Special to USAfrica magazine [Houston] • USAfricaonline.com
By Chido Nwangwu
As the U.S presidential campaigns enter the first week of August 2020, a very important decision will be made by the Democratic Party candidate, Joe Biden.
It will be his choice of a vice presidential running mate. It is familiar territory for him having served as vice president to the first African-American president of the United States, Barack Obama.
The position of VP has been described in various ways. One of my favorite quotes is the one by John Nance Garner which describes it as “A spare tire on the automobile of government.”
In terms of options, Biden has promised Americans that he Will pick a woman. Biden should not only pick a woman; he should pick a very capable woman.
it is important to note that the November 3 presidential election will be impacted by the inevitable mix of the high death tally from coronavirus with harsh business climate. I will separate the trees from the forest, by noting that the election, in the context of health security and the devastating economic impact, will become a national security election.
Consequently, my first pick for Vice President is the 55-years-old, ready-to-lead African-American woman who served from 2013 to 2017 during the presidency of Barack Obama as the 24th United States National Security Adviser.and the 27th ambassador to the United Nations, from 2009 to 2013.
She is Susan Elizabeth Rice, born November 17, 1964. She is, in my view, an excellent and familiar and trusted deputy for Joe Biden. She’s a realistic and battle tested international security specialist fit for these complex and especially dangerous environments.
I recall that the first time I met Ambassador Rice was In March 1998; I was in South Africa on assignment as Publisher of USAfricaonline.com reporting then President Bill Clinton’s launch of the African Growth and Opportunity Act. Plus, Clinton’s historic, joint tour with the late, great Nelson Mandela of the jail cell and prison yard of the Robben Island where Mandela had been jailed by the racist apartheid rulers.
She was, during that trip, the Assistant Secretary of States for African Affairs.
Those events are analyzed, contextually, in my forthcoming November 2020 book, MLK, Mandela & Achebe: Power, Leadership and Identity. 3GreatMen.com
At the end of the day, the top of the ticket determines the electoral advantages and outcomes.
Rarely, if ever, do Americans insist that the vice presidential candidates are determinative and fundamental factors regarding how they vote. Therefore, presidential candidates and their strategists/handlers mostly follow the number one Rule inside campaigns and politics: it’s a competitive game of addition, not subtraction.
The choice of a vice presidential candidate could be elevated as a signal to influential social, faith, ideological, racial, regional or economic segments of the society. That is, a move targeting a potent demographic. However, for an election so close, statistically, a complicated, “wrong pick” could be a drag on Biden.
Dr. Chido Nwangwu, the Founder of USAfrica multimedia networks and public policy organization since 1992 in Houston, established the first African-owned, U.S-based newspaper published on the Internet USAfricaonline.com. He served as adviser on Africa business to the ex-Mayor of Houston, Dr. Lee P. Brown. Chido is the first continental African to be admitted to the influential organization, 100 Black Men of America. He is the author of the November 2020 book, MLK, Mandela & Achebe: Power, Leadership and Identity. He is a graduate of the FBI’s citizens academy on International security. In July 2017, he was issued a U.S. Congressional Recognition for USAfrica’s 25 years. Chido, the recipient of several journalism and public policy awards, has been profiled by the CNN International for his pioneering works on multimedia/news/public policy projects for Africans and Americans.
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