Help Wanted: Vice Presidential candidate. Requirements: must have low morals, be willing to be constantly insulted, and have extremely thick skin. Skills needed: must be expert boot-licker, liar, excuse-maker, and yes-man.
I wonder if there is anyone left who is willing to be Donald Trump’s running mate? I have heard of several in just the last two days who have said they are definitely “not interested”, and I wonder if there is anybody left who would even consider the position. It would be political suicide, I am certain. Trump has recently broken his own record for offensive social and political bluster, both with his unwarranted criticism of Judge Gonzalo Curiel, and then this week with his offensive, vile remarks in the wake of the Orlando massacre.
Some who were being considered have plainly said, “Thanks, but no thanks.” Among these are:
- Governor Susana Martinez of New Mexico
- Senator Bob Corker of Tennessee, who would have brought the valuable foreign policy experience that Trump lacks and desperately needs.
- Senator Marco Rubio of Florida – perhaps he just tired of being called “Little Marco”
- Governor Nikki Haley of South Carolina – might have helped his image with women
- Senator Joni Ernst of Iowa – also might have helped his image among women
- Governor John Kasich of Ohio, who would have helped in Ohio, very much a swing state, but now refuses to even endorse Trump.
- Senator John Thune of South Dakota, who said: “There are probably some good options for him. The question is: Are there people for whom he is a good option?”
John Weaver, who served as the campaign strategist for Kasich’s presidential bid: “I can’t imagine a truly credible person agreeing to be his running mate, because it would be the end of his or her political career.” My thoughts exactly! Of course, there is always Sarah Palin who bobs her head just like the little doggie in the back of the ’57 Chevy every time Trump speaks, and her political career was ended before it ever began, but she could only bring Trump down, and I imagine the GOP would be having night terrors is he even looked closely at her. So who does that leave? Well, it seems there are two leading candidates who are reasonably qualified and … ready for it … they say they want the job! Want to make any guesses before I spoil the surprise?
The two are New Jersey Governor Chris Christie and Former Speaker of the House Newt Gingrich. Although both could bring certain qualifications to the position that Trump himself is lacking, they also share in common that neither of them have much of a political career left at this point. Newt Gingrich resigned from Congress in 1999 and other than a failed presidential bid in 2012, has been outside of the political arena since. He does consulting, has written some books and produced one film, but he has not held a political office for 17 years. Gingrich, after such a long sojourn from the political arena, is unlikely to ever run successfully on his own, so perhaps that explains his willingness to ride Trump’s coattails into … disaster? Catastrophe? Oblivion? One must hope.
Chris Christie is currently Governor of New Jersey who’s term will end in 2018, and it seems unlikely that he will win another. I am neither a politician nor a political advisor, but for whatever my two-cents is worth, I would advise Mr. Christie to let go of Trump’s coattails, get off his knees and stop licking Trump’s boots, and spend the next two years doing everything in his power to re-establish his reputation among the citizens of New Jersey. In the wake of the “Bridgegate” scandal in 2013, though Christie was absolved of wrongdoing by the New Jersey District Attorney, his approval ratings began to drop and, at last count, his approval rating in his home state was 26%. Others have overcome much worse, but Christie may have already sold himself down the river by hooking his car to the Trump train. I believe that a year from now, it will be understood that affiliation with Trump was a death knell. And why, I ask myself, would Governor Christie even consider playing another round with the man who has made crude remarks about his weight, criticized his management of New Jersey, his willingness to work with, rather than against President Obama in the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy, and has called him a failed governor. Why the Sam Heck would any self-respecting individual be willing to work for a boss that said all those things before he was even hired? Oh wait … did I say “self-respecting”? Whatever was I thinking? Never mind, I just answered my own question. To his credit, but again, adding to the confusion, Mr. Christie has also been critical of Trump, saying his call to ban Muslims is “ridiculous” and mocking his former career as a television persona.
I gave some thought to briefly covering the political views of both Christie and Gingrich, and how well they align with Trump, but then I realized that it really does not matter. Trump’s own views change almost as often as he changes his underwear, so at some point he will agree with either or both, and at other times he will not. It is rather like looking through a kaleidoscope, ever-changing, ever-shifting, never static. Whoever is suicidal enough to join Trump at the convention next month will also need to be as a chameleon, blend in with da trumpeter.