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Budowsky: Michelle Obama or Tammy Duckworth for VP

Budowsky: Michelle Obama or Tammy Duckworth for VP
© Getty Images/Greg Nash

In one of the most important elections in presidential history, I believe former first lady Michelle ObamaMichelle LeVaughn Robinson ObamaMichelle Obama releases her voting playlist Obama to young voters: Create 'a new normal in America' by voting for Biden Obama hits trail to help Biden, protect legacy MORE or Sen. Tammy DuckworthLadda (Tammy) Tammy DuckworthAmy Coney Barrett's extreme views put women's rights in jeopardy Trump slight against Gold Star families adds to military woes McConnell focuses on confirming judicial nominees with COVID-19 talks stalled MORE (D-Ill.) would be the strongest running mates for former Vice President Joe BidenJoe BidenGiuliani goes off on Fox Business host after she compares him to Christopher Steele Trump looks to shore up support in Nebraska Jeff Daniels narrates new Biden campaign ad for Michigan MORE. If President TrumpDonald John TrumpGiuliani goes off on Fox Business host after she compares him to Christopher Steele Trump looks to shore up support in Nebraska NYT: Trump had 7 million in debt mostly tied to Chicago project forgiven MORE is reelected, it would be catastrophic for national unity and democracy.

It is plausible Trump is orchestrating a total meltdown and destruction of the Republican Party that would bring control of the Senate to Democrats, and an increase of Democratic seats in the House — while Republican leaders turn their party into sycophants of a president whose actions are condemned as dangerous by an unprecedented galaxy of American military leaders of the last 50 years.

It is also possible Trump loses the popular vote substantially but is reelected by a narrow Electoral College majority. This would bring celebrations by despots, tyrants and dictators everywhere and would create the most dangerous threat to American democracy since 1776 and the most explosive dangers of national division since the Civil War.

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The choice in this election is stark, historic, fateful and clear.

Democrats are the patriot party, the national unity party, the social justice party, the economic equality party and the better health care party of America.

Republicans are the party of Donald Trump, obeying his commands to foment national division, weaponizing politics of personal destruction, glorifying crony capitalism, advancing income inequality, promoting social injustice, and seeking to misuse our military into being an occupying power that would “dominate” peaceful American citizens and treat them as enemy combatants.

Given the enormity and indescribable consequences of the election, words cannot fully describe the importance of Biden’s choice for vice president.

Having been very public for months championing the idea of Michelle Obama for VP and having discussed this privately with many Democrats, I can report two things.

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First, literally every person I talked to believes the former first lady would be the strongest candidate to help Joe Biden be elected and revitalize democracy, social justice and national unity for America. Second, most of those I have talked to believe she would never consider it, because she does not want to do it.

I have no information about what Obama privately believes. I would quote my greatest hero who said “ask not what your country can do for you, ask what you can do for your country.” Considering the enormity of the election, the dangers facing our democracy, the divisions gripping our nation, and the world-changing role the former first lady can play, this call to action of former President Kennedy is appropriate today.

Duckworth would also be a profound and powerful choice for vice president. She is a true American hero who has shown physical and moral courage in combat and a passionate patriot who has earned great respect from her peers while serving with distinction in the House and Senate.

Like Obama when she was first lady, Duckworth has been a tireless champion for active duty troops, military families and veterans who I predict could provide decisive support for Biden in November. Like Obama, she would have vast appeal in all 50 states and significantly improve the chances of Democrats winning control of the Senate.

Profound, historic and epochal events are occurring in America today. Military families, military leaders throughout recent generations, defenders of democracy in an America that is leader of the free world, patriots who yearn for national unity and simple justice throughout America, do not want our communities turned into occupied territories where Americans are treated like enemy combatants to be dominated at gunpoint through martial law, the Insurrection Act or any tool of tyrants.

Historians will give a standing ovation to the galaxy of military leaders who speak out with honor alongside other voices for human rights and democracy.

A Biden-Obama or Biden-Duckworth team would have vast appeal to true patriots, in all 50 states, throughout this land we love.

Budowsky was an aide to former Sen. Lloyd Bentsen (D-Texas) and former Rep. Bill Alexander (D-Ark.), who was chief deputy majority whip of the House of Representatives. He holds an LLM in international financial law from the London School of Economics.