Friday, August 29, 2008

McCain-Palin... Odd Couple 08

To the shock of the chattering classes, John McCain has chosen Gov. Sarah Palin (R-AK) to be his running mate. Quick run down of the positives and negatives:

Positives: She is in lock step with his base on almost every issue. That's something McCain desperately needed. She's a woman. This fits with McCain's overt attempt to lure Hillary supporters. Note that the two democrats she mentioned in her remarks were Geraldine Ferraro and Hillary Clinton not Barack Obama and Joe Biden. She's not from Washington. She has some maverick credentials. She probably takes Alaska off the map. She might help in Montana, the Dakotas and Colorado with her NRA membership. Working class roots.

Negatives: She has less than two years experience in even state-wide elected office. Yes, she has more executive experience than Obama-Biden, but she also has more than McCain. For a 72 year old candidate with a medical history longer than my arm to be choosing someone this green is a little worrisome. What exactly are her foreign policy credentials aside from having a son shipping off to war? She's under investigation for firing a bureaucrat for failing to fire her brother-in-law who was divorcing her sister. It may have been a staffer acting without her knowledge but it smells to high heaven. In a year where the Alaska Republican party is disentegrating before our eyes (Sen. Stevens (R-AK), Rep. Young (R-AK)), do you really want to be reminding people about bridges to nowhere? Based on today's introduction she's not going to wow anyone with her speaking skills which makes both halves of the Republican ticket.

I get what McCain was thinking with this pick. However, I would have gone with Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchinson (R-TX) if the criteria were conservative and female. What really would concern me if I were John McCain is it makes this election at least partially about the Republican ticket. McCain has made some progress in the polls making this election about the Democratic ticket. I don't think the Republicans necessarily want the spotlight.

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