Cockburn attended Joe Biden’s virtual press conference on Wednesday afternoon. As he struggled to keep his eyes open, he noticed a small piece of paper by Biden’s elbow — a list of names, written in a shaky hand. So Cockburn screenshotted it, then turned his desktop upside down. Here’s Joe Biden’s shortlist for America’s first female vice president: 

Eleanor Roosevelt

Why sandbag the Senate when you can handbag it? Mrs Roosevelt is a rising star of the Democratic left’s woke wing. She’s never seen in public without her handbag, and it’s crammed with big plans for the post-COVID-19 bounce-back. The Whalemen’s Union has already endorsed her proposal to bring American industry back from China, starting with a WPA-style program to revive the corset-making industry. She’s also planning for an all-American 5G network made from hemp cables, and she’s working with Elon Musk on low-carbon public transport by horse and cart.

Nina Simone

Fiery folk and jazz piano-basher Simone was an early supporter of Biden’s bold plan to put a record player in the home of every Negro family. As president, Biden will resume the hallowed tradition, begun in the Obama years and sadly abandoned during the Trump interregnum, of tweeting out the presidential playlist on public holidays. Vice President Simone will bring youthful pep and classical chops to Biden’s list of favorite 78s. Goodbye Perry Como, hello Harry Belafonte!

Annie Oakley

Unlike most congresspersons, Biden, who served in a militia in 1776, knows what war is like, though sometimes he has trouble remembering. That’s why he’s recruiting sylphlike sharpshootrix Annie Oakley to shoot down the NRA. This plucky little lady’s plans for gun control will blow your head off. She’ll force Congress to finally ban muzzle-loading blunderbusses — at gunpoint!

Edith Wharton

Wharton can unite the Democratic coalition around a good story about the concerns of everyday Americans. Suburban Democrats love her gardening tips, while the diverse ‘urban’ population that Biden wants to save from Republican plantations thrill to her elegant lesbianism. And the younger cohort of voters, the ones born after 1920, recognize that the answer to youth unemployment lies in her policy papers on the Servant Problem.

Jackie Kennedy

Many famous balls have been held the White House, but more balls were held in the Kennedy administration than any other. An accomplished hostess who’s sure to secure a diplomatic advantage when she foxtrots with Vladimir Putin, Jackie is committed to equal pay for women in key sectors of the economy such as lace-making, table-setting and needlepoint. She also intends to reopen the White House discotheque, closed since 1968, with its original sound-system designed by Leonard Bernstein.

Nancy Reagan

And how do you win those cottonpickin’, Rust-Beltin’ Reagan Democrats? Bring in Nancy! When Biden smells Nancy’s hair, he smells the balm of cross-partisan amity. He’s reaching across the aisle for a dose of Hollywood glamor, and she’s reaching around 90. Committed to the struggle against obesity, Nancy has set up a working party with Sara Lee and Uncle Ben. She’s also well-connected when it comes to foreign policy: all it takes to make sure there’s no Russian malarkey in 2020 is a call to Raisa Gorbachev.

Elizabeth Warren

The presence of Warren’s name on this list confirms the impression that, mentally speaking, Biden is not all there. Everyone knows that Sen. Warren died in the Spanish Flu epidemic of 1919, and again in the Democratic primaries of 2020.