Now that there seems to be a relatively high degree of satisfaction amongst the Democrats and the media that Barack Obama is going to be the nominee – though we are constantly reminded that there is not a guarantee of anything – the discussions of whom shall be the vice presidential running mate of Obama and McCain can finally begin in earnest. Oh, joy.
These are always discussions that, like a great many in the talking head media, stroke the egos of journalists more than enlighten the public; naming possible veep nominees is a great way to show you know a whole lot of crap about party politics that the rest of us don’t have time for. Its a way to show you know every second-stringer and governor from fly-over country that matters, but none of it matters even as much as the discussions during the primaries, which wasn’t a lot either.
One trend that has proven somewhat interesting in the last week and a half has been the media’s setup for how they plan on covering the Clinton defeat. They seem to be relishing it.
One track of the discussion has been whether or not Hillary will be a “sore loser.” You hear that phrase quite a bit from a great many talking heads. Where the discussion previously turned on whether or not Clinton would go to the convention floor and yank the nomination at the last minute, now it’s just a case of how nasty she looks when she loses.
The other major track has been the “Democrats don’t suffer losers” discussion. Here, it is pointed out that while many Republicans have lost the nomination in one primary only to gain it back in the next, Democrats have never rerun a nomination. The implication is that Clinton will not get a second chance at the presidency in the likely event that she loses the nomination this time.
So if you haven’t noticed those two themes, look out for them and how they evolve over the next few weeks. Like the Jeremiah Wright story and the noticeable lack of a Pastor John Hagee story, it will be these themes that dominate how the media attempts to shape our opinions.