Sunday, June 22, 2008

A thought experiment

One of the reasons that Gov. Pawlenty is often touted as a strong vice-presidential pick for John McCain is that his popularity would somehow spill over into the neighboring states of Iowa and Wisconsin, potentially helping McCain in those places as well.

Do you believe that? Here's a little thought experiment.

Quick - name the governors of Wisconsin and Iowa. Here's a hint - they are pictured above.

The guy on the left is Chet Culver. If you didn't know any better, you'd probably assume he's the governor of Wisconsin, since that is the state that is responsible for bringing Culver's Restaurants to the world. (Mmmm.... butterburgers.) But Chet Culver is not the governor of Wisconsin. He's the governor of Iowa. The bald dude is Jim Doyle and he's the governor of Wisconsin. Both of these gentlemen are Democrats and both were highly instrumental in helping Senator Barack Obama win elections in their respective states.

Do you think that if Sen. Obama decided to pick either one of these guys to be his Veep (and there's almost no chance of it happening, by the way), that it would make your average Minnesotan more likely to vote for Obama? If you answered not a chance, give yourself a gold star.

Tim Pawlenty may have a number of things that recommend him to John McCain as a potential runningmate. But he won't do a thing to win over voters in Wisconsin or Iowa for John McCain.


Mike said...

But you see, Minnesota "matters." Don't you know that all Iowans and Wisconsinites wish they could be as suave, debonair, sophisticated, intelligent, and politically astute as Minnesotans are? Of course Wisconsin and Iowa will swoon over McCain if Pawlenty is his choice for VP. All we want to be is Minnesotan.

Penigma said...

I agree that Pawlenty won't help in either state. For that matter, I don't think Pawlenty would delivery Minnesota, there is simply too much anger at this administration - and the Veep position has really ceased mattering that much - beyond that, ideologically, these two are seen as not that similar but Pawlenty is to the right of McCain - so it's not as if Pawlenty appeals to a section of voters who otherwise would have not voted for McCain

Chad The Elder said...

You will notice that it's usually national pundits who espouse that silly theory. No one in Iowa or Wisconsin will give a rip whether T-Paw is on the ticket or not. And he won't help turn Minnesota either. We're going for Obama by at least eight points.

Mark Heuring said...


Don't know what will happen, but you may be right.


Yep, I had noticed that. Folks on the proper side of the Hudson always demonstrate their own provincialism most clearly when they pretend to tell us about ourselves. I have heard a few random Minnesotans who buy into the theory, though.