Meadville Tribune

Breaking News

CNHI News Service Originals

July 6, 2012

Five myths about choosing a vice president

(Continued)

— 4. A bold running mate choice can energize an otherwise moribund campaign.

This seemed to happen when McCain chose Palin, which electrified the Republican base, but McCain still lost decisively, and Palin's miscues and combative nature as a self-described "mama grizzly" may have negated any sizzle she gave the ticket.

Presidential candidates do not want to be upstaged by their running mates. They think the election is about them — and it is, as surveys consistently show. History reinforces the polling; selections such as Spiro Agnew and Dan Quayle received heavy media criticism, but each was on the winning side.

But sometimes when the odds are long, a presidential nominee believes he can boost his chances with an exciting vice presidential choice. That was part of Mondale's thinking in 1984 when he selected Geraldine Ferraro, a congresswoman from New York, to be the first female vice presidential nominee for a major party. But this was after the National Organization for Women demanded that Mondale select a woman, muting the impact of his choice. Rather than a pioneering leader, Mondale seemed simply to be captive to another special interest. He lost 49 states to Ronald Reagan.

Polls show that the 2012 race should be close, but Romney is running far behind among Hispanic voters, the nation's fastest-growing demographic. He could turn to Sen. Marco Rubio of Florida or Nevada Gov. Brian Sandoval to try to change that, but obvious pandering is poor politics — and inexperience on the national stage could cause problems.

5. A nominee's selection of a running mate reveals how he would govern.

Choosing a running mate is more about politics than governance.

As recently as 1920, when convention delegates ignored Warren Harding's choice of a running mate and selected Calvin Coolidge instead, presidential nominees had very little to say about who their running mate would be. But in recent decades, presidential nominees have become increasingly engaged in the vetting and selection process because none of them want a repeat of the debacle of 1972, when George McGovern had to drop Thomas Eagleton from the ticket after revelations that Eagleton had undergone electroshock therapy.

Text Only
CNHI News Service Originals
  • car-dashboard-gps.jpg Do cars have too many distracting gadgets?

    New cars are a gadget freak's dream; sophisticated navigation systems, Internet connectivity for mobile devices, systems to monitor your driving habits and a system that automatically summons help.

    August 3, 2012 1 Photo

  • Five myths about choosing a vice president

    Every presidential election cycle, once a party's nominee becomes clear, we focus on the veepstakes. Who will Mitt Romney choose? Will he play it safe with a traditional pick, such as Walter Mondale in 1976 or Jack Kemp in 1996? Or take a chance, as John McCain did with Sarah Palin in 2008? Either way, there is no evidence that a vice presidential nominee plays a great part in voters' decisions. But that doesn't stop us from overhyping the selection process.

    July 6, 2012

  • gift-card-2.jpg Gift card givers, beware: 6 tips to protect your purchase

    Many shoppers looking for a simple, easy present for friends and family this holiday season will turn to gift cards, letting the recipient do the shopping at their favorite store or restaurant. But the Better Business Bureau says consumer complaints about gift cards are on the rise, and buyers need to beware of potential pitfalls.

    December 14, 2011 1 Photo

  • vacancy-sign.jpg Stay scared: 10 most haunted hotels in America An overnight stay at a haunted hotel is a nightmare come true for many thrill-seeking tourists, and travel website TripAdvisor has named the top 10 places where you can scare up a good vacation.

    October 25, 2011

  • met092211amazonwarehouse.jpg E-commerce raises question of sales tax fairness

    A growing chorus of bricks-and-mortar small businesses are protesting what they see as tax law inequities driving them to the brink by requiring they collect and remit sales taxes while their electronic counterparts prosper through tax-free goods and services.

    October 24, 2011 4 Photos 2 Stories 1 Video 1 Link

  • met092211toddsmith.jpg Conflicted politics deter sales tax reform

    Lawmakers face political challenges in closing a legal loophole that allows online retailers to avoid paying sales taxes, as they weigh an issue of fairness against aversion to raising taxes.

    October 24, 2011 3 Photos 4 Stories 1 Video

  • Hugo Eight must-see films to close out 2011

    It's that time of the year, when all the films that are either designed to draw in big holiday bucks or win big 2012 awards get released. And those in love with cinema have dozens of options at the theater.

    October 14, 2011 1 Photo

  • Red_Leaf_BH.jpg SLIDESHOW: Fall colors on display across the U.S. The change in seasons brings a vivid display of fall foliage. Check out this gallery of photos of autumn colors from across the United States.

    October 14, 2011

  • organic-produce.jpg Organic: Is it worth it?

    “Organic” has long been one of those buzzwords floating around health- and food-conscious communities. The fact is, though, not a lot of studies actually confirm that people who eat organic food are more healthy than those who don’t.
    SLIDESHOW: The 'dirty dozen' of fruits and veggies

    September 23, 2011 1 Photo 1 Slideshow

  • Jane-Lynch-Emmys.jpg Who will win Emmys? See most-nominated TV shows Some epic HBO dramas along with a few popular comedy staples lead the way in nominations for the 63rd annual Prime time Emmy Awards, which air Sunday night.

    September 16, 2011 1 Photo

Business Marquee
AP Video
Kerry: Humanitarian Cease-fire Efforts Continue Raw: Corruption Trial Begins for Former Va Gov. The Carbon Trap: US Exports Global Warming UN Security Council Calls for Gaza Cease-fire Traditional African Dishes Teach Healthy Eating 13 Struck by Lightning on Calif. Beach Baseball Hall of Famers Inducted Israel, Hamas Trade Fire Despite Truce in Gaza Italy's Nibali Set to Win First Tour De France Raw: Shipwrecked Concordia Completes Last Voyage Raw: Sea Turtle Hatchlings Emerge From Nest Raw: Massive Dust Storm Covers Phoenix 12-hour Cease-fire in Gaza Fighting Begins Raw: Bolivian Dancers Attempt to Break Record Raw: Israel, Palestine Supporters Rally in US Raw: Air Algerie Flight 5017 Wreckage Virginia Governor Tours Tornado Aftermath Judge Faces Heat Over Offer to Help Migrant Kids Kangaroo Goes Missing in Oklahoma More M17 Bodies Return, Sanctions on Russia Grow
Hyperlocal Search
Premier Guide
Find a business

Walking Fingers
Maps, Menus, Store hours, Coupons, and more...
Premier Guide
Stocks