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Nothing to Spit At

John Nance Garner, the No. 2 to President Franklin Delano Roosevelt, once derided the vice presidency as not being worth "a warm bucket of spit." Not anymore. The pendulum has swung from a sit-in-the-corner-and-don't-make-trouble vice president like Dan Quayle under President George H.W. Bush; through the earnest, let-me-reform-government tenure of Al Gore; to the powerful second-in-command we have in Dick Cheney. Given the multitude of problems facing the country (two wars, an economy in meltdown, a warming planet and rising debt) the next vice president shouldn't be perceived to have control over the rudder of the ship of state like Cheney. But that person must also be someone who can help the president govern.

Sen. John McCain wants us to believe that person is Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin. I'm not buyin' it. Much has been made about her bubbly, gun-toting, "hockey mom," every-woman persona. And about how she's struck a work-life balance with a 670,000-person state, five kids and a "First Dude" to attend to. But she doesn't raise confidence about being part of a West Wing dynamic duo that can address the nation's overflowing inbox of problems. Palin doesn't rise to that level just yet for me.

The ticket of Sens. Barack Obama and Joe Biden does.

Biden has knowledge of the workings of the Capitol that would be effective in helping a President Obama move vital legislation -- especially through the cantankerous Senate, where good legislation goes to die for want of 60 votes. Palin's reform/maverick nature made her very popular in Alaska. She's certainly shown no fear in challenging her party, past political patrons and established power centers. I'm just not sure how effective skills learned on such a small stage would be in Washington, or how useful they would be for McCain. Palin might not be as inconsequential as Quayle, but there are few signs that she would be as relevant as Vice President Gore.

By Jonathan Capehart  | September 1, 2008; 6:58 PM ET
Categories:  Capehart  | Tags:  Jonathan Capehart  
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How can you call a politician who abused their power, in the troopergate scandal, as Governor a reformer?

How can you call a politician who supported the Bridge to Nowhere, and ran Ted Stevens' 527, a reformer?

I know it's labor day weekend, but c'mon man. If you were Sen. McCain and this were the New York Times this piece would have been handed back to you.

Posted by: Deep Blue | September 1, 2008 7:26 PM | Report abuse

Here comes the drumbeat of troopergate. You democrats are so predictable. Who is more corrupt? Obama who came through the rank of arguably the most corrupt political machine, the Chicago's Democratic machine without making a peep or Palin who took on her own party's corrupt machine in Alaska and passed a bunch of reforms?

Posted by: Shamba | September 1, 2008 7:41 PM | Report abuse

I would agree that the maverick/reformer tag does not fly. She was apparently Ted Stevens' protege, and she was for the Bridge to Nowhere before she was against it.

Posted by: Berliner2 | September 1, 2008 7:42 PM | Report abuse

Sarah Palins' choice for VP was absolutely horrifying. I am an Australian and we australians expect more, much more, from american leadership. Now Obama/Biden, that's for us.

Posted by: susanai56 | September 1, 2008 7:45 PM | Report abuse

Sarah Palin was certainly for Abstinence only education, that is, before she was against it!

Posted by: Mike | September 1, 2008 7:45 PM | Report abuse

The most important issue surrounding the Palin pick is John McCain's lack of concern for the welfare of this nation. There is no reasonable matrix under which Sara Palin can be considered ready to serve as President of the United States, not only in these times which are challenging to say the least, but at any time. This pick is purely political - period. The selection calls into question John McCain's oft quoted claim that he puts America first. He sure didn't in this case.

Posted by: clw743 | September 1, 2008 7:55 PM | Report abuse

To say that the Chicago political machine is more corrupt than the machines in Boston, New York City, Newark, Philadelphia, Arizona, Texas, or Louisiana, etc. is to drink the Karl Rove kool-aid.

Boston had one Bulger running the state senate while another Bulger was running the Irish mafia. New York Queens democrats have had their own allegations of Italian mafia connections (see Ferraro et. al). And there is a great deal of research suggesting that Sen McCain himself married into an organized crime family in Arizona.

But enough of the personal attacks. The question is who is going to stop the corrupt elite from using lobbyists to rig the system for the wealthy, at the expense of the middle and lower classes. The housing crisis, which was caused by financial lobbyists spending many millions to get Glass-Steagall repealed, and which threatens to take down the worldwide financial system, is just the latest example of corruption. Finance bigwigs made huge profits, huge salaries and bonuses, and now that their hair-brained schemes are blowing up they want taxpayers to bail them out.

It's BS. Iran-Contra. Savings & Loan. Enron. The Sub-prime Mortgage scandal. Enough is enough! Republicans cannot be trusted.

The political discourse in this country has been dumbed down to the point that people don't even know when they are being robbed any more.

Democrats was peace, prosperity, health care, education, energy independence and a clean environment. How on God's green earth is that a bad thing? Why is wanting our next generation to be educated enough in science and technology (so that they don't get their lunch eaten by the Chinese) a bad (or socialist) thing? Why is life sacred at conception, but unimportant enough to be shipped off to a lie of a war at 18?

Posted by: Deep Blue | September 1, 2008 8:23 PM | Report abuse

Even if you like mccain, which I do...there is no way to spin this except that she was choosen for political reasons and the two central themes behind mccain's campaign is Country first and Experience to lead...she has neither. John Mccain is making it tuff for me to support him.

Posted by: scott | September 1, 2008 8:58 PM | Report abuse

Well said Mr. Capehart. This shows what a poor decision maker mccain truly is. This is how he would run his administration - flyin' by the seat of his pants, trailin' the whole country behind him. This was and irresponsible pick because Palin is totally unqualified. I'm actually insulted that McCain would think he could shove this poor excuse of a candidate down our throats. He's not gettin' my vote. Obama-Biden have shown what it is to be ready for office. Palin leans way too far to the right - her views on abortion are offensive and too far out of the mainstream. He'll lose more women than he'll gain with this pick. It's insulting to women that he would choose such an inferior candidate. But he wanted a woman on the ticket - too bad he selected "any" woman.

Posted by: cj | September 1, 2008 9:16 PM | Report abuse

McCain's reckless pick of Palin made my head want to explode.

We will soon see how gullible Americans are, how susceptible to Republican spin they are. (They count her time on the Wasilla city council and on the PTA as her political "experience", and Alaska's geographical proximity to Russia, for cryin' out loud.)

If the McCain camp is able to convince Americans that Palin, who has zero foreign policy cred, is capable of stepping into the presidency should something happen to a 72 year old McCain, it will be proof that Americans are willing to swallow just about anything. And America will get the inept administration they deserve.

Posted by: jdiane | September 1, 2008 9:20 PM | Report abuse

John McCain is no longer in charge of his campaign.

Posted by: sheldon | September 1, 2008 9:28 PM | Report abuse

Gov. Palin, will be out of the race once the McCain camp completes the retroactive vetting!

Posted by: Anonymous | September 1, 2008 9:30 PM | Report abuse

Oh ironies upon ironies galore in these responses. First, I can see many people see McCain's coice of Palin to be entirely political, It is entirely silly to make this argument without thinking of Sen. Obama's choice of Joe Biden. That pick was just as political if not more. Obama needs white working class voters and Catholics desperately and Biden was the top choice to help him with that. It needs to be realized that almost every VP that has been picked has been for political reasons. Thats how elections are won. Candidates would have there way with who they would work with if the could, but political realities keep them from preventing it. Of course McCain wants to get a share of the womens vote. What is strange is how there has been no real offesnse to sen. Obama's obvious outreach to white working class voters. VPs are meant to either a)help reinforce a candidates message or b) make up for perceived weaknesses in a candidate. Sen. Obama's selection makes it wildly clear that he is trying to solve his problems with the working class while McCain's choice is to reinforce his message of Washington reform by wisely choosing an outsider.

Posted by: Trueblue | September 1, 2008 9:35 PM | Report abuse

Shhhhhhh......whatever you do don't speak a word! We must not say anything about this because we've told we shouldn't. Why should it concern us anyway? After all this person who is running for VP could be the next President soon if the Republicans are elected in November. But....we should never ever mention anything about this subject matter because it involves a young teenage girl and she is pregnant and should have her privacy and we have no right to know anything or to say anything about this very extremely delicate issue!

Uhhh.......okay, but gosh! I mean, I thought that Governor Palin was a pro-lifer and against birth control and for abstinance. I'm confused here. Will someone please help me understand this?'s where I'm hung up. Does Palin think that it's just okay to engage in pre-marital sex at such a young age, without the protection of contraceptives? I mean...shouldn't I, as a voter, know how she feels about things like this? It seems reasonable to me to ask vital questions like this, especially in lieu of this latest development. Why is it that I have this nagging feeling in my gut that says to me that Governor Palin is somewhat irresponsible and probably not the greatest parent around? Could it be the way she handled her own pregnancy? Assuming she was indeed the one who was pregnant. After all, there are rumours to the contrary and this latest announcement doesn't really nullify those rumours. In a way it makes them appear somehow more plausible.

Am I condemning anyone here for this 'situation'? No, I really am not. I'm not condemning Palin or her daughter in the slightest. We are all humans and we all make mistakes. Some of us get caught and some of us don't. But basically what happens to us is because of the way we are raised and that's a fact. It seriously is a fact.

Psssssttttt.....don't tell anyone but I had a child out of wedlock when I was a teenager too. This is not a secret as I had it on my radio website and also spoke of it often on my radio talk show in which I spoke of True Love. I shared this information with my listeners and my fans not to make them think it was okay, but to let them know the truth and to help them to understand the consequences of what can happen when we don't follow the rules of society. I encouraged them not to be promiscuous ever. Now I'm not saying that I was promiscuous because I wasn't and I'm also not saying that Bristol was promiscuous. I have no idea what her sexual behaviour was like. But I will say this. I feel that I can blame my parents for what happened to me. Oh it was really my fault. Ultimately the fault was my own. I knew better. I really did! But the biggest reason I got pregnant was because the opportunity was there and the need to be loved. I had no supervision at that crucial time in my life and my parents were too busy with their own lives and work to wonder or even ask what was going on in my young life. I didn't have that "Leave it to Beaver" or "Father Knows Best" upbringing. Okay, most kids don't these days but the lack of moral values in our society today is not only shocking, it is alarming!

As for my own pregnancy, I chose to not have it terminated as well and was 'sent off' to a home for unwed mothers. My family didn't want me to marry the boy, who was too young to earn a living or to be a good father. The decision was reached by all concerned, including the boy's parents, that I would give the baby up for adoption. I felt at the time it was a good decision, even though it saddened me deeply. Unfortunately, when my baby was born it had an abnormality that would be fatal, within two weeks. When they informed me of his condition it was the most horrible news of my life. It was the first time I knew what depression was like.

The baby died and I went on with my life but I can assure you that it had a profound impact on how I would feel about this subject matter, birth control, teen pregnancy and family values for the rest of my life.

After I married later on (not pregnant I will add) I had two beautiful daughters. I began to teach them sexual responsibility at an early age, always encouraging them to use abstinance but knowing that there was a probability they would not, once they reached a certain age. At this age I arranged for my physician to give me birth control pills for them and when they reached the age of 15 I told them where the pills were and told them that if they ever felt the need to use them that I would prefer for them to do that than risk becoming pregnant. I in no way encouraged them to have sex prematurely or without being married but I wanted to do what I felt was the responsible thing. I told both my daughters that they could either tell me they were taking the pills or not tell me, but that I would prefer if they did. Now, to protect my daughter's privacy as I'm not running for public office, much less the Vice Presidency of the United States, I will not reveal if they chose to take them or not. I am only saying what I did. Neither of my daughter ever experienced what I did. The shame and the guilt and the experience of having a child out of wedlock and then the horror of having that child die. Another thing is this. I was there for them! And I was employed at the time as well. But I still was with my children and saw to their emotional needs as much as any parent I have ever known of.

I have no ill feelings toward Governor Palin and certainly none for her daughter, Bristol. I don't know if there is any basis for the rumours that the child known as Trig could also be the child of Bristol and as I have posted here before it would be of importance here in that if it was proven to be true it would also prove that she was involved in a lie and a cover-up and this would not be acceptable for the person who could conceivably be our next President one day.

What I think should happen here is that Governor Palin should quietly back out of this race for the Vice President and should go back to Alaska and take care of her family.

I think we, the American people, deserve a Vice President who is more responsible and more accountable and who will not threaten to take away the rights of women everywhere to use birth control as a means of contraception and also who would threaten to have Roe vs Wade struck down.

In ending let me also say this: God bless little Trig and God Bless young Bristol and the child she is carrying.

In fact I will go a step farther in saying "God bless the Palin family." But at the same time I call for her to suspend her campaign as running mate of John McCain's in the unfortunate event that they just might get elected in the fall.

If the last eight years haven't taught us something then we are impossible to educate.

We simply must insist on absolute honesty and accountability in our elected officials and their conduct. And because of the issues this candidate represents it makes this of vital importance to each and every voter. When you run for Vice President of the United States you basically give up your privacy.

It's really just that simple!

~ Jazziette

Posted by: Jazziette | September 1, 2008 9:37 PM | Report abuse

and how does the obama-biden ticket make you feel as though they are a dynamic duo? biden completely negates obamas message of change in washington.

Posted by: starling | September 1, 2008 9:39 PM | Report abuse

OK, Obamabot MORONS (including you Capehart), go for it! Fresh meat to get your nasty fangs into.

Posted by: Anonymous | September 1, 2008 9:41 PM | Report abuse

All right is anyone going to ask about her membership in the fringe Alaskan Independence Party? Motto "Alaska First ... Alaska Always"?

Jake Tapper of ABC just confirmed the story.

A party that wanted to cede from the Union? C'mon McCain - did you even vet her at all?

Posted by: Anonymous | September 1, 2008 9:41 PM | Report abuse


Thank GOD you can't vote in OUR election! MYOB!

Posted by: skeptic | September 1, 2008 9:42 PM | Report abuse

Sarah Palin is young, pretty and dynamic. McCain is......well.......McCain. He looks pretty pale and boring next to this young and lively woman as he enters the nightclub with her on his arm. Really sad. No fool like an old fool.
Women of accomplishment of my acquaintence are "Insulted." The Republican commentators seem bewildered by this reaction. Really. Well....Duh!

Posted by: Philip Taugher | September 1, 2008 9:42 PM | Report abuse

Also, Sarah Palin and her husband were members of The Alaskan Independence Party, a fringe party pushing for Alaska to secede from the US, ABC News reports.
Sarah’s husband, Todd, was arrested and charged with drunk driving in 1986, CNN reports. Palin says she opposes the abuses of earmark spending, but under her leadership, Alaska has requested 31 earmarks worth $197.8 million in the 2009 budget, the LA Times reports. What next??

Posted by: J Michael | September 1, 2008 9:58 PM | Report abuse

Someone told me that Palin is a Creationist, believes creationism should be taught in schools alongside evoloution, and even believe the world is only 7000 years old, or some such nonesense. Can anyone confirm this, or provide a link to credible sources on this matter, one way or the other? Thanks

Posted by: Dan | September 1, 2008 9:59 PM | Report abuse

"Country First" is the theme of McCain's convention but with Palin a member of a Alaska sesessionist group which country are they putting fist? The Republicans did say she knows Russia that is only 300 miles away which is much closer than the USA.

Posted by: Henry | September 1, 2008 10:05 PM | Report abuse

Palin is a Tennessee Scopes trial Taliban.

It is one thing to choose to bear a Down's syndrome child.
It is one thing to have a daughter who is 17 who does not use contraceptives while being sexually active.

It is quite another to appoint judges based on those choices being the requirement for all of society, just because you are convinced by your cultural upbringing that those choices are DIVINELY inspired. I beg to differ.I have the right to read and on that basis I observe www.pocm.INFO that all of Christianity is based on myths that were taught to Greeks and Romans and that present folks have not had the benefit of a good education so they choose to ignore the archeology that could put the facts in their faces. BUT PLEASE STOP THE PRETENSE THAT SHE HAS THE RIGHT TO CHOOSE THE JUDGES FOR THE USA based on her religion. NO! IMO: Her religion is a false teaching. If it were a right and true teaching and the dinosaurs never roamed the earth, it would still be inappropriate to force us to go by her point of view. She is not a scientist. She is not an attorney.
She is a creationist. This is not 1927 in Tennessee.
We should not be voting on whether the earth was created 5,000 years ago, but we ARE!!! She 'believes' that the Bible says the world was created 5,000 years ago. That belief then implies that there was no pleistocene ago 65 million years ago, and that belief implies there cannot be global warming BECAUSE THERE WAS NO ICE AGE, so we can ignore science as speculationor even as anti-Christian propaganda. REGISTER AND VOTE AND END THE REPRESSION OF THE BUSH-fundamentalist regime now. Dont let this person take office. We would have 12 or 16 years of ignorance in science governing global warming.

Posted by: Bruce Becker | September 1, 2008 10:18 PM | Report abuse

It is just more of the same for Republicans. They appoint political hacks without real experience to run the reconstruction of Iraq, and billions of dollars are lost or wasted. They appoint political hacks to run the Justice Department, and they politicize what should be a non-political government agency.

Now they appoint a VP candidate intended to garner votes from women and evangelicals, without a thought to her qualifications. There are many qualified female Republicans out there, they skipped over those to appoint Palin.

She is the most under qualified VP nominee in modern history. Obama is a Harvard law graduate who ran the Harvard Law Review and taught constitutional law at one of the nations top law schools for a dozen years. Palin attended 3 schools before graduating with a degree in journalism from the University of Idaho.

She was the mayor of a small town before becoming governor of a very small state (population less than Obama's congressional district) 20 months ago.

I, for one, want a President and Vice President to be smart, educated, and wise. Palin does not exhibit these traits.

Posted by: Ohio | September 1, 2008 10:21 PM | Report abuse

Palin is not an expert on Russia just because it is close to Alaska, any more than the county supervisor of Broward county in Florida is an expert on Cuban affairs or the mayor of Dallas is an expert on Mexico. It is just not true.
She doesnt know ANYTHING about Russia.

Posted by: Bruce Becker | September 1, 2008 10:24 PM | Report abuse

Alaska First, an organization which Palin belongs to, which wants to have Alaska leave the union and be a country.

Palin sounds like the treasonous Aaron Burr.
PALIN sez I want my own country where the Bible is the Constitution.

Fine, let her go, but dont let her run the USA into the ground by her Tennessee Taliban tactics. She wants creationism taught in the schools, like in Tennessee, to win the Scopes trial and deny that global warming is happening, because there never was an ice age or anything older than the Bible.

Posted by: Bruce Becker | September 1, 2008 10:48 PM | Report abuse

To make this as Clear as I can:
When they announced that the choice for;
would be a shock, I thought of the Secretary of State,
Condoleezza Rice.
A good shock!
As a person from another country
this selection makes no sense.

Posted by: Paul Erwin | September 1, 2008 10:54 PM | Report abuse

Palin is not fit to be the governor of Alaska and dawn sure is not fit to be VP. McCain is an old fool who should not even be representing his state as a senator.

How dare he try to insult women with this poor choice?

Palin is a selfish, egotistical fool who is putting her ambitions above her family. How dare she think she can govern this country? She can't run her own household. What a pathetic mother and poor excuse for a human being to make her kids take care of her baby while she plays the role of a politician?

McCain is not ready to lead. He needs to take his poor excuse of a "hail mary prayer" VP and leave the country.

Country First! Please. Do not insult the citizens of the U.S.

If Obama were a white man, he would be up by 30 points in the poll over McCain. What a racist country the USA is? When will people learn that racism will catch up them everytime?

Posted by: Marie | September 1, 2008 11:04 PM | Report abuse

Yea for Sarah Palin!!! It's time we had a woman on the ticket. I felt slighted when Obama picked Biden as his VP. He is for change, but he picked an old Washington insider. He talks one thing and does another. Sarah will break the 'glass ceiling.' Let us vote for McCain and Palin. It's time for change--the right change. We don't want a Muslin to lead our nation. It's time for a woman in Washington. Hurrah for Mccain and Palin

Posted by: Kathy | September 1, 2008 11:15 PM | Report abuse

Here's hoping that Kathy post was a joke.

Posted by: Jay | September 1, 2008 11:28 PM | Report abuse

Kathy you liar, Obama is not a muslim.
However your candidate Palin is the Taliban, wanting to force her ideas about religion into law.

Posted by: Anonymous | September 1, 2008 11:31 PM | Report abuse

You wrote: Palin is a selfish, egotistical fool who is putting her ambitions above her family. How dare she think she can govern this country? She can't run her own household. What a pathetic mother and poor excuse for a human being to make her kids take care of her baby while she plays the role of a politician?

Answer: she has been a member of a group (ALASKA FIRST) that is attempting to succeed Alaska from of the union of united states and form their OWN COUNTRY with a constitution based on the her ideas about the literal Bible.

Posted by: Bruce Becker | September 1, 2008 11:35 PM | Report abuse

Answer: PALIN has been a supporter of a group (ALASKA FIRST) that is attempting to secede (Alaska) from of the union of United States and form their OWN COUNTRY with a constitution based on the her ideas about the literal Bible.

Look at the proposed constitution for "her" country of Alaska.
That's what she will do to the USA constitution if she appoints federal judges. Think in terms of her being president for 8, or if McCain dies in office in his second term, her being president for 10 years, from age 50 to age 59, and implementing the constitution of Alaska First in the USA constitution by appointing 100's of federal judges during her reign.

Posted by: Anonymous | September 1, 2008 11:41 PM | Report abuse

Thank you Capehart for calling out the republican party for their contradictory statements. Obama has more executive experience in the management of his campaign not to mention his political experience. These blow hards need to give it a rest and realize that we have been edjumakatin ourselves. We actually do have brains and we use them. Thank you for the much needed improvements in the school systems over the past 100 years. We can read and we do think....McCain is an old fool just trying to have a little fun with his two beauty queens by his side. What a joke!

Posted by: Sue | September 1, 2008 11:55 PM | Report abuse

Um, Democrats controlled Congress when the RTC was created to bail out the S&L mess; Democrats are currently in control of the House and have a filibuster proof position in the Senate and yet there are plans afoot to bail out the banks by supposedly protecting those most in need, the people who borrowed what the couldn't afford to pay back. The only difference between the parties is on the fringes, and they are on the fringe for a reason: they care about their constituents. Is it not the epitome of trading influence for personal gain to leave the White House as an adviser/speech writer and end up working for an investment bank for three years and make over $16 million. No prior experience in banking much less investment banking? A plaque on all their houses...

Posted by: Mortakye | September 2, 2008 12:03 AM | Report abuse

I wonder what would happen if Bristol Palin wanted to have an abortion?

Posted by: don06 | September 2, 2008 12:10 AM | Report abuse

If it turns out that Palin was a member of the AIP, she should resign as a VP candidate.

Anyone who joins an organization that supports a state seceding from the United States disqualifies himself (herself) from seeking the vice presidency.

Posted by: MS | September 2, 2008 12:26 AM | Report abuse

Let me take a wild guess here, considering your analysis is so in depth and insightful.

The "bubbly hockey mom" as you kindly referred to, Palin, has had executive positions in managing, governing, leading people as mayor and governor of Alaska (the largest in the Union and with international borders) since 1992. Where was Obama in 1992?

Palin has been governor of Alaska for 2 years so far. Obama has been a senator for what, 3 years? And out of those 3 years he's spent the last 2 campaigning. Showing up for votes and making speeches doesn't quite qualify one for an executive position leading the country. Has Obama lead a town? A state? A company? Has he governed anything or anyone? Nope. Zilch Nada. He's greener than Palin in comparison.

But the zinger is this: while Palin may not be a seasoned politician, she's #2 on the ballot. Obama, less seasoned than Palin is #1 on the ballot.

I'll take my chance with Palin. She's by far more qualified than McCain, Obama, and Biden to run this country...afterall, she's been busy running Alaska and taking on the corruption of the crooked politicans in her OWN party! When has Obama stood up to anyone in HIS party? Heck, he can't even stand up to the Anti-American, Un-Patriotic Pastor Wright, and the Pentagon bombing, Flag burning Ayers.

There's a wise saying that we should not forget: tell me who your friends are, and I'll tell you who you are. Obama has made it clear who his friends are: anti-American criminals.

And hey dude! You think managing one's political campaign gives Obama the experience he needs to run the country? Are you on drugs or just naturally stupid??

And Bruce Becker: You are a crotch for putting down a hard working mother. Can I say: Vagina Envy?? Are you so insecure in your little manhood that you have to put down a hard working woman? Punk. What a scumbag thing to say.

Be prepared come November. You WILL have a female President, and she'll be the best thing that ever happened to this country. And all your small crotchity men out there, I hope your little pricks fall off in envy of a successful, smart, beautiful and strong woman!!

Posted by: John | September 2, 2008 12:55 AM | Report abuse

It isn't that it's a political choice, but a poor choice that's the problem. My favorite part of watching all the republicans is the vocal outcry against the "personal" attacks of Palin's past which somehow they see as uniquely different from what they have been slinging toward Senator Obama. Hypocracy - shocking coming from the republicans.

Except that it is uniquely different in that many of the criticisms against Palin and McCain are based on their behavior as public officials - ummmm Keating Five anyone? That's right, McCain found someone like him who's willing to use the power of public office to progress personal agendas.

BTW - if the pregnant daughter is being homeschooled - who's doing the schooling? Is the teenage daughter simply being left alone all day long supposedly doing her homework? What?!?

Posted by: Maureen | September 2, 2008 1:01 AM | Report abuse

Sarah Palin did not confront Alaska corruption. The U.S. Justice Department -- Bush's Justice Department, to boot -- confronted corruption.
I have spent nearly all my life in Alaska and have known Sarah Palin for a long time. I like her personally, but this idea that she is some kind of reformer who took on the power structure is totally bogus. She was a creature of that power structure, promoted by the likes of Frank Murkowski and Randy Ruedrich when it suited her. And she turned against them when the time was right. Her popularity in Alaska has a lot to do with the fact that the state is currently overflowing with oil money, thanks to high oil prices, so everybody's getting all kinds of goodies, such as the $1,200 check coming our way in days.
Now, the AIP connection is just rich! It's an only-in-Alaska thing.

Posted by: alaskan | September 2, 2008 1:04 AM | Report abuse

Palin's executive experience? Give me a break. She was mayor of Wasilla! The important local government decisions for Wasilla are made at the Mat-Su Borough level, not at the Wasilla city level. Mayor/manager is kind of a part-time job.
International experience? Negotiating a salmon treaty with Canada? Oh, come on!
The deal is that she's actually been a very hands-off governor, and has, thankfully, some pretty good staffers running things, in cooperation with a fairly pragmatic and hard-working legislature. Palin has been a figurehead governor.

Posted by: alaskan | September 2, 2008 1:09 AM | Report abuse

I completely agree with your take on Gov. Palin selection to be the next VP of the country. However, this isn't about Gov. Palin, this is about Sen. McCain and his complete and utter contempt for government. This is Republican philosophy on crack cocaine. Truly disappointing!

Posted by: Horace Beasley | September 2, 2008 1:30 AM | Report abuse

This Guy Capehart is BIASED to the Max, Period.

Posted by: Fred | September 2, 2008 1:49 AM | Report abuse

This Guy Capehart is BIASED to the Max, Period.

Posted by: Fred | September 2, 2008 1:50 AM | Report abuse


You sound a little angry....maybe even jealous of Governor Palin. I think many in Alaska would disagree with your statements about what she has and hasn't done. What is her approval rating?

Maybe you would prefer another Murkowski? I know that I don't. Governor Palin has been a positive change for Alaska. She has stood up not only to unethical politicians but to big oil....something no one else seemed willing to do.

Posted by: Kathy | September 2, 2008 6:39 AM | Report abuse

What was McCain thinking???? Was he thinking???
Did these campaign people bother to contact one member of the state legislature's leadership? And I don't mean the Dems. The Republican leaders will, when they speak candidly, give you plenty of horror stories and warnings about Palin and her outsized ego and her lack of sense. Should have called the current and past House speakers, at the very least. Maybe the board of the Anchorage Chamber of Commerce.
Yes, she's gorgeous and stunning and bubbly and all that, but Palin is NOT respected by those who know her best and work with her the closest.

Posted by: sleepless in Alaska | September 2, 2008 6:40 AM | Report abuse

Another aspect of the Sarah Palin story is whether her daughter Bristol, who is now pregnant with an illegitimately conceived child, also gave birth to what has been alleged to be Sarah Palin's fifth child, Trig. Sarah didn't announce her pregnancy, even to her staff, until her supposed seventh month. There seems to be no visible or medical evidence that she was pregnant. At the same time, her daughter Bristol was absented from school for five months due to "mononucleoisis."

I don't know if this is true. But that's partly because McCain sprang this nomination on everyone. Palin is not only unknown, she is unknowable what with only two months before election.

If true, it leads one to ask what else Ms. Palin would consider important enough to fudge the facts on. An illegitimate war? Critics of one's policies? Lobbyist, banking or big oil corruption? Illegal hiring and firing practices to politicize the Justice Department? The qualifications of Supreme Court nominations? Torture?

Finally, if Ms. Palin's nomination is merely a Karl Rove campaign stunt to win a few days of headlines, like the ads of June and August, what does that say about Republicans' attitude to truth and ethics?

Posted by: GaryL1 | September 2, 2008 7:57 AM | Report abuse

Darn, and just as I thought the abstinence malarkey was working--NOT! As a teacher of teenagers for twenty years, let me assure you that the same ol' devil keeps popping up.

Posted by: James Linney | September 2, 2008 8:44 AM | Report abuse


Do you have anything thing intelligent to say? You bitter republican!

Posted by: Anonymous | September 2, 2008 8:56 AM | Report abuse

Hi I am not from the US and in a sense whoever you Americans choose as your President and VP will have no direct bearing on me.

But I truly hope that come Novemeber you all will make a wise choice and choose Obama/Biden, who are obviously, to most people overseas, a better choice. And McCain choosing Palin as a running mate is so ludicrous that it will really be a bad joke if he wins the elections in the end.

Posted by: Patrick | September 2, 2008 9:15 AM | Report abuse

Here's a reading selection for all you contraception freaks: Humanae Vitae.

Posted by: tom | September 2, 2008 9:56 AM | Report abuse

Sorry, Kathy. Alaskan is quite right. The Justice Dept investigation had been going on quite a long time before Palin became involved. It seemed like half the people in the state knew about this secret investigation the entire time. As for earmarks, she not only took the bridge money, but has snagged many thousands more for the dirty little wide spot in the road they call Wasilla.

Firing Walt Monegan? Just like shooting Dudley DoRight. How foolish and arrogant to think she could get away with burning the most respected public official the state has known for decades.

Taking on Big Oil? Nope. There are two issues involving Big Oil in Alaska that involved the Governor's office. One was choosing the strategy for getting natural gas to market from the North Slope. Two choices, an overland pipeline or tankers. The battle has gone on for a decade before Sarah and is not done yet. The other main issue is how big a share of royalties the State gets vs what the Feds get from any new discoveries and production on new Federal leases. Interestingly, the Feds believe the state should only get 10%, an 80% reduction vs what it got originally. Of course the State is taking them on over that, but that started long before Palin became governor. Oddly, even though this would be a huge windfall for the Federal government, Congress has wisely opposed tapping new holes into ANWR. But Governor Sarah, seeing far less royalty revenue still shouts "drill here, drill now."

Finally, she suffers from typical Alaska myopia. We are so far away from the rest of the United States that we frankly don't need to care much what goes on there and in the rest of the world. So we don't. And we don't waste time learning about it.

And yes, the Alaska Independence Party and Alaska First have been promoting secession from the United States for decades. You didn't know???

I could go on about Sarah but I won't. My point is the hype about her taking on corrupt government and Big Oil is crap.

Who she took on is the "tree huggers" How? By stealing $400,000 of public money and using it to lobby voters to allow airborne predator control. What does that mean? It means she sent her department biologists out to shoot brown bears who had learned not to fear humans (because they didn't hurt them) and to drag wolf puppies from their den and shoot them in the head.

But my biggest knock on Sarah is that she was either too ignorant to see McCain's motives in appointing her, what it meant about his thinking about women and the job of V.P., and where it would leave her standing with women voters. That, or she was too opportunistic to say "no, thanks" as she should have. Either one disqualifies her in my book.

Posted by: Homerhoid | September 2, 2008 10:44 AM | Report abuse

Why be surprised? "The Vice President has two responsibilities, to inquire daily about the health of the President and to attend the funerals of Third World dictators."

--- John McCain, 2000

Who says Sarah Palin is not qualified and able to meet this standard?

What more do you need to know about McCain and his choice?

Posted by: Out of the Box | September 2, 2008 12:32 PM | Report abuse

Actually, he said it wasn't worth a warm bucket of piss.

Posted by: Wrong quote | September 2, 2008 1:25 PM | Report abuse

Sarah Palin was a purely political choice for McCain since she comes from the far-right wing of the GOP. The Democrats just need to look past the fact she is a woman and make sure her radical views are known. She is even close to Bush than McCain. Any honest vetting of her record will show this.

Palin/McCain..even more of the same.

Posted by: Cal | September 2, 2008 5:40 PM | Report abuse

It is ironic to see all these Republicans claiming Obama is a radical Muslim fundamentalist...then praising the nomination of a radical Christian fundamentalist. Radical fundie is radical fundie in my book. We dont need a radical religious theocracy in America...lets leave that to Iran.

Posted by: Rick W | September 2, 2008 5:48 PM | Report abuse

McCain likes to illustrate his moral fibre by referring to his five years as a prisoner-of-war in Vietnam. And to demonstrate his commitment to family values, the 71-year-old former US Navy pilot pays warm tribute to his beautiful blonde wife, Cindy, with whom he has four children.

But there is another Mrs McCain who casts a ghostly shadow over the Senator’s presidential campaign. She is seldom seen and rarely written about, despite being mother to McCain’s three eldest children. She is McCain’s first wife, Carol, who was a famous beauty and a successful swimwear model when they married in 1965.

She was the woman McCain dreamed of during his long incarceration and torture in Vietnam’s infamous ‘Hanoi Hilton’ prison and the woman who faithfully stayed at home looking after the children and waiting anxiously for news.

But when McCain returned to America in 1973 to a fanfare of publicity and a handshake from Richard Nixon, he discovered his wife had been disfigured in a terrible car crash three years earlier. Her car had skidded on icy roads into a telegraph pole on Christmas Eve, 1969. Her pelvis and one arm were shattered by the impact and she suffered massive internal injuries.

When Carol was discharged from hospital after six months of life-saving surgery, the prognosis was bleak. In order to save her legs, surgeons had been forced to cut away huge sections of shattered bone, taking with it her tall, willowy figure. She was confined to a wheelchair and was forced to use a catheter. Through sheer hard work, Carol learned to walk again. But when John McCain came home from Vietnam, she had gained a lot of weight and bore little resemblance to her old self.

Today, she stands at just 5ft4in and still walks awkwardly, with a pronounced limp. Her body is held together by screws and metal plates and, at 70, her face is worn by wrinkles that speak of decades of silent suffering.

For nearly 30 years, Carol has maintained a dignified silence about the accident, McCain and their divorce. But last week at the bungalow where she now lives at Virginia Beach, a faded seaside resort 200 miles south of Washington, she told The Mail on Sunday how McCain divorced her in 1980 and married Cindy, 18 years his junior and the heir to an Arizona brewing fortune, just one month later.

She says. ‘My accident is well recorded. I had 23 operations, I am five inches shorter than I used to be and I was in hospital for six months. It was just awful, but it wasn’t the reason for my divorce. ‘My marriage ended because John McCain didn’t want to be 40, he wanted to be 25. You know that just does.’

Some of McCain’s acquaintances are less forgiving, however. They portray the politician as a self-centred womaniser who effectively abandoned his crippled wife to ‘play the field’. They accuse him of finally settling on Cindy, a former rodeo beauty queen, for financial reasons.

McCain was then earning little more than $40,000 a year as a naval officer, while his new father-in-law, Jim Hensley, was a multi-millionaire who had impeccable political connections.

Lets see what his vet buddies confirm about McCain the hero.

And Sarah Palin how is she going to defend the country if she can't defend her children against pedophiles?

Posted by: basementfrog | September 5, 2008 6:59 PM | Report abuse

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