The American public is now being bombarded by the presidential candidates for the year 2000 election.
Each candidate is proudly and loudly extolling his personal fine points, while slyly and cleverly downplaying the opposition. "We the People" are in for 11 more months of bragging and carping. The hopeful politicians will be everywhere.
Commercials on television and the radio will flood the airwaves. Personal appearances will clog our highways. The newspapers will grow fat with advertisements telling us whom to vote for as president of the United States in the Millennial Year 2000.
They never mention the vice-presidency!
Who will be our future vice president? I think it is harder to be a "Veep" than a "Pres." What are the duties of the second-in-command? Do they include:
1) Putting the president's programs and policies into effect?
2) Supporting the president blindly, even if you do not entirely agree with him?
3) Being a target for the opposition to focus upon and deflecting harsh blows aimed at the president?
4) Softening the opposition?
5) Filling in during funerals and performing perfunctory assignments?
The president acts and the vice president reacts.
Many of our vice presidents have suffered through the job and eventually made it to the White House. Let me name a few:
Andrew Jackson when Lincoln was killed.
Teddy Roosevelt, when McKinley was assassinated.
Harry Truman, when Roosevelt died in office.
Lyndon Jonson after Kennedy was murdered.
Richard Nixon became president after serving eight years as vice president under Eisenhower.
Gerald Ford, after Nixon resigned.
George Bush was elected after being Reagan's Veep.
Al Gore is anxious to add his name to this list.
The vice president's job definitely has advancement possibilities. However, John Nance Garner, a Texan and vice president under Franklin Delano Roosevelt, once stated, "The vice presidency isn't worth a bucket of warm spit." Was he right?
Some presidents use their VPs well and keep them in the loop and informed of important decisions. Others keep the VP at arm's-length and in the dark.
Who will our next vice president be?
The suspense is killing me!