Saturday, November 08, 2008

Monday morning quarterbacking

If the economy, the war, an opponent with more cash and an unpopular President in office, all were not enough to doom his campaign -- any chance of victory went irretrievably south after Senator McCain selected Governor Palin as his running mate.  Bold choice? You betcha, but look what it bought him.

I was hopeful after Ms. Palin's rousing convention speech, but I still worried that Joe Biden would wipe the floor with her at the debates -- he did not and I kept hoping.  I chose not to write about my Palin doubts, but my heart sunk after those Katy Couric interviews.  I became an impostor by my silence.

Katy Couric's interview revealed a vacuous performance from a candidate who is supposed to be a heartbeat away from the Oval Office.  Ms. Palin did the best she could and she will have a future in national politics, but she was not at all ready for this experience. Don't blame her, blame McCain's advisers. Having the "right views" and no skeletons, is not enough. 

Yes, Ms. Palin has a fine record as Governor, yes she appeals to my Midwestern values and yes I was invigorated by selection of a conservative woman on the ticket, but she simply doesn't know enough and she is not yet equipped to think fast enough on the national stage.  

As Peggy Noonan aptly put it in her October 17 Wall Street Journal column (Palin's Failin') -- "She just. . . says things."  One thought for future GOP campaign strategists:  if the market data suggests that your candidate's running mate should be a female-outside the Beltway-gun toting-strident Pro-Lifer; you must look harder than they did in 2008.