May 15, 2016
Donald Trump Wants Crossover Appeal But Reported VP Shortlist Is All Far Right

The new buzzwords for the Donald Trump campaign are "crossover support." Considering most polls still have Donald Trump losing some pretty important states when it comes to taking the presidency, the campaign is starting to try and convince others, and perhaps themselves, that there is crossover support for the candidate. That would mean Donald Trump could pull in enough Democratic votes to shake the race up a little. Of course, for Donald Trump to make his campaign that much more attractive to Democrats or liberal-leaning undecideds, the easiest move would be to select at least a moderate running mate.

If Donald Trump is indeed attempting to court the moderates in the voting block, then it doesn't appear he's going to be going after them with his vice presidential pick, if Ben Carson can be believed. Carson recently talked to the Washington Post and told the newspaper who Donald Trump currently has on his list of VP candidates. That list might get the Republican base up and energized, but it's a list of people who have mostly gone out of their way to attack the very groups of voters Donald Trump and his campaign have admitted they need to win over in November.

Included on the list of people Donald Trump might name as VP are a who's who of people who just finished running for president or were VP candidates once before. Carson says the list includes New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, Texas Sen. Ted Cruz, Ohio Gov. John Kasich, Florida Sen. Marco Rubio, and former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin. Among those names, only two people could be thought of as attractive to moderates. Chris Christie is the governor of a traditionally "blue" state, though his approval ratings have taken a sharp decline since he kicked off his campaign for President.

There are plenty of people in Christie's home state who also have a real problem with Donald Trump and their governor being one of the first high-profile Republicans to publicly endorse him. John Kasich is the only other person on the list of people who could be a running mate to Donald Trump that would qualify as remotely moderate. Kasich has mostly earned the reputation of being moderate because he's shared a stage with people like Ted Cruz and Donald Trump, who have both been firebrands since the campaign season.

While Ben Carson has been a vocal supporter of Donald Trump since the neurosurgeon left the race, he's said he has no interest in being the real estate mogul's vice presidential candidate. During the interview with the Washington Post, Carson said he knew Trump didn't need any help causing controversy, meaning Carson is capable of more self-reflection than many might have guessed. As Yahoo News pointed out, there are plenty of other names on the list Donald Trump is reportedly considering that are going to draw plenty of controversy on their own as well. While Carson said she's on the list, just last week Sarah Palin seemed to be indicating she also didn't want to be a "burden" for Donald Trump, as Palin told Jake Tapper on his CNN program, State of the Union.
"I am such a realist that I realize there are a whole lot of people out there who would say, 'Anybody but Palin.' I wouldn't want to be a burden on the ticket, and I realize in many, many eyes, I would be that burden."
At the same time, the former Alaska governor didn't flat out say she wouldn't run if she were asked. The question that should be requested of the Trump campaign is how any of these names will get that crossover appeal they claim to want. On the other hand, Donald Trump has pushed all the right buttons so far this campaign season, so it's hard to second guess.

[Photo by Mark Lyons/Getty Images]