A VP Running Mate for Joe Biden

Following is a letter I sent to  Vice President Biden related to my preferences for a Vice Presidential running mate. Whether or not you agree, I am at least of record with my feelings

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Dear Vice President Biden,

Enclosed please find a contribution to your presidential election campaign. At the same time I want to offer my opinion regarding your choice of a vice presidential running mate and other potential appointments.

While there are many good women candidates for Vice President, the current bet here in Ohio seems to be that you will chose Kamala Harris as your running mate. I think that would be a mistake. Ms Harris is likely qualified for consideration, but I think she brings “baggage” you don’t need. She comes across as militant and abrasive in public; that will turn off many independents and even some Republicans whose support you need to court. She would, however, make a dynamite Attorney General in my opinion.

Probably the most qualified woman to become President on day one would be Susan Rice. Her resume of experience should put her on any short list for Vice President. However, she would probably also be a polarizing figure because of the Benghazi debacle. Her professional style is also strong and direct. Those are intimidating qualities for lots of old white men voters. I would strongly support her nomination to be Secretary of State. I don’t think you could do better.

I think for political balance and support from liberal Democrats, you need to offer Elizabeth Warren an obvious position of power in your administration; she is probably too liberal for moderate elements of the Democratic Party to accept as Vice President, let alone independents and disgruntled Republicans. I suggest, though, she could be a powerhouse as Health and Human Services Secretary, or perhaps even better as a Strategic Presidential Advisor whose team is tasked with delivering plans for universal healthcare, mitigating economic inequality, garnering public support for such plans, and shepherding the associated legislation through Congress.

If it were my choice I would select Amy Klobuchar as your Vice Presidential running mate. She has a significant record of working across the aisle on critical legislation. When the Trump nightmare is over you are going to desperately need the partnership she could bring. She can help you (and Elizabeth Warren) deliver new legislation critical to infrastructure investment, climate change mitigation, economic inequality, as well as universal healthcare legislation. She is also from the Midwest where she could help you win over the electorate in some critical states in that part of the country. Finally, but especially, she could complement you in defining and bringing the country together around a common national vision and strategy.

This is a unique election season with social distancing required, unemployment exploding, tens of thousands hospitalized and dying of the virus, and a President playing for reality show-like ratings. I encourage you to make your VP choice known soon, before the convention. I also would encourage you to publicly identify your nominees for critical cabinet positions and key advisors well before the election so voters can begin to see the kind of people a rational government will employ in vital positions.

Thank you,

Mark Mathys

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