For the last week, we’ve been discussing the qualifications of many of the women whose names have been brought up as possible running mates for Joe Biden. We’ve discussed failed Georgia gubernatorial candidate Stacey Abrams, Michigan Governor Gretchen Whitmer, and several others, each with their own qualifications for the job, and each with their own reasons for why they’d be terrible choices.
But if I was asked which possibility I as a conservative am most worried about, my answer might surprise you. The potential vice-presidential candidate I fear most is one we’ve yet to discuss—and by “fear,” I mean one who would add the most to the Democrat ticket and make it more difficult for President Trump’s reelection efforts.
That person is largely unknown nationally, but she actually has a lot to offer as Biden’s VP. Her name is Congresswoman Val Demings from Florida. Some of you may remember her from President Trump’s Senate impeachment trial. She was one of seven House managers chosen by Speaker Nancy Pelosi to argue for Trump’s removal. Other than that, she has largely been unknown to the national audience.
However, putting my analyst hat on and putting my conservative bias aside, I must say that she would add the most to the Biden campaign. I hope that no one in the Biden camp reads this because I want him to choose somebody awful like Kamala Harris or Elizabeth Warren. (Shh, don’t share this with your Dem friends).
Congresswoman Demings checks all the boxes: she is an African American Woman, she is from the key battleground state of Florida, and most importantly, she isn’t a crazy Leftist.
She also comes from a long career in law enforcement. For 27 years, she worked in the Orlando Police Department and spent the last four years of her tenure as Police Chief, the first black female police chief in the history of the city of Orlando.
She can speak with authority when it comes to crime and punishment, specifically on questions of racial crimes, which have become a hot topic again following the shooting death of Ahmaud Arbery in Georgia.
Personally, Demings is far more likable and easier to stomach than Senator Kamala Harris or Elizabeth Warren. Issues of general likability played a major role in ending both of their presidential campaigns. Stacey Abrams comes across as whiny by not conceding that she lost a fair election Kemp in the Georgia Gubernatorial election in 2018. Demings, by comparison, appears to be more of a straight-shooter and is more personally accountable than Abrams and her fellow VP contenders.
Val Demings has a very inspiring American Dream story. Writing for the Boston Globe, Jeff Jacoby outlined her harsh upbringing, writing “Her personal background is deeply stirring. Demings, the youngest of seven children, is a Black woman who was born in the Jim Crow South and grew up poor in a rural district of Duval County, Florida. Her father worked in an orange grove and mowed lawns; her mother was a housemaid. Demings was raised in a two-bedroom house that lacked an indoor bathroom, and she didn’t attend an integrated school until the sixth grade. She began working when she was 14, washing dishes in a nursing home. She was the first in her family to graduate from college, where she earned a degree in criminology. She joined the Orlando Police Department in 1983 and spent 27 years as a cop — the last four of them as Orlando’s first female chief of police. Demings’ life story is an American dream come true.”
However, Demings does have a partisan side to her. Following Joe Biden’s blatantly racist remarks in which he told minority voters “you ain’t black” if you vote for Trump, Demings tried to downplay Biden’s remarks by changing the conversation to attacking Trump’s supposed bad record on race.
The Washington Times reported, “‘The vice-president shouldn’t have said it,’ Demings told CNN’s State of the Union on Sunday.
‘But I really think the gall and the nerve of President Trump to try to use this in his campaign, he who has since day one done everything in his power, supported by his enablers, to divide this country, particularly along racial lines …
Look, let’s talk about race because we definitely need to, we see it in housing, we see it in voting rights, we see it in healthcare, we see it in education. Mr. President, let’s do have a serious conversation about race in America and how about working for all people that you are supposed to represent, not just the privileged few.’”
Demings has been reportedly been vetted by the Biden team, and that puts her on a shortlist of candidates that Biden will choose from. Obviously, I am hardly ever going to agree politically with Val Demings, but objectively speaking, she would be the best person for Biden to choose.
The question is: Will he make that choice?