Americans Elect Ticket: Boren-Snowe? Snowe-Boren?

Jonathan Chait notes Olympia Snowe’s reference to a “vital need for the political center in order for our democracy to flourish” and “unique opportunities to build support for that change from outside the United States Senate” in yesterday’s retirement announcement.

Additionally, he adds, “it may not be coincidental that David Boren, the former Democratic senator from Oklahoma and oil industry lickspittle, came out for Americans Elect today. The group is set up so that its presidential and vice-presidential candidates need to come from opposing parties.”

The problem with this scenario is that, while Boren and Snowe fit the more-or-less centrist profile Americans Elect is looking for, neither of them have the name recognition or stature to be plausible presidential contenders. My guess is that they’ll court former governors and other executives, likely without much Washington baggage. And, if they do go for a former Senator, it’ll be someone like Chuck Hagel, someone with a relatively short tenure in Congress.

The only way they go with something like a Boren-Snowe ticket is if no name brand politician decides it’s worth casting his lot with them. (Which, so far, has indeed been the case.) In which case, it’ll be a complete boondoogle.

FILED UNDER: 2012 Election, Democracy, US Politics, , , ,
James Joyner
About James Joyner
James Joyner is Professor and Department Head of Security Studies at Marine Corps University's Command and Staff College. He's a former Army officer and Desert Storm veteran. Views expressed here are his own. Follow James on Twitter @DrJJoyner.


  1. Neil Hudelson says:

    I feel this is the one time Tsar Nicholas’s tired schtick would be appropriate.

    “Americans Elect? They’re still around?”

  2. Franklin says:

    @Neil Hudelson: Wouldn’t it be more like, “Who’s Olympia Snowe? Should I know of this person Chuck Hagel?”

  3. Gromitt Gunn says:

    Hollywood can have their Brangelina and their TomKat – I’ll take Snoren!

    (Any resemblence between “Snoren” and a sleep aid is purely coincidental.)

  4. WR says:

    @Franklin: Or “What’s the United States Senate? I’ve never heard of it.”

  5. Tsar Nicholas says:

    Jonathan Chait??

    In any event, in a two-party system it’s pretty tough to have more than two parties.

  6. mattb says:

    God, I love a well done running joke.