Richardson for Barack's VP
Given that Hillary is clearly not a leading contender to be Barack's choice for VP, my top preference would be Bill Richardson. Back in the early days of the primary season, he was my preference to be the Democratic presidential nominee. He has a lot of experience in government and by far the best foreign relations experience of any candidate now on the field, including a stint as UN ambassador and experience negotiating with other countries. Since Barack is weak in foreign relations, Richardson would give his ticket instant credibility on that front. He also has a lot of experience on the energy front, not least being a former Secretary of Energy. Being a state governor gives him a depth of experience that helps balance Barack's lack of executive experience. He also helps pull in the Hispanic vote. He seems like a win-win proposition to me. He's not charismatic, but Barack has that covered, so I think his hard-core energy and international experience trumps just about everything else.
As an American citizen, I feel that I could sleep better at night knowing that Bill Richardson was either actively tackling problems or at a minimum actively giving Barack great advice.
There is some expectation that Barack will announce his VP choice this week. I do not have any inside information, but I look forward to Bill Richardson's name being the one pulled out of the hat.
Bill is already scheduled to speak at the convention on Wednesday evening, the VP night, but I do not know if that automatically means he won't be the VP choice. I suspect that it does mean that he is out of the running, but I am not so sure. Evan Bayh, Joe Biden, and Jay Rockefeller are all also scheduled to speak on Wednesday on the same topic of "Securing America's Future" (national security.) I am not so sure that they are all automatically out of the running due to being scheduled as well.
The bottom line is that if Barack chooses Bill Richardson, I could actually get excited about his campaign. I honestly do not know who else he could choose that would get me excited (besides, Hillary, of course.)
I am also thinking that McCain will pick former Pennsylvania governor Tom Ridge as his VP.