What's A Veep Good For?

Josh Patashnik makes a good point:

...a vice-presidential nominee is somebody who (in addition, of course, to being potentially a heartbeat away from the presidency) will instantly become one of the four or five most recognizable figures in the party, and will likely be a frontrunner for the presidential nomination at some point in the future. It's somebody who, with any luck, will be popular enough to campaign with and raise money for candidates across the country for years to come. And yet the conversation hardly focuses on this at all. One of the most important things a party does is cultivate talent for the future, and selecting a vice presidential nominee is absolutely critical in that regard. It's like deciding what to do with the top pick in the NFL Draft. Are you going to wind up with a Peyton Manning, or a Tim Couch? I can give you three reasons why the GOP presidential field was so weak this year: Dick Cheney, Jack Kemp, Dan Quayle.

Ross thinks this reasoning "would militate against picking Bobby Jindal and in favor of picking Sarah Palin."