The AP’s need to send out news stories before events happen is odd, but often enlightening. For instance, their basis for concluding that Obama clinched the Democratic nomination:
The AP tally was based on public commitments from delegates as well as more than a dozen private commitments. It also included a minimum number of delegates Obama was guaranteed even if he lost the final two primaries in South Dakota and Montana later in the day.
Which no one seems to think will happen. So, at last, our long national nightmare is over. The primary is done. Hillary Clinton will eventually acknowledge that, after which she and presumtive-nominee Barack Obama will form some sort of Voltron-like supercandidate, who will battle McCainbots in space. It’ll be sweet.
Chances are, however, Hillary won’t be the VP nominee. She’s said too many bad things about Obama, and all of them would be dredged up endlessly if she were in the number 2 spot. I suspect that the VP candidate will be a governor, probably midwestern or southwestern. Sebelius, Strickland, Richardson, or Napolitano, if I had to name names. I don’t think they’d pull Claire McCaskill out of the Senate, since we can’t spare her Senate vote. Same for Jim Webb (though he, at least, would be replaced by a Democrat). Edwards wouldn’t be a bad choice, since he’s got name recognition, reaches out to the south, and has a message that meshes nicely with Obama’s. I don’t know that he’d want to go through that again (but would probably be willing if asked).
I think the fear of Clinton-backers balking if Hillary isn’t in the ticket are overblown. McCain offers them nothing. There will be a period of anger, but in the end they’ll vote for someone who won’t bomb, bomb, bomb Iran, who will work for universal healthcare, for sane economic and environmental policy, and who will strengthen American labor and our status on the international stage. Will naming a non-Clinton woman to be VP (Sebelius?) make them bitter? Not if the nominee can do the job and get us a Democratic president.
That’s my hope, at least. We’ll know shortly.