who doesn't know what he is doing. But then, the guy at the top hasn't had a clue for the past decade, either.
Part of this is because presidential candidates wait until the last possible second to pick a running mate. Keep everybody guessing. Play "Fool the Press."
Suddenly, a guy like Ryan gets a call and is asked to be on the GOP ticket. He is probably involved in half a dozen other ventures and hasn't had time to adequately prepare for a national political campaign.
After all, a person can't just drop everything on the off-chance that he might be offered the VP nomination.
So, until he gets up to speed on what's going on (Joe Biden still hasn't), he acts like a goofball who just dropped out of a flying saucer.
Sarah Palin was a great example. She allowed that she was an expert on foreign policy because she lived in Alaska, where she could look out her window and see Russia.
But then, Palin was not on John McCain's ticket because she was a brain surgeon. She was there because she had nice legs and a pretty face and because the GOP felt that having a woman on the ticket would offset having a black man as the Democratic presidential hopeful.
About the best thing that can be said about recent vice-presidential candidates is that they provide comic relief, sort of like the old TV B Westerns where the handsome hero had a Gabby Hayes or Pat Buttram sidekick.