The other Bayh

August 13, 2008 has new odds out, and it’s Evan Bayh on top:

It’s Evan Bayh who will be selected Vice Presidential running mate to Barack Obama, not Hillary Clinton. So say the folks at who released updated Veepstakes odds on Tuesday. In fact, is so confident that Even Bayh will be selected as Obama’s VP that they have made him the 7/5 odds favorite (paying $7 for every $5 bet) and these are the shortest odds offered thus far for either Democratic or Republican Vice Presidential running mate.

But John Nichols, associate editor of The Capital Times of Madison, Wisc., thinks  Obama is looking at the wrong Bayh:

The current Democratic senator from Indiana is Birch Evans Bayh III. He’s known as “Evan.” He’s the wrong Bayh. A forgettable centrist, he voted to authorize George Bush to go to war with Iraq; backed the Bush administration on civil liberties, surveillance and torture issues; and voted for Bush-promoted free-trade pacts that have damaged the interests of workers, farmers, communities and the environment in the U.S. and abroad. He has worked for the better part of two decades to steer his party to the right as a leader of the “Republican-lite” Democratic Leadership Council.

[. . .]

Birch Evans Bayh II — the current senator’s father — served from 1963 to 1981 as the hardest working and most effective member of the Senate Judiciary Committee during that contentious era. The elder Bayh was never satisfied to debate the issues of the day — although he did so brilliantly, especially when he was opposing the Vietnam War and urging passage of civil rights legislation. He worked, often with success, to achieve structural changes that were designed to make the American experiment more functional and democratic.

[. . .]

Not since the founders has one American official done so much to define the nation as Birch Bayh.

And he is still an able advocate for reform — something Obama could use in a running mate and America could use in a vice president.

Evan’s not that moderate, though to someone in Madison he probably seems like a rightwing nutjob. But Nichols is right that Evan is to the right of Birch. Almost anybody would be, except, well, Obama.


3 Responses to “The other Bayh”

  1. Harl Delos Says:

    In the first six years of the Dubya administration, the federal payroll grew 21%. Total government spending has increased 72%.

    Wouldn’t that put Dubya to the left of Birch?

  2. Harl Delos Says:

    (As a clarification, the total government spending has increased 72% under Dubya, not just during the first six years. I can’t find figures for the current payroll, which is why I talk about the first six years.)

  3. Leo Morris Says:

    There’s no left or right on government spending anymore. There are just big spenders and bigger spenders.

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