Since John Edwards shaped up as the conventional wisdom choice for John Kerry's Running Mate, the consummately colorless Kerry chose him, even though Edwards is -- to put it generously -- not a proven vote-getter.
When George H.W. Bush picked Dan Quayle, a wealthy, handsome young one-term Senator as his VP, it was a bold and surprising stroke - a bold and surprising stroke that backfired when the opposition piled on, and Quayle proved to be not ready for prime time. The originality of choosing a wealthy, handsome young one-term Senator having been expended fifteen years since, Kerry's choice of Edwards was a pedestrian action that comports perfectly with the candidate's own yawn-inducing style.
Now this all presents the delicious opportunity for Dick Cheney, son of blue-collar parents, a thoroughly self-made, pulled-himself-up-by-his-own-bootstraps man to answer Edwards exaggerated rags-to-riches vamp with something like, "Young man, I knew Horatio Alger. Horatio Alger was a friend of mine, and you're no Horatio Alger."