DENVER
07/19/2013 05:16 pm ET

John Hickenlooper Should Be Hillary Clinton's Running Mate In 2016: Tina Brown, Daily Beast

Tina Brown, Editor-in-Chief of The Daily Beast and Newsweek, thinks she has found the perfect running mate for Hillary Clinton in 2016 -- Colorado Gov. John Hickenlooper.

In a recent Daily Beast editorial titled "I Know Who Hillary's Running Mate Should Be," Brown lays out a strong argument for Hickenlooper.

"He's the antithesis of all the halitotic miseries that define the choked-up discord of politics in the capital," Brown writes, "where expectations of passing effective legislation are now so low we are all ecstatic when John McCain rescues a lame attempt to reduce the historic number of filibusters."

Brown writes that she was impressed with Hickenlooper while watching him "at close range" when she attended this week's Biennial of the Americas summit that the Democratic governor co-hosted this week in Denver.

Hickenlooper understands the vital connections between the Americas," Brown writes in The Daily Beast. "That perspective could bring refreshing things to our national conversation during the next presidential cycle. Plus, as befits a guy with the fresh gusts off the Rockies at his back, he's breezy, loose, and accessible, an enterprising entrepreneur who's also a sophisticated mover between the worlds of commerce, culture, and tech."

Brown adds: "Hickenlooper built his success in the brewery business, and he’s as welcoming as your local neighborhood tavern."

Read Tina Brown's entire fascinating piece at The Daily Beast.

Democratic strategist and former White House adviser David Axelrod said Friday that Hillary Clinton, who he helped then-candidate Barack Obama beat in the 2008 Democratic primary, will likely end up being the party's presidential candidate in 2016.

"I think that Hillary Clinton probably will be the candidate," Axelrod said Friday on MSNBC.

Of course, Clinton has not said if in fact she is going to run in 2016.

As governor, Hickenlooper has served during an incredibly historic legislative session in Colorado and signed into law several landmark measures in the state, including: same-sex civil unions, recreational marijuana legalization and a strict gun control package.

Hickenlooper has previously made it onto The Washington Post's "10 Most Popular Governors" list and was named the country's third most popular sitting governor in the country in 2011 by Public Policy Polling.

Earlier this year, the governor's Chief Strategy Officer Alan Salazar, fueled presidential speculations in an interview with 5280 Magazine. In response to the question, "Will we ever see a President Hickenlooper?" Salazar gave a straightforward, "I hope so."

However, Hickenlooper has generally tried to dispel notions that he should seek higher office in the White House. Speaking before the City Club of Denver last year, Hickenlooper said about the prospect of him being president:

A) I wouldn’t be good; B) I couldn’t possibly win; C) I love what I’m doing. So, president, vice president, senator – as long as the community is willing to re-elect me, I’ll be here as governor as long as you’ll have me.

It also remains to be seen if all the new laws passed in Colorado this year wind up being remembered for the right reasons. The gun laws passed this year in Colorado are some of the toughest in the nation and two Democratic state lawmakers are now facing recall efforts for their support of the laws, Sens. Angela Giron and John Morse.

The governor has also taken heat from environmentalists over hydraulic fracturing.

In February of last year, Hickenlooper stirred up some controversy after recording an ad for the Colorado Oil and Gas Association in which he said, "we have not had one instance of groundwater contamination associated with drilling and hydraulic fracturing, and we plan to keep it that way."

After the city of Longmont enacted a fracking ban, Hickenlooper told CBS4 that the state will sue any city that bans fracking.

He later walked back that statement, but just this month, the State of Colorado has entered into a lawsuit along with oil and gas companies in a lawsuit against Longmont over their fracking ban.

“Hickenlooper said in December that the state wouldn’t sue Longmont over the initiative," Sam Schabacker an organizer with Food and Water watch told The Colorado Independent. "He seemed to respect the citizens will and the democratic process represented by the initiative. But now I guess he thinks it’s worth spending tax dollars to fight against it. This is consistent with his pattern of behavior. He’s been a number one cheerleader for oil and gas in the state… He’s ignored the citizens who are being impacted by fracking.”

In a recent PPP poll, Colorado voters did not share Salazar's enthusiasm for a Hickenlooper Presidential bid -- only 21 percent of voters in the state think he should run to 64 percent who think he should not.

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