Even If Donald Trump Wins, Nobody Wants To Be His Vice President
Nothing has given more keen insight into the Republican presidential frontrunner's severe lack of self-awareness than when Donald Trump named politicians he'd consider for Vice President during an interview with USA Today on Monday. I'm sure we've all had night terrors about the VP candidates a commander-in-Trump could potentially select, but even my most creative fanfiction couldn't predict the names he dropped. That's because they're all people Trump's trounced in the primary race so far, and they all high-key publicly hate his guts.
After hearing his first-draft picks — Sen. Marco Rubio, Gov. John Kasich, and Gov. Scott Walker — it's hard not to think of this as the grown-up political equivalent of trying and failing to make eye contact with a friend to "confirm" a partnership in high school. In true Trump fashion, he sort of acknowledged that they might not love him for what he's said about each of them and the chaos he's unleashed on their party. Per USA Today:
Yes. I like Marco Rubio. Yeah. I could ... There are people I have in mind in terms of vice president. I just haven’t told anybody names ... I do like Marco. I do like (John) Kasich. … I like (Scott) Walker actually in a lot of ways. I hit him very hard. ... But I’ve always liked him. There are people I like, but I don’t think they like me because I have hit them hard.
Surprisingly, there haven't been many warm and cuddly messages of gratitude from any of those parties just yet. So far, all three of his establishment picks have politely or not-so-politely declined to be connected to The Donald, pulling a classic Homer-Simpson-into-the-hedges move:
Sensing a disturbance in the force — and that someone was finally! talking about him again — Walker told the Wisconsin State Journal that he laughed when he heard Trump floated him as a possible VP and called the it "breathtaking," considering all the sh*t-talking (okay, my words, not Walker's) that had gone down.
Kasich (who, yes, is still in the race) had a quick and concise answer to Trump tossing his name around as possible running mate. "Zero chance," he told interviewers on CBS's This Morning, doubling down on his refusal even if it was the best chance for the party. (He said that, if anything, he'd finish out his term as Governor and become a host on the morning show. Yikes.)
Rubio, whose final stand against Trump included pot shots at the size of his hands (among other things), wasn't as colorful with his soundbite. But he did confirm, along with a bitter non-endorsement endorsement of Ted Cruz, that he was “not going to be the vice president."
Often in elections — especially presidential ones — politicians are willing to move on from race rivalry and unite. Joe Biden was formerly Barack Obama's rival for the 2008 Democratic nomination. George H.W. Bush challenged Ronald Reagan for the 1980 Republican nomination before serving as his VP for two terms. Those are just a handful of examples. But with someone like Trump, it's not looking like his rivals are willing to forgive and forget.