Romney/Rafalca in 2012!

I said in the previous post that I suspected that Mitt Romney may do something splashy to give his campaign a badly needed boost and break out of being stuck behind Barack Obama in the polls. One action that he has at his disposal is his choice of running mate.

When faced with a similar situation in 2008, John McCain gambled with Sarah Palin, thinking that that particular shot of adrenaline was what his campaign needed. He announced her as his pick on August 29, 2008. This, coupled with the hoopla surrounding the Republican convention September 1-4, gave him the most momentary of upticks beginning in the first week of September, giving him a lead from September 7 to 17 before his numbers sank below Obama’s again, never to return.

While McCain actually does like to gamble, including at casinos, Romney seems a much more cautious type. But as the Republican party convention approaches, speculation is mounting about whom he will pick. Will he too gamble with someone unexpected? Or will it be someone familiar and safe?

I can help him.

I think he should literally choose a dark horse and pick Rafalca. After all, who fits the label of ‘running mate’ better than a real horse? And thanks to the Olympics, Rafalca already has high name recognition. Unlike Sarah Palin, Rafalca seems completely ready for prime time and to be on TV and in front of crowds. She is poised and handles the glare of publicity with aplomb. There will be no issues with regard to her birth certificate because no one’s genealogy is more carefully monitored and recorded than those of thoroughbred horses. She presumably has no offshore accounts and income tax problems and will not commit any gaffes. She will also help with those demographics in which Romney is weak, women and people of color.

Rafalca will be able to fulfill her duties because the only task required of the vice president by the US constitution is to cast a tie-breaking vote in the Senate. It is true that she will always vote ‘neigh’ but the constitution does not specify how you should vote.

Romney/Rafalca in 2012!


  1. AndrewD says

    Well there is an historical precedent for this. The Roman Emperor Caligula is reputed to have had his horse elected Consol

  2. Loqi says

    I don’t know about the “she won’t commit any gaffes” thing. Is taking a dump on camera not considered a gaffe?

  3. invivoMark says

    She might poop on stage though.

    Still, not nearly as embarrassing as half the things Sarah Palin did in front of cameras.

  4. EmuSam says

    Nitpick: she’s an Oldenburger, not a Thouroughbred. An Oldenburger certainly has no less carefully monitored a genealogy.

  5. Dave, ex-Kwisatz Haderach says

    That’s just crazy enough to work. Stop give the Romney campaign good ideas!!

  6. Pierce R. Butler says

    Candidates for national office should have some political background.

    Just which city is Rafalca Mare of?

  7. Mano Singham says

    I was not aware that that ‘Thoroughbred’ was a technical term. I had always assumed that it was a generic name given for those horses whose breeding is carefully controlled to achieve certain results.

    Thanks for the information. One learns new things all the time.

  8. UnknownEric says

    Here I come waltzing into your amusing quip to bore everyone to death with technicalities. 😉

    Caligula wasn’t actually going to make his horse consul. He meant it as a jab at the men who were consuls/senators. Sort of a “You guys are so dumb, might as well put a horse in your job.” Suetonius, who never let truth get in the way of a juicy story, reported it as an actual fact (OMG, he was going to make a horse consul!) to liven up his book (as he did with most of the other emperors he profiled).

    Sorry, I’m a Roman history buff, we’re annoying like this. 🙂

  9. prtsimmons says

    EmuSam: It is true that Rafalca is an Oldenburger, not a Thoroughbred horse, but she is a thoroughbred horse. If you don’t capitalize it, it’s a synonym for ‘purebred’ or ‘pedigreed’.

  10. Kimpatsu says

    There is, of course, a precedent for this. Didn’t Nero appoint his horse to the Roman senate?

  11. Francisco Bacopa says

    Thoroughbreds are horses bred for maximum speed at medium distances, they are somewhat derived from Arabian stock. Quarter horses are bred for quick sprints and are much more muscular than the lean and mean thoroughbreds. All the horses in the Triple Crown are Thoroughbreds.

    I know almost nothing of horses, but I do play the ponies if I am a little bit ahead. I overheard an economist giving a lecture on Prospect Theory who described a horse betting strategy. Doing well at the track is a matter of understanding humans, not horses. I go to the track only on quarter horse days when the betting is fast and furious. I have blown my $200 a couple of times, but I usually do a little better than even and have turned 200 into 600 quite a few times.

    But how is this possible? Shouldn’t prospect theory bettors become so common that the payouts shift? Hah, we are betting contrary to normal human perceptions of risk and our ignorance is a strength.

    This really does work. I am about four thou ahead. This is a life changing amount of money for me, and I bet only when two hundred is not a life changing amount of money.

  12. Mano Singham says

    I think your point about betting based on human behavior is consistent with what behavioral economists in general like Dan Areily and Daniel Kahneman find. That humans are not rational but irrational in predictable ways.

    I for one am quite risk averse, quite irrationally so. If I were a gambler and someone knew that, I am pretty sure that they would be able to figure out how to consistently beat me.

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