2024 GOP Rivals Teaming Up on the Ticket? Don’t Bet on It

That and other historical lessons on the race for the VP nomination

KEY POINTS FROM THIS ARTICLE -- History suggests that whoever wins the Republican presidential nomination is unlikely to choose one of their rivals for the nomination as his or her running mate. -- This has happened on occasion in the recent past -- including Joe Biden selecting Kamala Harris as...

The Vice Presidential Debate: What to Watch for Tonight

Dear Readers: In advance of tonight's vice presidential debate between Mike Pence and Kamala Harris, we are pleased to feature a debate preview from our friend Joel Goldstein, one of the nation's leading experts on the vice presidency. Joel looks back on the history of vice presidential debates and points...

Putting the Harris Selection in Historical Context

KEY POINTS FROM THIS ARTICLE -- Joe Biden’s vice presidential search was the longest in modern history, and it involved an unusually large and diverse list of contenders. -- Yet Biden’s eventual choice was also conventional in that he selected a sitting senator -- common for modern Democrats -- and...

The Biden VP Calculus

The choice matters; more than one factor will go into it; and it's too soon to predict the pick

KEY POINTS FROM THIS ARTICLE -- As Joe Biden zeroes in on his VP options, there are some myths about the choice that are worth exploring. -- The pick does in fact matter, or at least it has historically, and whoever is chosen won’t be picked for just one reason,...

The Democratic Vice Presidential Derby: Look Beyond the 2020 Contenders

History suggests broad guidelines for the kinds of candidates who will be considered

KEY POINTS FROM THIS ARTICLE -- The history of vice presidential selection suggests some overarching trends that will guide the eventual Democratic nominee’s selection. -- One piece of history stands out: Presidential nominees often, though not always, opt for a running mate who was not a candidate for the nomination....

Don’t Sell Biden’s Vice Presidential Experience Short

Successful VP stint much more important in assessing his 2020 odds than his previous presidential misfires

  Editor’s Note: The Crystal Ball will be away for the University of Virginia’s spring break next week. We’ll return on Thursday, March 21. We’re pleased this week to welcome back to the Crystal Ball Joel Goldstein, perhaps the nation’s leading expert on the vice presidency. Joel challenges the notion...

The Running Mate Calculus

It's not surprising that Trump's process looks a lot less conventional than Clinton's

Now that the nominations of Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump appear inevitable, attention turns, as it always does at this time, to the vice presidential selections. This year presents the fifth time in 40 years that both parties will select new running mates. Although Trump’s recent victories have eliminated the...

So, do you actually want to be vice president?

The factors potential running mates should consider before taking the plunge

Although the presidential races in both parties have not been resolved, speculation has already begun regarding vice presidential nominees. Whereas John Kasich and Ted Cruz, like almost every other presidential candidate historically, dismiss any interest in the vice presidency, Ben Carson won’t rule out being Donald Trump’s vice president, Cruz’s...

Five factors that will define the running mates

Lessons from history on how the nominees will balance their tickets

“Where do vice presidential candidates come from?” If this year is like other leap years, that’s the question some precocious political strategists and presidential candidates will ask this spring. History reveals certain patterns, but it also suggests that the past is an imperfect guide. Even in relatively normal election years,...

The Democrats’ Mythical Third Term Obstacle

Dear Readers: We have long suggested that one factor in the GOP’s favor in the 2016 presidential sweepstakes is a party’s difficulty in winning a third consecutive White House term. But there is another way to look at the subject that does not make the third-term hurdle seem so daunting,...