Quayle was actually a fairly good choice. One of my college friends-a liberal who went to work for Liz Holzman before she clerked for Justice Blackmun on the USSC told me when we got together a few years after school, that she assumed Dan Quayle was an idiot Until she had to work with him on some house-senate issue. She noted that while she (a nice very liberal Jewish girl from Tenafly) had almost nothing in common with Quayle-political or otherwise-he was one of the best prepared and most knowledgeable senators-on just about any subject
lots of people think Gerald Ford was a clumsy bumbling guy due to the media depicting him as such. Of course people who actually knew the score also knew that he was the best athlete to ever be president and was an accomplished skier, tennis player as well as a guy who could have played pro football.