Sally Quinn makes the silly argument:
The big question right now among Republicans is how to remove Vice President Cheney from office. Even before this week's blockbuster series in The Post, discontent in Republican ranks was rising.
As the reputed architect of the war in Iraq, Cheney is viewed as toxic, and as the administration's leading proponent of an attack on Iran, he is seen as dangerous. As long as he remains vice president, according to this thinking, he has the potential to drag down every member of the party -- including the presidential nominee -- in next year's elections...
The idea is to install a vice president who could beat the Democratic nominee in 2008. It's unlikely that any of the top three Republican candidates -- former New York Mayor Rudolph Giuliani, Sen. John McCain of Arizona or former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney -- would want the job, for fear that association with Bush's war would be the kiss of death...
That leaves Fred Thompson. Everybody loves Fred. He has the healing qualities of Gerald Ford and the movie-star appeal of Ronald Reagan. He is relatively moderate on social issues. He has a reputation as a peacemaker and a compromiser. And he has a good sense of humor.
Captain Ed spends more ink debunking this argument than it's worth. But I'll add to the arguments he makes -- why would Thompson want the job? Democrats would clearly use the confirmation process to attempt to 'rough him up,' and would argue forcefully that by accepting Cheney's job -- a job that became open because of 'Cheney's unpopular war' -- that he was accepting responsibility for the war, as well.
Polls show that Thompson has a good chance at the nomination and the presidency without having the job of Vice President. And let's remember -- the Vice Presidency is the kiss of death for presidential aspirations. George HW Bush was one of the very few who have successfully made that jump. So why would Thompson choose to make it?
If anyone wants to take bets on the Quinn scenario, send an E-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org. I'll give good odds.