Friday, August 29, 2008

A Trophy Vice President

Update: Lowell has up an excellent summation of everything wrong and dumb about choosing Palin.

And even funnier is
this from Mason Conservative yesterday:
The most important part of it is that John McCain has resisted using Democrat-style identity politics in his choice. In Tim Pawlenty, it appears he has put ability and comfort ahead of pandering to a carved out group of people.
Poor Chris. Of course, he'll get on board and be the most enthusiastic cheerleader possible for Palin. But the truth is McCain played identity politics writ large and pandered to the Christian Right. Some maverick he is

Sarah Palin is such a poor choice for vice president that I'm sitting here stunned. If this election is a referendum on experience and judgment, McCain's campaign now fails at both. He's handed the election to the Democrats and it's theirs to lose.

First, if John McCain wanted to make Barack Obama's supposed inexperience the centerpiece of his campaign, picking Palin undercuts his message.

There are many reasons why a candidate picks a particular individual to be his ticket mate. Balancing the ticket and attracting votes are obviously the most important reasons. But at least in theory, a candidate picks somebody to be vice president because he believes that particular person can step into the office at a moment's notice should the unthinkable happen. Indeed, the very reason we have a vice presidency is to have somebody ready at the helm should the president become incapacitated.

So, McCain thinks Sarah Palin would be ready to step into the office and fill the shoes of the president should a terrible tragedy occur? What does that actually say about his judgment?

It says that his campaign advisors are still deluding themselves that they can get Hillary's PUMAs. The truth is those few holdouts could be had without this bad choice.

Many of Hillary Clinton's supporters are middle aged and older women who have spent a lifetime being passed over for the younger and less qualified for jobs and promotions and they've witnessed their friends dumped for trophy wives. Indeed, this pick will reinforce their suspicions that McCain has a propensity for trophy cuties - Cindy, Vicky Iseman, etc. Further, they will feel patronized that the McCain campaign thinks that an ultra conservative who is staunchly anti-abortion will appeal to them when they are mostly pro choice. What the choice of Sarah Palin shows is that they think a woman candidate - any woman candidate - is supposed to appeal to the Woman Vote because we really are dumb and don't understand substance and policy. That makes this a patronizing decision vis a vis the Woman Vote.

Sarah Palin is the female Dan Quayle. George H.W. Bush chose him to appeal to a younger generation and because Quayle was handsome. Bush still managed to win the election, of course, but not because of Quayle - probably in spite of him and because Bush was still riding the coattails of the enormously popular Ronald Reagan. And Michael Dukakis in an army tank and helmet was no match for Lee Atwater and Willie Horton.

McCain and Palin probably won't have such good luck. I think they both can put their heads between their knees and kiss their candidacies good bye.

1 comment:

JTylerBallance said...

In Alaska she is known as a snotty, vindictive egotist who used her earliest opportunity to abuse her power as Governor.

As soon as the Press discovers how Palin abused her power as Governor to try to destroy her State-Trooper ex-brother-in-law, McCain can kiss the fifty percent of Men, those who have gone through a divorce, good-bye!

I just removed the McCain stickers from the back of my cars.