Sarah who? as running mate

Once Obama choose as his running mate someone who complemented him — Biden has truckloads of experience in government and foreign policy — McCain’s choices narrowed. The word is that he made a hurried decision, meeting his last-minute choice Sarah Palin for the first time only yesterday.

He’s done the obvious thing and chosen a woman as his running mate. One who underlines his “reformer” narrative (however hollow that is in 2008). As Governor of Alaska, Sarah Palin has been an energetic reformer, eschewing “business as usual” politics. She also ticks all the conservative boxes. A clever choice in many ways.

Clearly, McCain’s camp thinks that Palin, a mother of five, will appeal to women voters, especially the Hillary fanatics who are so grieved that they are willing to jettison things like abortion rights. But she’s nothing like Hillary Clinton. One of them has extensive experience in government at national level and the other doesn’t even know what the Vice President does. One of them is pro-abortion and the other anti. Will women fall for this? Hope not.

Palin’s hugely popular in Alaska, so much so that she will probably deliver her home state to McCain, something that not many VP candidates actually manage to do. It’s not many electoral college votes (3), but it was a factor in Obama’s “Many roads to the White House” strategy. Obama has been very competitive in the GOP stronghold state.

(Note that the senate and house races are another matter, with both of the Republican incumbents mired in scandal.)

Not that they count for that much, but the Veep candidates’ debates should be fun. Biden should have Palin for breakfast when it comes to foreign policy and national-level issues. And some are already asking whether she’s ready to be Commander-in-Chief, should McCain, now 72 years old and a cancer survivor, not complete his term.

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