One thing about winning the presidency: no matter how fabulous or dreadful the ensuing administration, no matter how much or little is accomplished, no matter whether it's for one term or two, even if nobody remembers anything else about the fellow's time in the White House, the name will be forever remembered?even if it's Millard Fillmore or Chester A. Arthur.
Vice presidents? Except for those who move on to the presidency, they fade fast from memory. Only vice presidential candidates whose tickets lose become more obscure. Sometimes, vice presidents are unknowns in their own era. When Rutherford B. Hayes was told that a certain William Wheeler had been nominated to be his running mate, Hayes asked, "Who is Wheeler?"
One of the guys whose image appears below had this to say about the job: ?When I was elected vice president of the United States, it was the worst thing that ever happened to me.? He was also noted for making another more vulgar comment, though that is the subject of some dispute. Can you name and pick him out of the veeper line-up below? How about the rest of them?
No fair Googling. Answers below. Once you learn their names, you may still not know who they are.
Blast from the Past. At Daily Kos on this date in 2008:
I've written before, and likely will write again, that the only endorsements that matter in a presidential race are mayors. Many (not all) have patronage machines that they can wield to move votes to their endorsed candidate.
I learned this the hard way after Dean was endorsed by the likes of Al Gore and other party luminaries to no discernible effect in 2004. Big non-machine endorsements matter lower on the ballot. But at the top, people will make up their own minds on who to support. Senators and congressmen have no machines, since they have no patronage to dole out. Mayors, on the other hand, can deliver thousands of jobs to loyal backers.
That's why Philly mayor Nutter and Gov. Rendell (an old-school machine politician) were able to limit Obama's gains in the Philly metro area to Clinton's big benefit. In fact, Clinton had at least 100 mayors working for her in the Keystone State.
The mayors were big for Clinton. Obama's endorsement by Sen. Bob Casey? Pretty much irrelevant.
Vice Presidents. Top Row: left to right: Daniel Tompkins (1817-1825 ); Garret Hobart (1897-1899); Dan Quayle (1989-1993). Bottom Row: John Nance Garner (1933-1941); Alben Barkley (1949-1953); Richard Mentor Johnson (1837-1841)
Happy Anniversary to the original Trojan Horse. Here, an Australian comedy show, The Chaser's War on Everything, finds out exactly where a Trojan Horse can be left overnight.
Open Thread below....
OK, two things: 1) I officially no longer care about the PA Attorney General?s race, since the voters of our beloved commonwealth continue to reward mediocrity every chance they can get in all manner of elective office, and 2) I don?t know how many other people besides me are aware of this, but Blogger recently completed an ?upgrade,? and it is a total disaster. I?m seriously considering resurrecting the Wordpress site and bailing on Blogger once and for all, for anyone who cares to know that.
Now, this tells us about Obama reaching out to college-age voters; Charles M. Blow of the New York Times recently had an interesting column about that...and lest anyone think Willard Mitt and the GOP actually care about younger voters, please keep the following clip in mind (featuring a rare moment of fortitude by Fluffyhead in response to more garbage from Moon Unit Bachmann)...
...and I hope readers of this site don?t find themselves asking this musical question.
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A commenter, monticarlo, asks, "Does anyone know if there are plans to organize the thousands of University students statewide who will be out of state June 5th to vote early/absentee vote in May before they leave town? This could amount to thousands of Dem votes."
Madison Student Vote Coalition has answers; pass it on. Click the graphic below to make it bigger.
Kazakhstan's Foreign Minister Yerzhan Kazykhanov claims the publicity from ?Borat: Cultural Learnings of America for Make Benefit Glorious Nation of Kazakhstan,? has caused visa applications to increase tenfold in the six years since its release.[...]
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TPM has a nifty interactive map here.
And all the official returns for all parties are here.
In addition to funky cats, the Russians apparently have quite interesting hamsters as well. (I still think I prefer these videos without the music added.)
Title: SheArtist: Gram Parsons
Another sad loss this week, as bassist Chris Ethridge succumbed to pancreatic cancer on Monday. Although he was best known for his bass paying with the Flying Burrito Brothers and Willie Nelson, Ethridge also co-wrote gems such as Hot Burrito #1 and tonight's selection. R.I.P.
Slim excitement on a pretty eventless primary election night. But we've got a winner in Delaware and his name is Mitt Romney. For reasons that are obscure to me, Newt chose Delaware as the place to make his last stand. Or lets be honest, his most[...]
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"The more Mitt Romney has immersed himself in politics, the more vigorously he has peddled the narrative?what Newt Gingrich has termed "pious baloney"?that politics was just something that the life-long businessman stumbled into, more or less in the manner of a fellow who strolls into his local diner for a cup of coffee in the middle of a stickup and is thereupon transformed, albeit reluctantly, into a civic hero. Romney's selective elucidation of his own biography seems of a piece with his fuzzy ideology. As one of his former senior advisers admits, "Mitt's flaw is authenticity. Someone who changes his mind can be effective as a business leader or running the Olympics. But when you change your mind on such core issues as abortion, then what? Where's the authenticity?"
Romney's story line has undergone a few crucial revisions. As recently as February, he told supporters in Nevada, "I never imagined I would one day run for president of the United States," but back in December 2007 he had a different recollection when I asked him when he first thought about taking up residency in the White House. "It was probably, oh, back when I was with Senator [Bob] Bennett of Utah after the Olympics, when I was governor a couple of years, around 2004," he replied. "He just said to me, 'Y'know, you don't have to decide if you want to be president. But you do have to decide if you want the option to become president.' [In a recent interview, Bennett clarified to me that he first put this in memo form.] And it's like, 'Wow. I'm a one-term governor from Massachusetts. You think I've got that kind of opportunity?'
But of course," Romney went on, "you know, did it pop into my mind at other times in my life? Of course. But not as a 'Hey, I've really got a shot at doing this,' but more 'This is a serious course for me.' "
So why did the boy who dreamed of designing cars or practicing medicine instead become the single most driven presidential aspirant of the twenty-first century? Mitt Romney's wife, Ann, gave away the answer to a reporter in 1999, a few years before anyone fully appreciated what it meant. "Politics," she explained, "is in Mitt's blood." Or as Mitt himself would write, "I had become my father's son."
I just posted parts of an article from GQ Magazine that focused on Mr. Romney. I am trying to learn as much as I can about him because my wingnut friends have convinced me that he could be my next president. Unfortunately I don't like what I have been seeing so far.
I don't mind that fact that he has never taken a drink. I don't mind his Ward Cleaver persona, or the way he talks down to everybody like we all work for him. What I do mind is that fact that he has no core or soul. I just can't get over the fact that there is not one authentic bone in the man's body. His unctuous used- car salesman style deliveries this campaign season have been hard to watch. And yes, for the most part, we expect politicians to be inauthentic. But even though we understand that most politicians are usually insincere, there is just so much speciousness a person can take.
"Mitt reacted to his double-digit defeat with the conviction that politics wasn't for him. "Under no circumstances" would he run again, he declared. Just two weeks later, however, he told a reporter that he might challenge the other Massachusetts senator, John Kerry, in 1996. "Today I say I will leave the door open," he said."
They don't call him Flipper for nothing.
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