Good and Pawlenty Palin

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There. I had that headline ready to go, and by golly, I'm going to use it. (Dawn Summers already won the Sarah Palin punny headline contest: "Palin Comparison.")

I was excited this morning to hear the buzz about Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin, as I hadn't been hearing her name in the last week or so. Palin is both a good choice and a brilliant political move.

As a political move, choosing Palin helps McCain reach out to independent voters and Democrats. Some, particularly Hillary PUMAs, will like her because she's female. Others will appreciate her hard work in rooting out political corruption in Alaska. It warmed my heart to hear her say the phrase "good ol' boy network."

At the same time, Palin fires up the conservative base. Time magazine has posted a McCain campaign report that they raised $3 million between when the announcement was made and 6 pm today. She's a hunter, she's a homeschooler, she supports domestic oil exploration. She's pro-life -- not just a theoretical pro-lifer, but one who chose life when she learned her fifth child, a son, would have Down Syndrome.

My only worry was how well she'll make the jump from small-state politics to the national stage, but when I think of the depth of corruption she had to face in the Alaska government, I think she's ready for anything. True, she was a beauty queen, but she knows how to throw an elbow under the basket, too.

Other reactions:

Rod Dreher: "Whatever crossover appeal the Palin pick may or may not have, McCain has just energized the base going into his convention -- and, I think, beyond. Next week in St. Paul is going to be a lot different than a lot of us thought it would be."

Dustbury has a photo of her as a high school basketball player who led her team to the state championship.

MORE: My friend David Russ from Coral Ridge Ministries let me know about a three-minute "Learn2Discern" video they did recently about two families who chose life for their unborn children who had Down Syndrome. One of those families is the Palin family.

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James Downing said:

What an amazing pick by McCain!! Gov. Palin brings in a distinguished record of executive experience, running a successful and popular Government in Alaska. An ideal ticket is one where 1 person brings in the Washington experience/foreign policy/national security experience and the other brings in executive/administrative experience. This can be seen from all winning tickets in the past few decades. The republican ticket is the perfect ticket now. She has a record of clean governance, bipartisanship and reducing wasteful spending and is an ideal choice for McCain's VP.

For all those who wish to raise the 'experience' question - do you honestly believe that Gov. Palin is too inexperienced to be President (a post for which, btw, she is NOT running for) despite being the Governor of Alaska for nearly 2 years and a mayor for many years before that, while Sen Obama is experienced enough to be President (a post he is running for)? If you honestly believe Palin is inexperienced, there is now way you could support Obama. Palin brings in executive experience, McCain and Biden bring Washington, foreign policy experience - what exactly does Obama bring in? Neither of the 2.

Also, it is incorrect to see the choice of Gov Palin as a gimmick to pander to the women voters. While that is a bonus, the most important point is that she would be an excellent person for the role of VP in McCain's administration, with the executive experience, to help him run the country effectively. None of us know too much about her, but whatever little Ive heard so far is immensely impressive. I request all voters to give her a fair chance, do some research and find out about her, and you will see that her candidacy is no gimmick.

Roy said:

My youngest sister and family have lived in Juneau for several decades. She has once in a while been very grass roots active. Called her the other day to kid her (big brother sort of thing, if you'll forgive the possible conflation of allusions). Nothing but cheers. If but part of what I heard regarding her handling of the old boy network is true, she does, indeed, wipe her nose with Chuck Norris. And dusts with Rambo. (Maybe we can figure out a way to send Kathy Taylor to apprentice under Palin for a while.)

Mark Author Profile Page said:

You’re a good soldier, Michael . . . but we know you're much, much smarter than that.

Sarah Palin seems like a very nice, energetic and poised woman. I get the impression that she and her husband would be great dinner guests. I’m also impressed that she was a Buchanan supporter in 1996. So was I. But Vice President? Are you kidding me?!?

I used to respect McCain, but this choice reveals him to be the most selfish and reckless Presidential candidate of my lifetime.

He’s reckless because, as the Presidential candidate actuarially MOST likely to die or become disabled in office, he has chosen someone Presidential scholars agree is the LEAST known, the LEAST experienced, and the LEAST credentialed person to join a major-party ticket in the modern era! And he’s selfish because he consciously placed his flawed political stratagem ahead of the security and stability of the Republic. So much for “Country First” . . . more accurately it’s: “Me First: Country be Damned”.

This “Hail Mary” pass for Hillary supporters is completely tone-deaf to the genuine unity that developed last week at the DNC. I’m no Democrat, but even my skeptical eyes could see THAT. And the selection of a woman who would have the victims of rape and incest bear their attackers’ babies is a transparent and unsophisticated pander to Evangelicals, many of whom (like myself) recognize that the abortion debate is difficult and highly nuanced, and that the Church might just benefit from beginning to advance the ENTIRE agenda of Jesus, not just a couple of issues He never saw fit to build a sermon around.

Jeremy Good said:

What a brilliant selection! I was dead set against voting for McCain until he announced Palin would be joining him. She is easily the most qualified for the position and amusingly more qualified for the Presidential nomination than Obamessiah is. She knows how to buck the establishment and do what is right regardless of circumstance. The highest qualifier for the position she is seeking is judgement and she has it in spades. I have gone from a none of the above vote to enthusiastically supporting this ticket.

How times change. I remember being told in 1984, when another very experienced candidate chose a very inexperienced female running mate, that God had ordained that only a man should be the leader of the free world.

But my mind first went to 1988 when another republican whom conservatives didn't trust picked a running mate who had the conservative credentials. Also made me think of an earlier Republican ticket picking Gov. Roosevelt.

Both were wins for the Republicans so perhaps McCain can overcome the fact that America has rejected the combat veteran in every election since 1988. Bush Sr., Dole and Kerry all saw combat, and Gore served in a combat zone. But for 16 years we've elected men who... well, how can I say this politely? Even Bush Sr. had a running mate who... well, how can I say this politely?

Hope Sen. McCain can beat that curse. But I fear that he won't, no matter what he does.

(I had to check that what Mark said was true, and it isn't:
- Ferraro served three terms in the House.
- Quayle, whom I recalled as inexperienced, had actually served twelve years in the House and Senate -- should've known that about our Favorite Son.
- Roosevelt had only been governor of NY for two years, but he had been Assistant Sec. of the Navy under McKinley for two years before that.
- For 500 points and the win, can anyone tell me what VP candidate in the last 50 years had probably less experience than Palin? Hint: he's the reason why we had a president who served having received votes in only one state!)

Mark Author Profile Page said:

Forrest, it gets even worse than I argued above. Today we learned from a Palin Statement released by the campaign that her 17-yr. old daughter is pregnant! Palin AND McCain knew it when he offered and she accepted the VP slot! They had hoped to keep it a secret through Nov. 4, but the rumor mill forced it out under cover of Hurricane Gustav.

How could a responsible mother have accepted the VP spot KNOWING that her daughter was pregnant AND WOULD NEED HER MORE THAN EVER? That on top of her responsibilities toward her 3-month-old special needs child WHO WOULD ALSO NEED HER??????

Equally disturbing, what kind of man would be willing to tempt her ambition with such an offer once he learned of those facts? Again, McCain's recklessness is simply breathtaking.

But perhaps the most disturbing part for me is that Palin’s Statement on the pregnancy says absolutely nothing about the role of the family’s faith, if any, in connection with this crisis. If she were a person of faith – as some have implied – then wouldn’t it be natural to draw from that spiritual well in surmounting this challenge?!?

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This page contains a single entry by Michael Bates published on August 29, 2008 11:00 PM.

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