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The Vice Presidency is No Longer a Joke

Julian Zelizerwrote for CNN about the importance of the vice presidency: 

We think about the vice presidency in all the wrong ways.
Campaign coverage tends to focus exclusively on which vice presidential pick will be best for the party nominee in the November election.
Almost every conversation revolves around what a potential running mate would add or detract from the party ticket. Could the nominees bring any swing states with them? Do their personalities or experience make up for the perceived weaknesses of the main candidate?
Is there something about their personal background or policy agenda that would excite key constituencies? Might they have a scandal in their background that could bring down the entire campaign?
The question that we rarely ask, but which is the most pertinent of all, is how will that person do at the job?