Friday, May 30, 2003

A Dean/Graham ticket? : Dean, Graham Make Strange Bedfellows

Marc Ambinder speculates today that Governor Dean may be planning ahead and flirting with adding Graham to his ticket. While talk about possible VP candidates is very early, here are some noteworthy items about this article:

  • Gov. Dean is identified (finally!) as a progressive candidate. Later in the article, Ambinder even points out that Dean has often sparred with the liberal factions of the party.
  • Gov. Dean is identified as a top tier candidate (this is increasingly the case, as other press coverage recently is putting him into the same “tier 1” category).
  • The governor-as-executive angle has legs.


  1. While it is probably way too early to be thinking about who should be the vice presidential candidate, I have long supported the idea of a Dean/Graham ticket. There are issues where I disagree with both candidates, but I believe that such a ticket would help forge a Democratic and Electable wing of the Democratic party.

    It is never to early to dream about the perfect cabinet. Right now, I would love to see
    President: Dean
    Vice President: Graham
    Secretary of State (or perhaps ambassador to the U.N.): Braun
    Attorney General: Edwards

    Sharpton should get some sort of civil rights position, or communications position. (I love his one line zingers). Gephardt, Lieberman, and Kerry are probably best where they are, and Kucinich? Hmm... I'm not sure.

  2. graham's too hawkish for my tastes: he voted against authorizing the war with iraq, but he did it because he felt that the resolution was too *weak*... graham would bring foreign policy/national defense experience to a dean ticket, and he could be an asset in the must-win state of florida, but i really hope dean goes in a different direction with his choice of running mate

  3. yes, I disagree with Graham on some issues...but remember, winning the general is all about the broadest appeal. I called this as a possibility about three months ago, and I think it would be the most potent Democratic ticket.

  4. I wouldn't put Braun as SecState...she's decent, but there is some baggage there. Perhaps UN Ambassador.

    For SecDef: Wesley Clark?

    Attorney General: Eliot Spitzer (the Anti-Ashcroft), though Edwards certainly has the name.

    SecTreas: Ok, I don't have any good suggestions here.

    SecState: Jimmy Carter's too old...heck, Clinton's looking for work...;)

    That's all I got now. I can't even throw out ideas for SecHHS or Interior or anything like that right now.

  5. The nice thing about Graham as VP
    is that it brings his intelligence
    strengths and his Florida ties to
    the ticket, while sidelining his
    hardline foreign policy. A VP has
    as much power as the President wants
    him to have, and Graham's old enough
    that he wouldn't run in 2012, leaving
    the field open.

  6. I don't think that a Dean/Graham ticket would have the broad-reaching appeal necessary to win the election. Sure, Graham would score a lot of points in Florida . . . but, this election is bigger than Florida, and who's to say that it would all come down to Florida in the end? History seldom repeats itself exactly. Graham has no charisma, no draw. There's a reason his presidential bid is floundering. I think that, should Dean get the nomination, he should nominate Wesley Clark as his vice-presidential candidate. They have very similar views on foreign policy, plus, Clark's status as a general pretty much negates any chance of him being perceived as weak on defense. In addition, Clark is a southerner, from Arkansas. If the Democrats won all the states that Gore won in '00 plus one southern state, the White House would be theirs.