August 29, 2008

Will It Be Gov. Palin (R-AK)?

Seriously? On the one hand it's an incredibly savvy choice in certain areas. She's got a great personal story and will thrill the Right and some PUMAs, and she'd be an historic choice. But a man, a 72 year-old man, whose campaign is essentially "experience-to-be-ready-on-day-1" (mixed in with healthy sprinkles of P.O.W.) running with someone who has been governor of one of the country's least populous states for less than 2 years (and who before that was mayor of a tiny town)? That would be kind of strange.

UPDATE: Benen's initial reaction hits on 2 interesting things. Just yesterday McCain campaign aides were saying a Palin pick would conflict with the message of their campaign. Secondly, it's not just the people and the press that don't know her, neither does McCain. So much for all that analysis that given McCain's personality he was likely to pick someone who was close to him personally.

UPDATE 2: LGM's Alaskan comments on her here.

Posted by armand at August 29, 2008 08:56 AM | TrackBack | Posted to Politics


Well her spokesperson says she'll be at the Alaska State Fair today. And Tim Pawlenty will be at the Minnesota State Fair today. It's apparently State Fair season.

But Ambinder is reporting there's now a second plane owned by a McCain donor heading from Alaska to Ohio.

Posted by: Armand at August 29, 2008 09:34 AM | PERMALINK

And Mittens is going to be here in MA today, I'm hearing. Where's Joementum this morning?

Posted by: jacflash at August 29, 2008 10:05 AM | PERMALINK

I read somewhere she is embroiled in a scandal, but could not find what it was (I did not look very hard). Any idea what it is about?

Posted by: Jpoff at August 29, 2008 10:32 AM | PERMALINK

It's official, but, I'm with you Armand: Seriously? 44-year-old beauty queen? Snowmobile champ? Serial dilettante with nice legs? I understand wanting to bring youth and vigor to a ticket headed by someone utterly moribund and charmless, but I think he overshot a bit. I guess it's fine with me. And it's not like the obvious contradiction of his principal meme regarding what it takes to qualify a person for CinC significantly deviates from the myriad other ways he's decided black is white when it seems to give a short-term political advantage, but, still, seriously?

Well, I'm only speaking for one democrat here that I know of, but while more or less I'm sure she's a capable debater and attack dog (because if she doesn't even have that, I have positively zero idea why he'd tap her), I'm breathing a big sigh of relief that it's not Ridge, or someone else with comparable gravitas. She may have made the ticket younger (almost anybody would have), but IMHO, she also makes it a lot less substantial.

Posted by: moon at August 29, 2008 10:55 AM | PERMALINK

I think it could be big win for the Republican Party in that on paper she seems a much more appealling face for the future of the party than Bobby "The Excorcist" Jindal and former-mullet man Tim "I couldn't reach 50% in either of my wins" Pawlenty. But I'd emphasize the "could be" b/c I've never seen her speak, anywhere, ever - so who knows how she'll handle a national campaign. But if she does acquit herself well the party's got a lot to look forward to.

That said, while I think it's good for the party, I'm not at all sure it's good for McCain. This is a risky pick.

Posted by: Armand at August 29, 2008 11:24 AM | PERMALINK

Oh, and Poff, here's Josh Marshall's description of the scandal: "Her brother-in-law is a state trooper who is in the midst of an ugly custody battle with her sister. And she's accused of getting the state police to fire him. Recently she was forced to admit that one of her aides had done this, though she insists she didn't know."

Posted by: Armand at August 29, 2008 11:34 AM | PERMALINK

It must have dawned on SOMEBODY that she will be 48 in 2012 and having a national campaign under her belt could make her a real force then. I wonder if that somebody has McCain's ear (not that Somebody would use that argument to his face).

Posted by: jacflash at August 29, 2008 11:38 AM | PERMALINK

Uh, who the hell is she?

Points to McCain for pushing Obama off the news cycle (he'll win today). Points to McCain for youth/vigor or whatever choosing someone like this will do. I haven't seen her speak either, so I have no idea whether she's any good or not (I'm assuming she's pretty good, else she wouldn't have gotten considered).

She's obviously very, very light on experience. I don't know how well that will play out with voters.

Posted by: baltar at August 29, 2008 11:50 AM | PERMALINK

. . . or what it will do to McCain's primary meme against Obama. And I can only imagine that, even in our vapid debate format, McCain's going to get hit again and again on the experience issue and how it relates to his own Veep pick.

Posted by: moon at August 29, 2008 12:45 PM | PERMALINK

From the Times:

“They’re beyond ecstatic,” said Ralph Reed, the former head of the Christian Coalition. “This is a home run. She is a reformer governor who is solidly pro-life and a person of deep Christian faith. And she is really one of the bright shining new stars in the Republican firmament.”

Ms. Palin is known to conservatives for choosing not to have an abortion after learning two years ago that she was carrying a child with Down syndrome. “It is almost impossible to exaggerate how important that is to the conservative faith community,” Mr. Reed said.

So apparently getting after the terrorists with someone experienced in national security is important, but opting not to abort a Down's baby, well, that really takes the cake for establishing presidential credentials.

I applaud her choice as reflecting personal principle and great fortitude, but I wouldn't have it foisted on anyone. Moreover, it's pretty obvious that a lot of Americans couldn't have made that choice without knowingly crippling themselves economically in a system that, under GOP policies, manifests more or less total indifference to the difficulties of raising a disabled child.

I would just love to see some debate moderator ask her whether, in holding that such a decision isn't personal but rather should be mandated by the state, she would be willing to ensure that even the poorest mother would have the same health care and therapeutic support that she had the luxury of anticipating for her own child when she decided to have him. Of course, no one would dare ask her such an impertinent question. It might seem "biased" to ask her to reconcile her personal choices and her policy positions. But it's nice to dream of a commentariat that, you know, did its job.

Posted by: moon at August 29, 2008 01:15 PM | PERMALINK

She's an evangelical who doesn't have a southern accent. I'm sure that's a big part of the story here.

Posted by: jacflash at August 29, 2008 02:24 PM | PERMALINK
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