* The national media had slowly begun to take interest in US Sen. Tammy Duckworth as a possible vice presidential choice for Joe Biden. Duckworth was then put on the vetted list and a recent New York Times profile elevated her profile even further…
Dan Milberg is a retired Army helicopter pilot who voted for Donald J. Trump in 2016, and does not wish to vote for him again. But before he can consider pulling the lever for former Vice President Joseph R. Biden Jr., he needs to know who his running mate will be.
“It might be someone too progressive,” said Mr. Milberg, who lives in Robertsville, Mo.
The one person who would put him at ease, Mr. Milberg said, is the pilot whose seemingly lifeless body he lifted from a helicopter in 2004, her legs blown off by a rocket-propelled grenade not far from Baghdad: Senator Tammy Duckworth of Illinois.
It is not so much the event that indelibly marked both of their lives and earned Ms. Duckworth a purple heart that draws him to her, Mr. Milberg said. Rather, he continued, she “is moderate enough that I think she can be appealing.”
* The idea of appealing to the center took hold with NYT columnist Frank Bruni…
But mightn’t Warren also give moderate voters pause? What about her age? She’s 71. Biden’s 77. Can the party of change and modernity, whose last two presidents were both under 50 when first elected, go with an all-septuagenarian ticket?
Governing partners don’t matter if you don’t get to govern. The certain catastrophe of four more years of Trump demands that Biden choose his running mate with November at the front, the back, the top and the bottom of his mind.
Harris also ably prosecutes the case against Trump. But many progressives have issues with her, and the idea that she’d drive high turnout among black voters isn’t supported by her failed bid for the Democratic nomination. She lacked support across the board, including among African-Americans. And in a recent national poll conducted by The Times and Siena College, more than four in five voters — including three in four black voters — said that race shouldn’t be a factor in Biden’s vice-presidential pick.
Duckworth is neither progressive idol nor progressive enemy. That partly reflects a low policy profile that’s among her flaws as a running mate but could actually work to her advantage, making her difficult to pigeonhole and open to interpretation. Trump-weary voters can read into her what they want. And in recent congressional elections, Democrats have had success among swing voters with candidates who are veterans.
* Fox News profile…
She’s received high marks on legislative effectiveness.
As a freshman senator, Duckworth passed three proposed bills into law, earning her the rank of “Exceeds Expectations” as a freshman senator from the Center for Effective Lawmaking, alongside Republican John Kennedy, for the 115th Congress, 2017-2018.
* From WaPo’s top eleven…
10. Tammy Duckworth: The senator from Illinois, Iraq War veteran and double-amputee made her case as Biden’s running mate in a New York Times story Thursday: “I can push back against Trump in a way others can’t,” Duckworth said. She added: “I can say, ‘Listen, that American flag is the same flag that would drape my father’s coffin, my coffin, my husband’s coffin and my brother’s.’ It has draped them for generations. No one respects that flag more than I have. But I will respect the right to protest it, too.” (Previous ranking: 9)
An emerging consensus is that Biden should select a woman of color. University of Virginia Professor Larry Sabato’s Crystal Ball ranks all five of Biden’s top vice presidential choices as women of color, with Harris, Demings, and Illinois Sen. Tammy Duckworth leading the way.
* Sabato’s advantages for Duckworth…
•Inspiring life story as double amputee
•Military background could give her crossover appeal
•Succession in the Senate not an issue
•Has kept a low profile in the Senate
•Biden won’t need help carrying IL
…Adding… I was talking with a pal who brought up a potential issue. Duckworth was a Blagojevich appointee (Veterans Affairs). Blagojevich now describes himself as a Trump supporter. Could be problems there.
*** UPDATE *** VoteVets is backing her…
* Sen. Tammy Duckworth Demands Senate Hearing Into Report Russia Secretly Offered Bounties To Afghan Militants For Killing U.S. Troops