The Urgent Salience of Biden’s Veep Pick

There is a real feeling among most Democrats I’ve talked to of waiting for the other shoe to drop. Just the other day, my dear Mother commented to me that Biden needs to stop messing around and pick a running mate already.

Whatever form it takes in the SARS-CoV-2 world in which we live, the Democratic Convention is planned for the third week of August. So we’ll know soon, at least by then. He has indicated he will announce by Aug. 1, so it will be soon indeed. I think many people want to know so they can start to see the campaign coalesce, and to have some relief that Biden has picked someone who will energize his campaign.

As it stands, the running mate pick is perhaps one of the most important decisions a candidate makes. I tend to be rather superficial in figuring on my favorites. If the candidates don’t look nice together, or if they don’t exude some kind of chemistry, they aren’t going to win voters over. I think in this regard, the Obama-Biden match was sublime. Hillary Clinton’s choice in 2016? Not so much.

You don’t even remember that person’s name, do you?


John Kerry picked John Edwards, and they looked like they belonged on a wedding cake your local true believer bakery would refuse to bake. And let’s not even start talking about a certain former governor of Alaska.

But this morning I thought of another factor that’s going to make Biden’s pick particularly important: She is likely to be the person who heads up Biden’s coronavirus efforts.

As feckless as it is, Trump’s coronavirus team is already structured via the Eisenhower. Chains of communication, data, work already completed, phone trees, email chains, all the little crap that makes things go in Washington, they are already going through the Vice-President. If I were the new Preznit, and I knew that I had to hit the ground running on this issue, I would turn to my Vice-Preznit and say “congratulations, you’re our new Sars Czar.”

Sars Czar, you like that? I just made it up. Nobody has ever heard of that before.

So when you’re mulling your own favorites, mark my word on this one: Factor in that Biden’s Vice President is likely to be the person in charge of the new federal efforts on the pandemic. Who do you want in that role? That’s your gal.

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