Last night during the Democratic primary debate, Vice President Joe Biden said that he would be picking a woman for VP under his ticket and while I rolled my eyes, I did see other noted feminists getting excited about this news. Without being harsh on my fellow feminist-facing people, I just feel like it needs to be stated: the standard should be higher than just … a woman.
“If I’m elected president, my Cabinet, my administration will look like the country, and I commit that I will, in fact, appoint a, pick a woman to be vice president,” Joe Biden said during the CNN debate. “There are a number of women who are qualified to be president tomorrow. I would pick a woman to be my vice president.” As The Washington Post points out, this isn’t exactly breaking news: “We’ve known for some time that Biden was leaning toward a woman. He has said he’d prefer a running mate ‘of color and/or a different gender.’ His other criteria: Someone he can trust.”
Biden has said that he plans on picking someone who agreed with him politically and with that in mind, we should be emotionally prepared for Vice President Amy Klobuchar. That is not something we should be excited about, outside of just getting Trump out of office. With what is going on in our current climate and medical field it has exposed that take every bit of progress as spoonfuls of sugar to help the capitalism go down isn’t working. Which is why we shouldn’t see the choice of a female Biden for VP as a progressive move.
Sarah Palin was a Vice Presidential nominée. Would you have been comfortable having her be president if anything happened to McCain? No, that’s why she didn’t win and arguably damaged the ticket.
I very much understand the importance of having a female leader. For the United States to have gone this long without one is shameful, especially when we have had highly qualified female candidates. Still, we shouldn’t treat all female politicians the same; we should judge them based on their politics. Otherwise, you end up positioning someone like Margaret Thatcher as a “feminist” icon.
Plus, let us not forget that Biden did say, once upon a time, that he was open to having a Republican running mate (though the chances of him doing so are practically nil). “There is some really decent Republicans that are out there still, but here’s the problem right now, of the well-known ones, they’ve got to step up,” he said back in December when asked the question by a woman at a town hall. There are prominent female Republicans who Biden could put on his ticket. Would that be a yes queen moment for y’all?
Elizabeth Warren has also been floated as a potential vice presidental pick for Biden and while that would gut me on a level, especially since Warren got into politics to fight Biden’s policies—she would be a smart pick from Biden. But I don’t want Warren to have to settle for being a running mate when she is qualified for being President and I don’t think it is fair for either potential nominee to benefit from her wisdom.
With both Democratic noms being in their late 70s, whomever they pick for Vice President will matter. But if we claim to be progressives we should want to use our identity politics to anoint people who have consistently voted for our values.
(via CNN, image: Alex Wong/Getty Images)
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