Republicans would be wise to ignore the advice of Dick Morris, who sometimes appears to be a sleeper agent for the opposition. When he’s wrong about something — such as the Condi-Hillary matchup he wrote a book about — he is SPECTACULARLY wrong. He tries to make the case against Mitt Romney as a VP choice, and this part makes some degree of sense to me. But the alternatives he presents are completely unacceptable to conservatives — including Mike Huckabee. Morris thinks that he understands what conservatives want, when in fact he is absolutely clueless about that. He continues to hype Colin Powell, Condi Rice, and Joe Lieberman as VP choices, presumably because this demonstrates McCain’s bipartisanship or something. This would only serve to remind conservatives of something we see as a McCain weakness. Yeah…that’s a winner of an idea.
All of these options would be more of a mistake than choosing Mitt Romney. He says that choosing Powell or Rice would give the choice a “WOW” factor. “WOW” factors are just as overrated as most of Morris’ advice. If McCain really cares about what conservatives want (and there isn’t much indication that he does), then he needs to look outside of Morris’ preferred circle of VP options, and disregard most of the media’s shortlist as well.
Who’s my pick? If we rule out Palin and Jindal (and we have to, since they aren’t credible as the next in line to the Presidency just yet), I have to echo the suggestion of some other conservative blogs and throw former Congresscritter and FNC guest host John Kasich into the mix. If we must pick someone from Ohio, why not someone most conservatives already know from TV? He’s a solid fiscal conservative and an effective defender of our worldview, and I would love to see him mix it up with Obama’s VP pick. That debate would be very watchable. Picking a relative unknown like Rob Portman doesn’t deliver Ohio for McCain. Not that picking Kasich would necessarily accomplish that, but it certainly would have more of Morris’ famed “WOW” factor for conservatives than a Portman pick would.
I’m pessimistic about McCain’s inclination to pick someone who thrills conservatives, but I can settle for his choice — as long as he ignores Dick Morris’ picks and doesn’t pick his BFF Lindsey Graham. Nobody really knows what McCain will do with his VP pick, so the best approach right now is to ignore most of the speculation, and wait to see what happens.