Who ever heard of a vice-presidential race? Who could possibly care if there was one? No one has ever held the office in respect. “Cactus Jack” Garner, Roosevelt’s first vice president, concluded that the office wasn’t “worth a pitcher of warm spit.” Some say that Jack actually filled that pitcher with a different bodily fluid. I don’t know. I wasn’t there at the time and I’m not from Texas. The cast of a Pulitzer-winning 1931 musical included Vice President Alexander Throttlebottam, who was so obscure he had to spend most of his time in office trying to get a District of Columbia library card.

Presidential candidates usually pick their running mates to “balance the ticket.” John Fitzgerald Kennedy picked Lyndon Baynes Johnson because he needed a Southerner. Reagan chose George H.W. Bush because he needed a GOP mainstream pragmatist. It’s assumed, this spring that Good Ol’ Joe Biden has the Democratic nomination in his pocket. Asking the Vermont Socialist to balance the ticket won’t work. Good Ol’ Joe (GOJ hereafter) needs to edge away from the fantasy left to avoid alarming moderate voters. He can’t risk inflaming the socialist fantasists and its not clear that the chairman of the Vermont Fidel Castro Fan Club would be willing to “sell out” to a corporate Democrat.

GOJ announced some time ago that white women will not be considered. No point in talking about Senator Amy Klobuchar (D. Minn.). The reliably liberal goose-steppers who ornament the San Francisco editorial board made the case for Amy as a seasoned (13 years in the Senate), politician who wins Republican votes and avoids promising bribes to the voters what are “easy to make and impossible to fulfill.” This seems to have appealed to a lot of voters.

Alas, Amy declared on June 18 that Joe Biden should pick a woman of color (WOC) as his running mate. “After what I’ve seen in my state, what I’ve seen across the country,” she explained on MSNBC, “this is a historic moment and America must seize on this moment. I truly believe, as I actually told the vice president last night when I called him, that I think this is a moment to put a woman of color on that ticket.” Putting it a little differently while retaining the essential meaning: “No white woman need apply.”

What?! Not even Elizabeth Warren? No. Not even Liz. The AP’s Will Weissert is a day behind current events. On June 17 he reported that “Warren’s Outreach to Black Voters Could Help VP Standing.” Will writes, “some black leaders say Warren’s progressive politics, economic populism and specific policy proposals addressing everything from maternal mortality to the coronavirus could put her in a strong position.” The AP writer finds some other self-appointed spokesmammals for all Black women who say nice things about her. Google him if you’re interested in additional bursts of hot air.

Senator Warren (D-Harvard) is irredeemably white. Her plan to pass as a Cherokee convinced no one outside of Harvard’s law school. Attempt to self-identify as an Afro-American? Seriously? Her desperate pitches to POC voters gathered just five percent of the POC vote during the primaries. It appears that GOJ’s vice presidential search has begun a new round of sifting and sorting with Warren still on the list along with several black women. These include Sen. Kamala Harris of California; Susan Rice, who served as President Barack Obama’s national security adviser; Atlanta Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms; and Rep. Val Demings. New Mexico Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham, a Latina, is also being considered. Putting a Latina on the short list was tactful, but I don’t know how seriously the governor is being considered. The Blacks and Latina’s are rivals for political power inside the Democratic party.

Val Demings rose from the ranks to become Orlando Florida’s chief of police. She has recently addressed her “brothers and sisters in blue” in a conciliatory way. I have no idea how her black brothers and sisters will react. Could turn out to be problematic.

Although Warren is far too white to fill Throttlebottom’s shoes, she shows aspiring liberal Democrats how to win friends and influence people in liberal Afro-American political circles. When asked by Fatima Goss Graves, president and CEO of the National Women’s Law Center, how she talked with white relatives and friends about the protest movement. Warren replied she stresses the need for non-blacks to educate themselves on the African American perspective. “You’ve got to stop talking,” she said, “and start listening.”

This month she joined the Black Lives Matter chanters and fist-wavers outside the White House. Liz brought her husband and Bailey. Bailey is her golden retriever. She is demanding an overhaul of policing nationwide. She introduced legislation prohibiting the use of Confederate names and symbols from all U.S. military assets.

In sum, Warren knows how to sound humble and knows which causes are attracting attention just now. How much attention was she paying 10 years ago? How will these gestures improve the lives of the nation’s POCs. I’m at a loss. My readers must guess for themselves.

It appears that Stacey Abrams is not on the V.P. short list despite strenuous self-promotion. I confess that none of my wives or inamorata ever praised my intuitive powers, but my intuition is that if Abrams is not chosen and Biden chooses a white running mate Stacey will denounce him as a racist.

John Frary of Farmington, the GOP candidate for U.S. Congress in 2008, is a retired history professor, an emeritus Board Member of Maine Taxpayers United, a Maine Citizen’s Coalition Board member, and publisher of FraryHomeCompanion.com. He can be reached at [email protected]

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