Friday, August 29, 2008

Sarah Palin, McCain's VP Pick

Barak and the Democrats put on a pretty good show in Denver. Although I disagreed with the general assessment of Hillary's speech (I thought it was pretty ordinary), Bill and Joe Biden did very well and Obama himself did a good job. His speech hit some points that weren't exactly on par with his previous campaign. He talked about eliminating government programs and personal accountability and responsibility. That was new and directed at mainstream America. He came out of the convention with a 6 point lead in the polls. McCain would have to make some news to get back in the race.

Make some news he has. He didn't play it safe and pick a Romney or a Huckabee for his VP. He went all the way to Alaska and selected 44 year-old, mother of 5, Sarah Palin. just 48 hours or so earlier, many Hillary supporters had capitulated and accepted Obama as their candidate. Suddenly, they're back in play. Palin, of course, will not appeal to those for whom liberalism trumps gender, but many in the Clinton camp are more concerned with breaking that "glass ceiling" than with universal health care. The pick will also stir up a demographic that has been largely inactive to this point: Republican women. There are activists and politicians at the national level, but at the grass roots level, Republican females have been kind of a "women's auxillary". Now they have a player in the game.

It's an interesting system we have. McCain and Biden come from the dynamic of those who spend decades working on their political careers, who may someday get a shot at the big prize. Obama and Palin represent an infusion of new genes in the political pool. Nobody would have bet on Obama for a presidential nominee 5 years ago and Palin was nationally unknown until very recently. Suddenly, if McCain were to win the presidency, she could very well become the Republican heir apparent. Both campaigns are a mix of fresh faces and the old guard.

It is refreshing to know that, no matter who wins the next election, the winning streak of "two old white guys" has finally come to an end.

No comments: