First off – I’m not here to diminish Sarah Palin herself – she’s simply not qualified to be President of the United States. Yes she’s the governor of Alaska. She was also a small town mayor – with all this she brings the reputation of a straight talking reformist. She balances out the McCain ticket when it comes to ideology which will appeal to right wing nuts – I mean voters.
Basically, if you close one eye, squint with the other, and look at this, it all makes sense.
Who is Sarah Palin? Here’s some basic background:
- She was elected Alaska’s governor a little over a year and a half ago. Her previous office was mayor of Wasilla, a small town outside Anchorage. She has no foreign policy experience.
- Palin is strongly anti-choice, opposing abortion even in the case of rape or incest.
- She supported right-wing extremist Pat Buchanan for president in 2000.
- Palin thinks creationism should be taught in public schools.
- She’s doesn’t think humans are the cause of climate change.
- She’s solidly in line with John McCain’s “Big Oil first” energy policy. She’s pushed hard for more oil drilling and says renewables won’t be ready for years. She also sued the Bush administration for listing polar bears as an endangered speciesâ€”she was worried it would interfere with more oil drilling in Alaska.
- How closely did John McCain vet this choice? He met Sarah Palin once at a meeting. They spoke a second time, last Sunday, when he called her about being vice-president. Then he offered her the position.
It’s quite obvious with this pick that the McCain is attempting to woo Hillary Clinton voters disappointed with Barack Obama’s nomination. As if everyone voted for her simply because she’s a woman. It would be as if Alan Keyes would be a valid replacement for Obama because they’re both black. It’s insulting. And I’m sure that some former Clinton supporters will fall for it. Problem is, those voters were never going to vote for Obama anyway. But anyone who voted for Clinton based on her progressive record, healthcare advocacy, support for reproductive rights, her wealth of Senate experience – well, they’ll be sorely disappointed that John McCain thinks that Palin matches up to her.
You believe this pick was made on qualifications? Ask yourself this: until last Saturday, Hillary Clinton was still in the running for the democratic VP nomination; do you think that Palin would have received the nomination if Clinton was chosen? There’s nothing she brings outside of her gender that couldn’t have been brought by another candidate in that case. Mitt Romney brings a conservative rep. Rudy Guliani brings the tough talking.
OK – she brings one other thing – her youth. Kay Bailey Richardson would have been more sensible a choice, but at 65, she doesn’t fit the need. She does have loads of experience having been in the Senate since 1993. There’s that word: experience.
Which McCain are we to believe? The one that railed against Obama’s inexperience or the one that chose someone 3 years Obama’s junior, with significantly less experience than Obama (Obama has 8 years as an Illinois State Senator and 2 years as a U.S. Senator) as a possible Presidential replacement? Palin has no experience that shows her capable in regards to dealing foreign affairs, the defense, the threat of terrorism, or the management of the world’s largest economy. You have to wonder about his judgement and pragmatism.
Listening to the Republican spin on this is amazing. They’ve decided this was a brilliant and bold choice. To me it seems shortsighted and dangerous. I wondered how Republicans would respond in their national convention to the successful DNC. It appears now that their response is one of defiance and insult. Instead of bringing substance to the campaign with their choice for VP, they’ve decided to counter program with a choice based on visual and emotional appeal as opposed to policy expertise.
I thought Mitt Romney would have been a big mistake of a choice – since that would have put two multi-millionaires at the top of their ticket, but that would have made much more sense than this.