5 Women Who Would Make Awesome Running Mates for Hillary Clinton
As the clock ticks closer to November's election (yes, we promise, it’s coming) new questions emerge about how exactly things will shake out in the next five-plus months. Are there any skeletons left in either candidates’ closet? What level of intensity will this battle of the sexes reach? And who will stand beside Trump and Clinton as their running mates?
Some reports from Trump's camp seem to indicate he has already chosen a VP, although it's unclear if he has even notified the person in question. The merry-go-round is also in full swing for Hillary Clinton, with The New York Times writing that her search is really about chemistry, and that "a running mate whose company Mrs. Clinton genuinely enjoys could help present a joyful picture to voters, after a primary season that was sometimes dreary."
There's usually only female name spoken with any enthusiasm: Massachusetts Senator Elizabeth Warren. There’s good reason Warren is included — she's a progressive icon, and her forthright manner has earned her accolades among those who are tired of politics as usual. Warren is a liberal star. But she isn’t the only progressive woman who is igniting change within the party, and yet it’s Sherrod Brown, Cory Booker, Julian Castro, and a slew of other XY chromosomes dominating the coverage. These lists — and news that Warren will speak at the Democratic convention on Monday — make it more and more clear that while the country (or half of it, at least) is on board with the idea of a female president, an all-female ticket is an idea too radical to consider.
We’ve had 44 pairs of dudes running things for the past 240 years. Is it really so revolutionary for two women to hold the highest offices at once? I’d hope not, but then again, this is a political system currently supporting a reality show host gone rogue, so perhaps it’s to be be expected.
So in an effort to knock some equality back into this circus, here are five women, besides Elizabeth Warren, who have the experience and the tenacity to join Hillary Clinton on her path to win the White House.
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Photo Credit: Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call
New York Senator Kirsten Gillibrand Pros: Among the most well-known female politicians in the nation, Gillibrand has established herself a champion of military causes, assisting in the repeal of Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell, and arguing (unsuccessfully) that military commanders should not hear sexual assault cases from within their ranks. A Democratic governor would choose her successor to the Senate, so no seats would be in jeopardy for the party. At just 49 but with nearly a decade in office she could perhaps establish herself as the Hillary Clinton of the next generation. Cons: Gillibrand's fiscally conservative positions don’t exactly line up with Clinton’s, and two New Yorkers don’t make for the diverse ticket most candidates need. Photo Credit: Brent N. Clarke/FilmMagic
Wisconsin Senator Tammy Baldwin Pros: As the first openly gay senator in U.S. history, Baldwin cemented her status as an icon before she even set foot in office. She’s also one of the Senate’s most liberal members—Baldwin fiercely supports universal healthcare, equal pay, and LGBTQ rights — which could free Hillary Clinton to lean more toward the center in an attempt to grasp more moderate voters. Plus, Baldwin endorsed Hillary for president wayyyy back in 2013, so it’s clear she’s an adamant supporter. Cons: Baldwin doesn’t yet enjoy much of the name recognition of some other women on this list. Photo Credit: Astrid Riecken/Getty Images
Former Texas State Senator Wendy Davis Pros: With her sneaker-clad filibuster heard round the country, Davis solidified her cred as a feminist icon and political savant. As an incredibly popular Texan, she may not have quite enough clout to pull the state left (although that idea has been roundly debated) in this election, but with the state's growing Latino population, a shift in 2020 isn’t entirely impossible. It’s totally possible to imagine Davis running freely with the Woman Card schtick that Team Hillary has been — and nailing it. Cons: After her loss of the Texas governor's race in 2014, Davis has been out of office for almost two years, an eternity in American politics. Photo Credit: Amy E. Price/Getty Images for SXSW
California Attorney General Kamala Harris Pros: Harris is part of a fresh wave of diverse faces bringing some energy back to the Democratic Party. With an impressive career as a district attorney behind her, Harris’s deep knowledge of the American justice system would free Clinton up to tackle questions of foreign relations. Her longstanding commitment to gun control would also be an asset in an election year that’s been plagued with the question of how America will handle its epidemic of mass killings. Cons: Harris is shoo-in for the retiring Barbara Boxer’s seat as a the junior senator from California, so it’s unclear if she’d pass up the opportunity to be a lawmaker to sit in Hillary’s shadow. And she brings very little electoral college upheaval to table as a representative of an already-liberal state. Photo Credit: Genaro Molina/Los Angeles Times via Getty Images
First Lady Michelle Obama Pros: She’s Michelle Obama: feminist leader, brilliant attorney, woman of grace. Cons: To be serious here, there is zero chance of Obama hopping on board for another round of political bumper cars. She’s made it clear that she won’t be pursuing any higher office — numerous times. But just imagining these two road-tripping across the country by campaign bus fills us with glee. Photo Credit: Burak Akbulut/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images