My Recommendation for Biden’s VP Pick: Karen Bass

Monday, August 10, 2020

I hear that a statement has been signed by 100 African-American men telling Joe Biden that if he does not select an African-American woman to be his running mate, he will lose.

I agree.

If a woman with the qualifications of Hillary Clinton or Elizabeth Warren or Amy Klobuchar cannot be elected president at this point, then this country should at least do the right thing and elect a woman vice-president in 2020. And given the number of African-American women who are qualified to hold that post right now, that woman should be African-American. Of the four who are most prominent on that list, I would select the top three as being Val Demings, Karen Bass, and Susan Rice. While certainly Kamala Harris is more qualified than Dan Quayle to be vice-president, she does not bring the particular strengths that the three I named would bring to the ticket.

I am going to cut to the chase. Biden should choose Karen Bass, and the main reason is that the VP is the presiding officer of the Senate (and the tie-breaking vote). If the Democrats take the Senate, or if it ends in a 50-50 split, you want someone in that spot who knows how legislation gets done, and who has an extraordinary sense of political ambidexterity. Because of her long experience as a legislator and as a member of the House of Representatives, Bass will be able — as President pro tem of the Senate — to work with Pelosi to craft legislation that Biden will not hesitate to sign.

Yes, signed, sealed, and delivered. Let’s hear it for Karen Bass!

I hear rumors, by the way, that she has spoken at socialist forums. In case people have forgotten, a lot of individuals who voted for Sanders in the primaries are needing reassurance that their issues matter in this campaign.

Sanders, by the way, should he have won, would no doubt have chosen an African-American woman as his running mate.


Susan Rice or Val Demings would be very fine choices, too. Demings brings electoral value to the ticket, in terms of coming from Florida. Rice would be able to be for Biden, what Biden was for Obama: a foreign policy representative able to log hundreds of thousands of miles of global travel in the rebuilding of international alliances. Granted, I am always suspicious of the corporate Neo-imperalisms (plural, deliberately) that mark the Clinton-Obama administrations, but such is the embroiling nature of governments at this point that contretemps must be vigilantly addressed to prevent catastrophe from catching us off-guard.

As for 2024, don’t be surprised if Tammy Duckworth makes a run for it.