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Who is Joe Biden's best pick as Vice President? Show more Show less
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In the run up to the US presidential election, all eyes are on who Democratic presumptive nominee, Joe Biden, will pick as his second in command. This is a crucial decision in his campaign and has the potential to make or break his victory in the upcoming election.

Val Demings Show more Show less

Demings would help Biden win Florida, a swing state. Her personal experience as a poor Black woman in the South would bring African-American voters of the region to vote for Biden. As a former police chief, Demings would bring great insight into racism and police reform.
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Demings can help win Florida

The Argument

Picking Demings as VP offers Biden a strategic advantage in Florida, an important swing state which could make or break his election.[1] Florida has historically been the key to electoral victory, as no presidential candidate in the last 20 years has won without winning Florida’s 29 electoral votes.[2] As a swing state, Florida is always a close race, and therefore every single vote counts. Demings comes from the Interstate 4 Corridor, a “swing state’s swing region” which will play a key role in the election.[1] Buddy Dyer, the mayor of Orlando who first appointed Demings as the city’s police chief in 2007, notes that “To win in Florida, you’ve got to win the I-4 Corridor. Having Val on the ticket would give Biden a lot better chance in Florida. Not that he can’t win Florida without her, but I think Val would certainly energise the entire I-4 Corridor, would energise the entire African-American community to turn out, if nothing more than to turn out for her.”[1] “Demings has a positive reputation [] in Florida” notes Sharon Austin, professor of political science at the University of Florida.[2] She won her congressional seat by double digits in 2016 and was unopposed when reelected in 2018.[2] Demings would be a valuable asset to Biden if he picks her as his running mate, and she could prove to be a crucial factor in winning Florida. Most of Biden’s other VP contenders come from blue states that he can count on, but taking Florida could be the deciding factor in the election.

Counter arguments

Demings was chief of a police department which has been marked for its record of violence and police brutality which Demings often defended as police chief.[1][3] This makes her a risky pick given the current Black Lives Matter climate, as there is the fear that choosing a police officer as a running mate would send the wrong message.[3] Demings' history with the police department will be a problem if Biden chooses her as his running mate, Demings also lacks political experience, something Biden is eager to have in a running mate in order to make their administration as efficient and effective as possible – Beiden has explained that he needs someone who knows what they’re doing from day one. Another drawback is that Demings and Biden barely know each other well. Biden has made it clear that he is looking for someone he knows he can work well with.[1]

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Premises

Rejecting the premises

References

  1. https://www.politico.com/news/2020/05/17/val-demings-joe-biden-vice-president-shortlist-262066
  2. https://www.cnbc.com/2020/06/25/how-rep-val-demings-could-help-joe-biden-meet-the-moment-as-his-vp-pick.html
  3. https://www.nytimes.com/article/val-demings-biden-vp.html

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This page was last edited on Thursday, 13 Aug 2020 at 00:29 UTC

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