Are You Ready For Clinton-McAuliffe 2016?

Matt Vespa
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Posted: Nov 10, 2015 4:40 PM
Are You Ready For Clinton-McAuliffe 2016?

Over at the Washington Examiner, Paul Bedard wrote about a possible Clinton-McAuliffe 2016 ticket. He cited Rep. Alcee Hastings (D-FL), who told the Hill that McAuliffe should be considered in order to win Virginia:

But Hastings also noted the importance of regional factors as the Democrats hope to secure battleground states. He suggested Virginia Gov. Terry McAuliffe, who chaired Clinton’s 2008 campaign, might be in the mix.

“They’ve got to win Virginia,” said Hastings, who backs Clinton for the Democratic nomination.

Hastings also suggested that Biden, who recently declined a presidential run after months of consideration, might want to remain in his current spot — something that’s never happened but is technically allowed under the Constitution.

“Stranger things have happened,” Hastings said.

Sen. Tim Kaine (D-VA) preemptively ruled out joining the national ticket, saying he likes serving as a U.S. Senator. Yet, there’s also a very good reason why McAuliffe shouldn’t be on the ticket, which doesn’t have to due with his support for gun control or Medicaid expansion:

Kyle Kondik, with the University of Virginia's Center for Politics, is a skeptic of a McAuliffe pick. "I am a skeptic of the idea that VP selections help much in home states. Maybe that person is worth a point or two, but I think especially in our partisan/polarized era there's so little crossover vote that partisanship trumps home state pride for the vast, vast majority of voters. That said, Virginia could very well be the decisive state in 2016, so any little boost could help," he told Secrets.

"I also question the optics of Clinton picking McAuliffe: It would really look, fairly or unfairly, like she was simply elevating one of her cronies to a vitally important job, which wouldn't be a great look for a candidate (Clinton) who often faces questions from the press about whether she is surrounding herself with the right people.

Moreover, given McAuliffe’s failure to flip the state Senate this year, the observation that VPs could help sway their home states. It’s not like Virginia ushered in the McAuliffe governorship in a landslide; he won by only 55,220 votes. If Republican Ken Cuccinelli was able to match the exits Romney got from white men, women, and voters who make over $100,000/year, he probably would have won easily. That’s not exactly a shining endorsement of McAuliffe’s political skill: he was just less sucky than the other guy. Oh, and let's not forget that he lost the 2009 Democratic gubernatorial primary to state Sen. Creigh Deeds, who got trounced by Bob McDonnell in the general.

At the same time, given his penchant to support Obamacare, which has decimated Democrats nationally, and gun control, which only ends up dividing the Democratic Party, I’m sure this would be a dream ticket … for Republicans.