I’ve had another day to think about it, and I’m still overjoyed and bewildered. Many on the right are saying that we Liberals are “pissed” at Johnny McCain’s choice of a running mate. In my case, that could not be further from the truth. I’m actually quite pleased with it. If anything could have guaranteed an Obama victory on November 4th, this would have been it.
Yet, at the same time, I have to confess to being just a little bewildered. Why would Johnny McCain throw away his shot at the presidency (something he has lusted after for so long) like this? My initial thought was that it was a gimmick to get Hillary Clinton’s die-hard supporters more firmly in his column. However, Sarah Palin and Hillary Clinton could not be further apart… both politically and philosophically. There is nothing in Sarah Palin that would make a Clinton supporter want to vote for her other than possibly her gender. That may win over a few, but I don’t think it will be nearly enough to hand Sen. McCain the presidency.
Was it a play for the evangelicals? Possibly. It’s no secret that the “religious” right wing of the Republican party has little use for Johnny McCain. This may have been his attempt at bringing them into his fold. Ms. Palin is reportedly quite religious, she loves guns, hates gays, and is anti-choice.
I’m going to step aside now for a moment and turn things over to Paul Begala, a staunch supporter of the Clintons…
Commentary: Is McCain out of his mind?
(CNN) — John McCain needs what Kinky Friedman calls “a checkup from the neck up.”
In choosing Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin to be his running mate, he is not thinking “outside the box,” as some have said. More like out of his mind.
Palin a first-term governor of a state with more reindeer than people, will have to put on a few pounds just to be a lightweight. Her personal story is impressive: former fisherman, mother of five. But that hardly qualifies her to be a heartbeat away from the presidency.
For a man who is 72 years old and has had four bouts with cancer to have chosen someone so completely unqualified to become president is shockingly irresponsible. Suddenly, McCain’s age and health become central issues in the campaign, as does his judgment.
In choosing this featherweight, McCain passed over Tom Ridge, a decorated combat hero, a Cabinet secretary and the former two-term governor of the large, complex state of Pennsylvania.
He passed over Mitt Romney, who ran a big state, Massachusetts; a big company, Bain Capital; and a big event, the Olympics.
He passed over Kay Bailey Hutchison, the Texas senator who is knowledgeable about the military, good on television and — obviously — a woman.
He passed over Joe Lieberman, his best friend in the Senate and fellow Iraq Kool-Aid drinker.
He passed over former congressman, trade negotiator and budget director Rob Portman.
And he also passed over Mike Huckabee, the governor of Arkansas.
For months, the McCainiacs have said they will run on his judgment and experience. In his first presidential decision, John McCain has shown that he is willing to endanger his country, potentially leaving it in the hands of someone who simply has no business being a heartbeat away from the most powerful, complicated, difficult job in human history.
Nothing could possibly have brought more into question Johnny McCain’s judgment that his choice of a running mate. In making the choice he did, he clearly demonstrated that he places politics before country. This man, of advanced age and questionable health, has chosen to place a woman with no qualifications whatsoever to be president within a 72-year-old heartbeat of the presidency. This is not the kind of judgment we need in a president. Not now. Definitely not now.
No, I’m not upset at Johnny McCain’s choice of Sarah Palin. I’m quite pleased with it, because it goes a long way toward ensuring that our next president will be the president we need: Barack Obama.
See also: “McCain’s Baked Alaska.”