08 February 2007

Condi for President

So I was listening to some talking heads discussing Rudy Giuliani throwing his hat into the ring for Republican presidential candidate, and I was trying to remember the last time a presidential election had been this wide-open for both parties, and I realized: never, because there has almost always been either a Vice President waiting in the wings or an incumbent President for one party, so it's usually just wide-open for the opposition.

And why is it wide-open this time? Because Dick Cheney isn't now, and never really was, a serious contender for President. He's too... unlikeable, old, and after six years in this administration, tainted.

So I was wondering, since no one really likes Cheney anyway, what would happen if he resigned in the next year or so, and President Bush was able to select his successor? Wouldn't that more or less anoint that person as the front-runner Republican party candidate for 2008? I realize he (or she -- Condi for president, anyone?) would need to be confirmed by the majority-Democratic Congress, but would that really be that difficult? Is this something that can happen under our Constitution?

Just wondering. Anyone out there know the answer?


rodiii said...

When Spiro Agnew resigned, Nixon selected Jerry Ford as VP. I guess he was confirmed by Congress, but I can't remember. There was certainly no fuss made, perhaps because Agnew was such an embarrassment.

But I don't think that conferred frontrunner status on Ford. I think Ford was largely viewed as a good guy, a well-liked congressman who graciously gave up his seat for the country's benefit, but not presidential material, until Nixon resigned. Then, of course, everyone had to see him, and judge him, as presidential material, and he came up short. Vice presidents often run but seldom win, at least on their first try. Nixon lost, Humphrey lost, Mondale lost, Quayle didn't even get the nomination, Gore lost. Bush 41 won, but only in the face of a phenomenally inept Democratic campaign. I think the veepship is just not a stature-enhancing position.

rodiii said...

In fact!! It turns out (thanx Wikipedia) that the last serving VP to be elected presnit before Bush was... Martin Van Buren in 1836. Now that's a surprise.