Not Picked For VP, Could Whitmer Still Join A Biden White House?

WWJ News
August 11, 2020 - 6:09 pm
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(WWJ) Presumptive Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden has chosen his running mate, and Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer is out. 

California Sen. Kamala Harris is former Vice President Joe Biden's pick to serve in his previous role, should he be elected in November — after months of speculation that Whitmer may be the one.

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Whitmer even met with Biden in person this month, reinvigorating talk that she was on the short list.

WWJ Lansing Bureau Chief Tim Skubick says although Whitmer was not selected for the VP job, there are other possibilities. 

"I can guarantee you this: Now that the governor is off the list for Vice President — take this to the bank — her name will now come up for, what? A cabinet post if there is a Joe Biden/Kamala Harris administration," Skubick said. "And I would not be surprised if that wasn't discussed at that meeting in Delaware a couple of weekends ago between the presidential pick, Mr. Biden, and Governor Whitmer." 

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Skubick added: "(There is) no confirmation of that, but it's really in the cards."

While Biden had said he would choose a woman as his running mate, many expected he would pick a Black woman.

In fact, Democratic Party sources talking to the Associated Press say Whitmer, although flattered, wanted out of the running for VP, and recommended Biden pick a black woman. 

Skubick said there was quite a bit of blow-back in the African-American community when it appeared Whitmer was closing in on the job, which may have hurt her chances. 

"Not only here in Michigan and Detroit, but nationwide...It basically was quite a slap in the face," Skubick said.

"There were complaints about how she handled the Flint water crisis — remember that was not on her watch, it was on Rick Snyder's watch — but she's getting flack for it. She got some flack for the Detroit lawsuit regarding school kids, and she got flack for wanting to close down the Benton school system, Benton Harbor school system," Skubick said.

"So the governor's got some fences to mend. So not only does she not get VP, she's got a problem with African-American voters; at least some." 

The governor expressed her support for Harris and Biden in a tweet following Tuesday's announcement. 

Whitmer, who has been in the spotlight due to her handling of the COVID-19 pandemic, is scheduled to speak Monday at the virtual Democratic National Convention. Harris will speak on Wednesday.

Looking ahead, it's unclear which cabinet position, if any, for which Whitmer could be considered. There's been no indication thus far that she would be interested, and she has repeatedly said she has work to do in Michigan.