John McCain, Sarah Palin Both Right About the ‘Great Switcheroo’

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Biden and Clinton share a laugh. Photo: Brendan Smialowski/Getty Images

In the days following ChainsGate, a few prominent conservatives have readily offered President Obama the same political advice: Kick Joe Biden and his unhelpful metaphors to the curb and replace him with Hillary Clinton. That's right: The Great Switcheroo, the speculation that will never die, is back again.

Sarah Palin was the first Republican to make the suggestion on Tuesday:

"If that's not the nail in the coffin, really, the strategists there in the Obama campaign have got to look at a diplomatic way of replacing Joe Biden on the ticket with Hillary. And I don't want to throw out that suggestion and have them actually accept the suggestion because then an Obama-Hillary Clinton ticket would have a darn good chance of winning."

Her former partner in crime, John McCain, echoed the sentiment yesterday:

"I think he might be wise to do that, but it's not going to happen obviously, for a whole variety of reasons, including the fact that I'm not sure that if I was Hillary Clinton I'm not sure I'd want to be on that team. I think her ambitions, very frankly, are for 2016.

In what may be a first, we actually agree with both Palin and McCain. An Obama-Clinton ticket would have a "darn good chance of winning." And, even if Obama wanted to make that call to the bullpen — and we don't believe he has any intention to do so — Hillary Clinton almost certainly doesn't want to get in the game.

It's years away still, but for right now, every single poll of the 2016 Democratic presidential primary shows that it's Clinton's for the taking, if she's interested. After staying clear of politics for the past few years, she's now more beloved than she's ever been in her two decades in the national spotlight. Why should she sully herself in the muck of this increasingly dirty race? What could she possibly gain from becoming entangled in the politics of Obama's second term?

There's a lot of risk for her, and very little upside. Better for her to step down as secretary of State at the end of Obama's first term, pretend that she just wants to relax and live a private life — to read, or travel, or birdwatch, or whatever comparably mundane activities she professes to look forward to — and then grudgingly return to politics one last time, for America.