Wow. This one came out of left field. Sen. McCain today chose first-term governor Sarah Palin as his Vice Presidential running mate.
The choice is problematic for McCain on a number of fronts.
- Palin is the least qualified and experienced running mate in the history of the office, having served a total of 20 months in office, and none on the national level.
- Does anyone really want Sarah Palin a heartbeat away from the Presidency should McCain become unable to serve?
- Although known as a reformer, Palin is a product of the corrupt Alaskan political machine, and is even under criminal investigation herself for abusing the power of her office.
- Can she possibly face off against Joe Biden on any issue?
- She pronounces "nuclear" like George Bush. I knew that the GOP ticket wanted to continue Bush's policies....but four more years of Bushisms too!?
- She supports Obama's energy plan, all but undercutting the one supposed strength she brings to the ticket.
Rahm Emmanuel pretty much sums it up:
"After trying to make experience the issue of this campaign, John McCain celebrated his 72nd birthday by appointing a former small town mayor and brand new Governor as his Vice Presidential nominee. Is this really who the Republican Party wants to be one heartbeat away from the Presidency? Given Sarah Palin's lack of experience on every front and on nearly every issue, this Vice Presidential pick doesn't show judgement: it shows political panic."
Andrew Sullivan says:
(C)ompare McCain's pick with Obama's: a man with solid foreign policy experience, six terms in Washington and real relationships with leaders across the globe.
One pick is by a man of judgment; the other is by a man of vanity.
She may be a fine person, but she's my age, she has zero Washington experience, and no foreign policy expertise whatsoever.
McCain has just told us how seriously he takes the war we are in. Not seriously at all.
MSNBC has a good pro/con rundown.
Some reax from around the blogosphere:
Kos sees McCain abandoning the "experience" line of attack and banking on the religious right to drag him across the finish line.
Perr sees it as a pander that puts the age issue front and center and eliminates the "experience" attack.
Marc Ambinder notes Palin's, um, light resumé on national security.
Benen says it reeks of desperation.
The Public Campaign Action fund writes: Palin Pick Underscores McCain’s Loss of Maverick Reformer Credentials
Jonathan Singer sees Palin as Spiro Agnew.