It appears that the traditional interpretation of Donald Trump's VP selection is getting it mostly wrong. Partisan press aside, most commentary has focused on how Trump's VP selection, like any presidential candidate's, is used to appeal to segments of a party's base. However, if reports of Trump's offer of a powerful VP role to Gov. Kasich are true, then Trump likely has something else in mind: segmenting the expanding responsibilities of the presidency to make the colossal role more manageable and a governing team more effective.
Pressures on the presidency as an institution have certainly made VPs more relevant to American governance since 2000. Trump's vision is likely to bring clarity to the unstructred influential VP and to adopt what we often see in business: a CEO as visionary and communicator who brings on a COO as the diligent executor. Think Steve Jobs and Tim Cook. It's a model that would help a candidate like Trump focus where he's best, while leaving the day-to-day operations to an experienced governor skilled at producing legislative outcomes. Regardless of which party introduces it, a segmented model is very compelling during a historical moment when the presidency is becoming ever stronger as the legislative branch falters. And, chime in if I'm wrong, but it may be closer to the original vision of the founders.
Note: Ryan has a deep (perhaps morbid?) interest in the 2016 election cycle, a history of recruiting lobbying and public affairs executives in DC, a spouse who was a Senate Judiciary staffer, and advanced academic training in political science. He loves this stuff.
One day this past May, Donald Trump's eldest son, Donald Trump Jr., reached out to a senior adviser to Gov. John Kasich of Ohio, who left the presidential race just a few weeks before. ...according to the Kasich adviser (who spoke only under the condition that he not be named), Donald Jr. wanted to make him an offer nonetheless: Did he have any interest in being the most powerful vice president in history? When Kasich's adviser asked how this would be the case, Donald Jr. explained that his father's vice president would be in charge of domestic and foreign policy. Then what, the adviser asked, would Trump be in charge of? "Making America great again" was the casual reply.