This opinion piece was written on Monday morning for publishing on Wednesday. Due to the nature of presidential politics, some elements of this opinion may be outdated.
With less than three months until American voters decide who will be the next President of the United States; US Senators Barack Obama and John McCain have yet to decide who they will choose for their vice-presidential running mate.
On the Democratic side, several prominent Democratic politicians have been named likely choices for the vice-presidency, including: Delaware Senator Joseph Biden, Virginia Governor Tim Kaine, New Mexico Governor Bill Richardson, Indiana Senator Evan Bayh, and of course, former Democratic rival turned Obama supporter, Hillary Clinton.
For the Republicans, there are Minnesota Governor Tim Pawlenty, former Massachusetts Governor and rival Mitt Romney, former Pennsylvania Governor Tom Ridge, Florida Governor Charlie Christ, and a dark-horse candidate, Alaska Governor Sarah Palin.
As the second most powerful person in American government, the Vice-President will certainly be an important decision for both candidates. For Obama, he will need to find an individual capable of bringing experience to the Democratic ticket. For McCain, he will need to shore up conservative support.
Evan Bayh, a former Hillary Clinton supporter, would be the perfect candidate for Barack Obama. Bayh, 52, is a centrist Democrat from the Republican state of Indiana. As a former Governor and son of a former US Senator, Bayh brings with him political experience required to balance out the Democratic team.
Additionally, since it is quite clear Senator Obama will not announce Hillary Clinton as his running mate, Bayh could heal the rift caused during the lengthy Democratic primary between Clinton and Obama supporters.
Republican John McCain could name dark-horse candidate Sarah Palin, current governor of Alaska. Palin, 44, would convince conservatives that John McCain does stand for conservative values.
Palin was elected Alaska’s first female and youngest governor in 2006. Daring in challenging the Republican elite, she challenged then-governor Frank Murkowski, promising to bring change and ethics reform.
When her latest child was revealed to have Down syndrome disorder, Palin, a staunch conservative and a pro-life individual, stood by her Christian beliefs and chose not to terminate her pregnancy.
Her conservative principles would help John McCain solidify votes among Republican and Republican-leaning voters. Palin could possibly help McCain snatch a few disgruntled Clinton supporters and Democratic-leaning women to cast their ballots for Republicans.
Adding Palin, would balance McCain’s old age on the Republican ticket.
As the days draw closer to their respective party nomination, both Barack Obama and John McCain could announce their vice-presidential pick in just a few short days.
The Democrats will meet on August 25-28, 2008 in Colorado. Republicans will hold their national convention in Minnesota, from September 1-4, 2008.
This opinion will be published in the Temple City Voice on Wednesday, August 20, 2008. This views of this author does not reflect the views of the Temple City Voice or its staff.