How to Screw Up a Vice-Presidential Pick

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Joe Biden’s choice for vice president is arguably the biggest decision of his campaign—and it could go very, very wrong. And no one knows more about failed veep picks than Steve Schmidt and Philippe Reines, who worked on the McCain/Palin and Clinton/Kaine campaigns.

In Episode 12 of The New Abnormal, The Daily Beast’s podcast for a world gone off the rails, Schmidt and Reines tell Molly Jong-Fast and Rick Wilson about what went south with Hillary Clinton’s VP approach, and how Biden can avoid the same fate.

“It’s not a matter of who you want to go to the movies with. It’s a matter of being able to do it on day one,” says Reines. “In a perfect world, he would pick Bernie Sanders,” he adds. “I mean that would be a horrible world, but in that world he would pick Bernie to consolidate the party and money.”

On this planet, Reines says, Elizabeth Warren is the best person to help with that consolidation. (Reines says also he wanted Warren on the Clinton ticket in 2016, and that the Massachusetts senator was a finalist for the role.) Schmidt thinks Kamala Harris better rounds out the Biden ticket.

Schmidt and Reines also talk about Stacey Abrams and why choosing her would ultimately do more harm than good: “This is not a time to gamble.”

Asked about Trump’s re-election chances, neither of them think things look too good right now. 

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“I think right now, Trump is losing,” says Schmidt. Reines chimes in: “For those who wanted to make things better, this is a failed experiment and amateur hour is over. Forty million Americans are out of a job. How the hell does a president get re-elected?” 

Plus! Our dynamic duo asks the important questions, like: What exactly is wrong with Mark Zuckerberg? And will the caregivers at the White House assisted-living facility try to give Donnie the pudding he likes?

Listen to The New Abnormal on Apple Podcasts, Spotify and Stitcher.

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