Monday, September 1, 2008

Palin - Great Political Timing

We now know who all of the players are. Either way, history will be made.
With a 24-hour news cycle and a camera on what was believed to be all potential prospects for vice-president, Sen. John McCain pulled the trigger on Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin as his running mate. The move is being hailed as one of the most surprising in recent political history.
So far, the move can also be hailed as one of the most successful.
According to the polls, the Obama-Biden ticket received no bounce from the Democratic National Convention. Estimates last Thursday evening put an expected bounce at between 10 and 15 percentage points. However, the announcement of Palin less than 12 hours after a historic speech by Obama, resulted in virtually no bounce for the ticket.
"The convention and particularly Obama's speech seems to be well-received," says CNN Polling Director Keating Holland. "And the selection of Sarah Palin as the GOP running mate, also seems to be well-received. So why is the race still a virtual tie? Probably because the two events created equal and opposite bounces assuming that either one created a bounce at all."
Truth is, the move by the McCain campaign improves his shot at the White House ... by a ton.
Friday morning, pundits were busy telling the world it would take a major mistake by Obama in order for McCain to have a chance. By noon Friday, all bets were off and the focus turned from Obama's speech in front 80,000 party loyalists and a huge world-wide audience to Palin and her acceptance speech.
Over the weekend, much was made of the Palin selection and several made the claim that is was nothing more than a political ploy and would not have happened had Obama selected Hillary Clinton.
Had Obama picked Clinton, would that not have been a political ploy as well? In other words, the entire process is a political ploy. You pick your VP candidate to give yourself the best shot at winning.
But did he?
Now comes the news that Palin's 17-year-old daughter Bristol is pregnant and she will marry the father. How do both camps respond to this?
Palin preaches abstinence and is staunch in her pro-life conviction. After all, she gave birth to a baby with Down Syndrome and knew about it well before giving birth. But, her preaching of abstinence has backfired in her own backyard.
Frankly, the media needs to stay away from the daughter. Nothing is more sickening than going after the children of candidates. By all means, let the candidates have it, but keep away from the kids.
It may not happen, but it would be refreshing if the race came down to merit. However, with the country seemingly split in half, the 2008 campaign will likely be a bloodbath.
With two months remaining before the election, it will be fascinating to watch the drama unfold. What ads will people respond to? What truths will be uncovered concerning the candidates? How will the debates go?
Regardless of what happens in the election, you have to admit, the timing and the selection of Palin got the GOP ticket on the map. Politically speaking, it was a stroke of genius because if nothing else, it took the focus off of Obama and kept him from jumping way out in front.
What happens now is anyone's guess.

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