CA Dem Convention: Richardson and Dodd

Dodd sounds and looks solid, knowledgeable, and boring. Richardson seems unable to comprehend that his resume doesn’t automatically earn him the nomination. Both seem to be running for VP.

Dodd would be OK with me, though I don’t quite see what he adds to the ticket (maybe union backing if Obama is the nominee?). Richardson, not so much. He just doesn’t seem very smart, or very thoughtful. Having blundered last week by saying Whizzer White would be his model chief justice, a reporter asks him how he can reconcile that with his strong pro-choice position when White wrote the dissent in Roe v. Wade. Richardson says, “White was in the 60s. Wasn’t Roe v. Wade in the 80s?” Bzzzzzzzttt!!!

Richardson, though, has the funniest line of the convention, illustrating how far behind he is in the horserace. It seems he calls his 92-year-old mother every Sunday, and she’s getting forgetful. One day she says to him, “Son, are you still Governor?” He says yes. Ten minutes later, she says, “Son, are you still Governor.” “Yes, Mom, unless I’ve been impeached since the phone call started. In fact, I’m running for President.” She replies: “┬┐Presidente? ┬┐Presidente de que?”

Author: Mark Kleiman

Professor of Public Policy at the NYU Marron Institute for Urban Management and editor of the Journal of Drug Policy Analysis. Teaches about the methods of policy analysis about drug abuse control and crime control policy, working out the implications of two principles: that swift and certain sanctions don't have to be severe to be effective, and that well-designed threats usually don't have to be carried out. Books: Drugs and Drug Policy: What Everyone Needs to Know (with Jonathan Caulkins and Angela Hawken) When Brute Force Fails: How to Have Less Crime and Less Punishment (Princeton, 2009; named one of the "books of the year" by The Economist Against Excess: Drug Policy for Results (Basic, 1993) Marijuana: Costs of Abuse, Costs of Control (Greenwood, 1989) UCLA Homepage Curriculum Vitae Contact: Markarkleiman-at-gmail.com