Man Without Qualities

Monday, May 31, 2004

Dream Team

Some people suggest that John Kerry would love to have John McCain as his vice presidential running mate. Such people have a CBS poll indicating that a Kerry/McCain ticket is a winner. Senator Hillary Clinton recently said that she could support Senator John McCain as the Democrats' vice presidential partner for John Kerry.

It's curious that Senator Clinton's statement has not (to my knowledge) been analyzed together with a still-obvious truth: Hillary Clinton almost certainly does not want John Kerry to be elected in November because his election would sour her own presidential ambitions. She therefore likely believes a Kerry/McCain ticket would further the result she desires: a Democratic loss in November. And in my view Senator Clinton would be right in holding such a belief.

Unlike Senator Clinton, those who naively pine for John McCain to run as vice president with John Kerry cannot have spent much time considering how poorly Senator McCain's personality meets the requirements of a vice presidential nominee. The first requirements of a vice presidential nominee are to remain quiet when told to, and to subordinate all previously held and expressed beliefs to the needs of the presidential nominee. Does that sound like John McCain? The obligations of a vice presidential nominee in the area of self-abnegation go far beyond being a mere "team player" - and John McCain has shown no inclination or ability to be a team player since he assumed federal office.

Perhaps the naive McCain-for-VP supporters should cast their minds back to consider the fate and agonies of poor old Joe Lieberman. He surrendered many of the most important issues that had defined him politically and personally for most of his career, and essentially lost his personal credibility and most of his dignity in the process. He even lost some of his religious orientation. All to serve the needs of the feckless, bloated Al Gore. Sad.

Arch-narcissistic John McCain simply would not and could not submit to anything like what Joe Lieberman endured without a peep. But he would have to. Indeed, the political and issues gap between Senators McCain and Kerry is far wider in most areas than the gap between Senator Lieberman and Al Gore was. At least Al Gore had once been a nominal Democratic centrist! And when John McCain could endure no more, and had to speak his conscience and his ego to the world, sure disaster would follow for the Kerry campaign. It's almost bound to happen if he's nominated. Even John McCain seems to sense it.

And smart people, like Hillary Clinton, know it all for a fact. That silly CBS poll and various Democratic media McCainiacs give her cover for her bona fides in advancing his name. One's admiration for her grows.

But John Kerry seems not to have a clue. I hope he never catches on. I'm with Hillary on this one.

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