Sunday, July 29, 2012

Cage Match: Cheney v. Palin

Former Vice President Dick Cheney told ABC News that picking Sarah Palin as the vice presidential candidate in 2008 was a mistake.

Dick Cheney has some advice for Mitt Romney on choosing a running mate: Don’t pick another Sarah Palin.

In his first interview since receiving a heart transplant in March, Cheney told ABC News, that John McCain’s decision to pick Palin as his running mate in 2008 was “a mistake” — one that it is important from Romney not to repeat.

It’s subject on which Cheney has some unique experience. He helped Presidents Gerald Ford and George W. Bush lead their vice presidential searches and, of course, served as vice president for eight years. He’s also privately offered some advice to both Romney and Beth Myers, who is leading Romney’s search for a runningmate, on the process.

Cheney would not comment on what he told Romney and Myers, but he was harsh in his assessment of McCain’s decision to pick Palin.

“That one,” Cheney said, “I don’t think was well handled.”

“The test to get on that small list has to be, ‘Is this person capable of being president of the United States?’”

Cheney believes Sarah Palin failed that test.

In the larger scope, this pits the two wings of the GOP wingnutosphere against each other: the Bushies vs. the Tea Partiers, and those are the elements that Mitt Romney has to please in his choice of running mate: someone who’s not going to scare off the independents, but someone who’s got enough cred with the birthers and baggers to keep them from going rogue. Good luck with that.

It will be interesting to see what the reaction to Cheney’s remark is from John McCain and Wasilla. I’m willing to bet that somehow they’re going to blame it on Barack Obama: if the Democrats hadn’t chosen that Ni-CLANG!, the McCain campaign wouldn’t have had to go with a game changer. Yeah, that’s the ticket.