Yesterday, Team Trump announced that this coming Friday the presumptive Republican nominee will announce his choice for Vice President. Rumors have been swirling for months over who he will pick. Traditionally, the ideology surrounding a VP is”do no harm”. Joe Biden = no harm, Sarah Palin = harm. A presidential hopeful should be a like-able, somewhat boring, and nonthreatening counterpart. However, when you’re running with Trump, a man who is arguably unlikable, extremely unusual, and all around politically threatening, who do you pick?
Geographical demographics are taken into consideration when a swing state is needed. Trump is still desperately trying to gain the right winged, conservative vote. He is not a man of the cloth, he has insulted POW’s and spoke of committing war crimes, and with Ted Cruz still denouncing him because his panties are still in a twist over Trump insulting his wife, he hasn’t truly captured the conservative mindset. For the rest of Republicans, the main thing Trump has going for him is that he isn’t Hillary Clinton.
For Trump, his approach this coming Friday will more than likely be to make up for what he lacks: a strong Republican backing, knowledge of the legislative process, and a reasonably likable personality.
The Trump team has yet to do anything predictable, but for now we can expect it will more than likely be one of the following:
New Jersey Governor Chris Christie
Chris Christie, poor guy. Just in general, poor guy.
Christie involved himself in politics at the age of fifteen when he volunteered for a gubernatorial campaign in 1962. After earning a law degree from Seton Hall University, he joined a law firm which he became a partner of in ’93. His first elected position position was county freeholder of Morris County, and in 2002 he campaigned for President Bush. Those connections led to his appointment as Attorney General, where he served between 2002-2008 (Which he continuously brought up time and time again during the debates). He then moved on to become Governor of New Jersey in 2010 and then again in 2014.
And we all know how the story goes. Christie gets lap-band surgery, plays the hero card during Hurricane Sandy, shuts down a bridge, and then runs for President against Trump. There isn’t that much that Christie brings to the table that Trump lacks. Christie continuously insulted Trump during the debates, then went on to endorse him shortly after he dropped out. They both have the brazen North East attitude, and a general lack of respect for other people. Christie could potentially bring in the moderate Republican base, and Christie has a type of “good enough” jena se qua the Republican party could deal with. Even though he is topping most predictable VP pick brackets, I would find it surprising if Trump goes for Christie, they’re too similar aka unlikable.
Newt Gingrich was a member of the U.S. House representing Georgia’s 6th Congressional district between 1979 and 1999. He served as the highest ranking member of the House as the 50th Speaker of the U.S. between 1995-1999. Most notably, he enacted welfare reform, passed a capital gains tax cut and passed the first balanced budget since 1969. Gingrich left in 1999, because like his friend Trump, he hates taxes. He resigned from speakership after being reprimanded for the use of tax-exempt organization for political purposes and then provided false information to House Ethics Committee. However, since leaving the House, Newt has stayed extremely involved and active in public policy. Most notably, running for president during the 2012 election. And of course….Gingrich is an adviser to the Canadian mining company, Barrick Gold. Newt is just crazy enough to get along with Trump, has extreme political clout, and just mutually suspended his relationship with Fox News to avoid any possible conflict.
Gingrich was also born Luthern, spent most of his time as a Southern Baptist, and then converted to Roman Catholicism in 2009. So he has a hold on religion. Not only that, but he’s been married three times, with the first two ending in affairs and divorces and is known for his huge ego. So he has the “real politician” side covered.
His last name also has “rich” in it. If you think Donald Trump hasn’t taken that into consideration, you’re wrong. Gingrich has been bowing to Trump all over social media, where apparently this entire election is truly taking place, feeding Trumps need for validation.
Confidently speaking, Gingrich seems like the most likely pick.
Indiana Governor Mike Pence
Mike Pence took office as the 50th Governor of Indiana in 2013. He began his career after graduating law school in 1986 as an attorney in private practice. He unsuccessfully ran for Congress twice and shortly began his career in talk radio in the early 90’s becoming the host of The Mike Pence Show, and then hosted a weekend political talk show out of Indianapolis. It wasn’t until 2000 that Pence was elected to the U.S. House of Representatives, serving the 2nd Congressional District. He was re-elected comfortably four times and by 2008 was listed as one of the top ten legislators and by 2012, became the Governor of Indiana.
Pence hates LGBT rights, HATES them. He believes gay marriage and homosexuality will lead to a societal collapse due to the deterioration of marriage and children. He has advocated for a constitutional same-sex marriage ban, and believes that homosexual soldiers weaken the unit and should not be able to serve in the military.
He blamed his staff for deleting pro-gay comments on his Facebook, which is good because Trump does that as well. Pence is a pretty safe choice to gain the rightest of the right, especially if Obama does not get the chance to fill the late Supreme Court Justice Scalia’s seat. However, Trump doesn’t seem to have any issue with LGBT rights, he did grow up in New York City and all.
Pence has a bright future in politics with a growing ultra-conservative party. Gingrich and Christie have met their political end in terms of needing to be re-elected and Pence could potentially damage his future by tying himself to Trump.
This is an extremely unlikely candidate. But Scott Brown is so thirsty, it seemed wrong to not include him. Scott Brown first served at a local level in Massachusetts before serving in the Massachusetts House of Representatives (’98-’04) and then the State Senate (’04-’10). He entered into the US Senate after the death of Ted Kennedy left a vacancy. which ended when Elizabeth Warren garnered 54% of the vote when he ran for re-election. He served 35 years in the Army National Guard, retiring as a colonel in 2014. He has a pretty modest record while in office, however, he was acknowledged as an expert on veteran issues.
In 2014, he announced he would run for U.S. Senator from New Hampshire, deeming his vacation home in Rye, New Hampshire of two decades reason enough to do so. Seen as a somewhat desperate move to stay relevant by Massachusetts resident’s, he was reasonably well received in New Hampshire voters with Brown only loosing to Jean Shaheen by 3%. He is still in the political thicket, hosting Trump at an event in Portsmouth, NH back in January where Brown introduced Trump as “the next president to the United States” and Donald Trump acknowledging Brown could be his VP pick. Brown then more recently was spotted at a Trump campaign event in Boston.
Brown is an extremely moderate Democrat. He believes same-sex marriage is a settled issue and broke away from his party stance and rejected the military ideology of “don’t ask, don’t tell”. Moreover, he is self-described as pro-choice and was the first GOP Senator to support a federal ban on assault weapons.
The only thing Scott Brown can bring to a Trump presidency is an understanding of the legislative process, military support, charisma, and an actual sense of how to run a campaign. Even though Brown was a male model and his daughter was on American Idol, I just don’t see the benefit of a moderate Republican with two back to back lost elections.
However, it would not be surprising if Brown used Trump to become relevant again in the hopes of re-election or appointment should Trump win.
Arkansas Congressman Tom Cotton
Tom Cotton has the ability to be the underdog that
no one expected many news outlets have pointed to as a potential candidate. He is currently the youngest U.S. Senator at 39 years old and has served in the Senate only since January of 2015 after he beat two-term Democrat Mark Pryor in a landslide victory of 56% to 39% in general elections. He grew up on his family farm in Arkansas, and after high school moved to Massachusetts to attend Harvard University, which he graduated from in 3 years. He then went on to Claremont Graduate University, ultimately dropping out to enroll at Harvard Law where he received his Law degree in 2002.
More impressively, in 2005 Cotton joined active duty in the US Army where he attended U.S. Army Airborne School as well as Ranger School and Air Assault School. By 2006, he was deployed to Baghdad as part of Operation Iraqi Freedom and in 2008, Afghanistan. Cotton has been a heavy criticizer of the Obama administration handling of foreign affairs, mostly on Obama’s Iran nuclear deal, going as far as drafting a letter to “The Leaders of the Islamic Republic of Iran” warning that the terms of the nuclear deal may not stick depending on who the next president it.
That’s a bold strategy Cotton, lets see if it pays off.
Cotton would give Trump the foreign affair knowledge he lacks, knowledge of the legislative process he lacks, the youth he lacks, and a strong republican base, which he also lacks. Cotton is already scheduled to speak at the Republican National Convention next week and has gained a lot of attention these past few weeks.
Cotton however, lacks political experience, the main issue facing Trump. Cotton also has an extremely bright future ahead of him, even more so than Pence. But, like Pence, tying himself to Trump at this point in his career could be a devastating move.
And there you have it folks. If you are a betting man, you should bet on Gingrich. However, Donald Trump may end up choosing himself or Omarosa. Who the hell knows anymore anyways?