Ross on Huckabee as a McCain veep:
A McCain-Huckabee ticket, then, would make sense only if McCain were running a very different sort of campaign--if he were in the mood to blow up the GOP in the name of "creative destruction," as his neo-conservative admirers famously urged him to do back in 2000, rather than betting that he can hold the fracturing, feuding Reagan coalition together long enough to achieve one last victory. Picking Huckabee would represent a gamble that the future of the party lies with some odd amalgam of right-wing heterodoxies; that many of the movement-conservative institutions that served the GOP during its rise to power need to be attacked, rather than reformed; and that the best way to push the Republican Party beyond its current impasse would be to run a ramshackle, ideologically confusing, shoot-from-the-hip campaign and hope it turned out OK in the end.
Matt's related thoughts:
McCain needs to choose between playing it safe and piloting himself to landing at 47 percent of the vote, or doing some outside-the-box that risks blowing up his coalition and leaving him with only 40 percent but also provides an outside chance that the gamble will pay off. The rational choice is for McCain to play to win. But his problem is that his campaign is going to be run by professional political operatives. If these guys run a respectable campaign and lose at 47, nobody's going to blame them -- McCain was facing an ultra-charismatic opponent in an adverse political climate. But if they run an outside-the-box campaign and wind up losing in a landslide, then their reputations might be badly hurt.
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