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Opening Arguments

Bad pair

Talk will soon turn to John McCain's choice for vice president, and it can be fun to speculate:

If McCain really wants to have it all—to refurbish his maverick image without having to flip-flop on the panderings that have tarnished it; to galvanize the attention of the press, the nation, and the world; to make a bold play for the center without seriously alienating “the base”—then he can avail himself of a highly interesting option: Condoleezza Rice.

To deal first with the obvious: Rice may be “only” the second woman and the second African-American to be Secretary of State, but she is indisputably the highest-ranking black female official ever to have served in any branch of the United States government.

Regular readers will know I wanted Rice to run for the presidential nomination, but I'm not sure she would be a good pairing with McCain. She meets some of the qualities he needs -- younger than him, more conservative. But, having stupidly said, "I don't know anything about the economy," McCain desperately needs somebody who can speak to that issue. With Rice, there would be an all foreign-policy ticket.