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Palin : A Breathtakingly Reckless VP Choice -

US Politics & Gov't  (tags: John McCain, Sarah Palin, Mitt Romney, Republicans, Conservatives, RNC, media, ALaska, corruption, lobbyists, BIG OIL, campaign 2008 )

- 3520 days ago -
As a purely political matter, McCain's choice of Palin will overshadow this week's convention... the media will rightly be doing their job, trying to figure out who Palin is. Palin, not Obama, will be the issue, in a way that Romney...would not have been

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Blue Bunting (855)
Monday September 1, 2008, 4:52 pm

Northern Underexposure
By E. J. Dionne

ST. PAUL, Minn. -- By all rights, there should be a revolt at this week's Republican convention against John McCain's selection of Sarah Palin as his running mate -- for the very same reasons so many Republicans opposed President Bush's selection of Harriet Miers for the Supreme Court.

Palin is, if anything, less qualified for the vice presidency (and the presidency) than Miers was for the court. But there is one big difference: Palin passes all the right-wing litmus tests, which means she is unlikely to suffer Miers' fate.

It's amusing to watch Republicans play gender politics. At the time Bush chose Miers, he was under pressure to pick a woman to replace retiring Justice Sandra Day O'Connor. But most of the plausible women jurists were either too moderate to satisfy conservatives or so right wing that they faced serious confirmation problems.

So Bush picked his close White House aide, hoping that his own standing with the right would push her through. Conservatives would have none of it. They assailed Miers' lack of judicial grounding. And they certainly had a case. But what really bothered them was that they had no idea how she would vote on the court. Fearing she was a closet moderate, they blocked her.

McCain, it appears, also wanted a woman, and so he went with Alaska's young governor with strongly conservative views. How do Palin and Miers compare?

Miers, at least, had been a lawyer for 35 years, the head of the state bar in Texas and White House counsel. Palin's experience comes down to a couple of years as governor and six years as mayor of Wasilla, Alaska, a town with a population of under 10,000.

Where Miers definitely tops Palin is on the question of whether her patron can vouch for her. Bush knew Miers well, worked with her closely, trusted her deeply. You can question Bush's judgment in pushing her for the court -- for the record, at the time I called the choice "too clever" and thus "dangerous" -- but at least he had good reason to believe in the person he was asking others to count on.

McCain, as far as anyone can tell, met Palin only once before considering her for vice president, and once more before settling on her, which is to say he barely knows her. For the purpose of courting disaffected Hillary Clinton voters and satisfying the social conservatives, McCain is willing to place someone he knows mostly from press clippings in the direct line of succession to the presidency. There is a breathtaking recklessness about this choice.

There are many who say that in choosing Palin, McCain has taken the issue of experience off the table. I disagree. Now, the balance on experience shifts toward the Democrats, and it's not just for the obvious reason that Joe Biden is manifestly more qualified than Palin.

Conservatives have complained that we barely know Obama. This is nonsense. Obama has been thoroughly vetted over the four years since he entered the public spotlight. We have been given fewer than 70 days to get to know Palin.

In particular, we know Obama's foreign policy views in great detail. About Palin's opinions on foreign policy, we know absolutely nothing. According to a 1999 Associated Press report, she sported a Pat Buchanan button when Buchanan visited Wasilla during his campaign for the 2000 Republican nomination. Does this mean she shares Buchanan's isolationist foreign policy views? Who can say? There is no record.

That only a handful of conservatives have so far expressed doubts about Palin demonstrates that ideology is what drove them during the Miers fight, and drives them still. Miers' lack of experience was, for many conservatives, a convenient rationale for opposing someone they worried might become another David Souter. Palin's lack of experience is irrelevant because she is right -- actually, quite far right -- on the conservatives' issues.

As a purely political matter, McCain's choice of Palin will overshadow this week's convention. The Republicans once hoped to use their gathering to persuade Americans not to trust Obama. But as the speakers here make their case, the media will rightly be doing their job, trying to figure out who Palin is. Palin, not Obama, will be the issue, in a way that Mitt Romney, Tim Pawlenty or some other well-known figure would not have been.

But there is also the question of principle. In picking Biden as his running mate, it's Obama who made the prudent choice. McCain is asking us to roll the dice. You'd think that people who call themselves conservative would have a problem with that.

Clever Pseudonym (176)
Monday September 1, 2008, 10:36 pm
I hear that in the VERY limitted discussions they had Palin claims she told him her little girl was pregnant. Did they both think this would be okay with their base? Did they hope to spin her as some kind of white trash hero? Or did they just really really want to appoint a woman who would have to drop and 'prove' that women can't hack it due to family responsibilities?

They both could have made better choices but to compare them is ludicrous because choosing Biden is viable, choosing Palin is suicidal.

Blue Bunting (855)
Monday September 1, 2008, 10:38 pm
You can bet the farm on this: the Romney camp (including pledged delegates) is furiously talking up Troopergate, Pregnantgate, and anything else they can dig up in 30 minutes of oppo research (that being more than the McCain vetters did).

The next 3 days are gonna be good.

It's great poetic justice considering how hard McBush's people tried to hype the Obama-Clinton feud (their own version of the bridge to nowhere).

Martha A (8)
Tuesday September 2, 2008, 6:23 pm
I am delighted that McCain has picked Sarah Palin to be his running mate. She already has more managerial experience than either obama or biden by having served as mayor of her city, and governor of her date. She will, indeed be an asset to the ticket as she is a true american woman who has fought dirty politics and the good ole buddy system AS far as I know, she doesnt have crooks for friends, like ayers and REzko and has never taken money for her campaign, from someone who used to be closely alligned to Saddam Hussein, in the 50s who now lives in Britain...This appears to be someone the American Press is afraid to write about... Its doubtful it will make any difference,as the REpublicans will win by a grand slide and are completely aware of whom obama is and whom his friens are.

Kare H. (0)
Tuesday September 2, 2008, 7:29 pm
Hi Maria: I'm worried. You've been lied to and I think it's deplorable that someone would feel you false information. I want to help you set the record straight on some the allegations people have fed you:

Palin was a part-time mayor of a small town of under 6000 while she was mayor. You can see the picture of city hall here:

When she took office, the town has $0 in debt. When she left, it had $22 million.

Here's the quote: "She inherited a city with zero debt, but left it with indebtedness of over $22 million. What did Mayor Palin encourage the voters to borrow money for? Was it the infrastructure that she said she supported? The sewage treatment plant that the city lacked? or a new library? No. $1m for a park. $15m-plus for construction of a multi-use sports complex which she rushed through to build on a piece of property that the City didnít even have clear title to, that was still in litigation 7 yrs later--to the delight of the lawyers involved! The sports complex itself is a nice addition to the community but a huge money pit, not the profit-generator she claimed it would be. She also supported bonds for $5.5m for road projects that could have been done in 5-7 yrs without any borrowing."

Here's the link to the quote:

She hired a lobbyist to help her get earmarks for her town.

Here's a quote: "The problem, though, is that McCain's running mate has hired lobbyists to quietly secure lucrative earmarks, receiving millions of tax dollars on pork-barrel projects."

Here's the link to the quote:

She supported the "Bridge to Nowhere" until after Congress denied the funding.

Here's the quote: "she had supported the bridge and the earmark for it secured by Alaska's Congressional delegation during her run for governor."

here's the link for the quote:

She served on a large 527 committee to help currently indicted Sen. Ted Stevens get re-elected.

Here's the quote: "Palin didn't "take on" the allegedly corrupt Alaskan senator; she allied herself with him throughout her brief political career. That includes, we learned today, Palin's work on Stevens' 527 group."

Here's the link to the quote:

Apparently, the press is NOT afraid to write about this. I hope you have a chance to investigate these links.


Blue Bunting (855)
Tuesday September 2, 2008, 7:37 pm
Martha A.

Wichita Falls, TX, USA
married, 2 children
Joined Aug 18, 2007

ROTFLMBO ... e know WHO you are Martha!


Blue Bunting (855)
Tuesday September 2, 2008, 7:52 pm
Kare H., ... facts don't mean "diddlety squat" to Maria ... Maria will keep posting RepubliCON "talking Points" so that she can get a mou$e pad or a hat for her efforts to deceive the Ameircan people ...
Maria has no conscious ...

Kare H. (0)
Tuesday September 2, 2008, 8:54 pm
Hey Blue: I think she's going for the McCain golf bag. She won't take my concern seriously, but maybe she'll stop posting that silliness.

Probably not.

Martha A (8)
Wednesday September 3, 2008, 12:52 pm
I doubt there is any government official that has not made some mistakes..The democrats want to charge us 300 million for more government programs, most likely, to help people like you and want to redistribute the wealth of america to third world countries. Of course, I am not in agreement with that...I myself, help two families in Africa as I write. I want to make my money goes where I want it to go...
Yes sarahs daughter has made a mistake too but at least she is going to marry the father of her baby and not have an abortion. She is going to give her child the right to life. I believe, however, it is TEd Stephens who is hot water for mis-using government money and not sarah...I believe when obama was in the senate in illinois he directed money towards Rezko for his low cost senior citizen ghousing, so that is why rezko helped him purchase a million dollar house. Dont just read what you want to...

Blue Bunting (855)
Wednesday September 3, 2008, 12:53 pm
Martha, don't you think we should RCALL Dick Cheney ... he's over in Georgia giving away $1 billion to help them rebuild their country ...

Kare H. (0)
Wednesday September 3, 2008, 1:22 pm
martha, martha, what do you mean "people like you" hominem attacks on people are beneath you, I'm sure. Probably you've had a bad day. And, let's be frank, it's easier to read wingnut smear sites than, say, the New York Times, the Washington Post, etc.

Here's an article on Palin's support for the Bridge to Nowhere:

It's got pictures for you.

Kare H. (0)
Wednesday September 3, 2008, 7:18 pm
Hi Blue: I uploaded a new avatar. What do you think?

Blue Bunting (855)
Wednesday September 3, 2008, 7:37 pm
I love it Kare! ... A Mayor who made no executive decisions that weren't approved by the City Administrator ... hired by "the party" to keep $arah out of trouble ...when she was almost recalled for abuse of poer. LOL!


Martha A (8)
Wednesday September 3, 2008, 9:03 pm
What main bill has obama ever introduced in the Senate when he was in Illinois, what payroll has he ever been responsible for, what has he done in the present senaTe, except spend all his time out campaigning for president....Like palin said change is not a destination and Hope is not a strategy...Obama is all show, no substance and has no experience...Palin knocked it out of the Park tonight and will readily out talk Biden and obama as well...

Kare H. (0)
Wednesday September 3, 2008, 9:46 pm
Sure, Maria: here's a list of his bills in the Illinois Senate:

Here are his accomplishments in the US Senate:
The Secure America and Orderly Immigration Act
Introduced by Sen. John McCain in May 2005, and cosponsored by Sen. Edward Kennedy. Barack Obama added three amendments to this bill.

While the bill was never voted on in the Senate, the Comprehensive Immigration Reform Acts of 2006 and 2007, respectively, drew heavily upon the wording of this bill.

The Lugar-Obama Cooperative Threat Reduction.
Introduced by Sen. Barack Obama, Sen. Dick Lugar and Sen. Tom Coburn.

First introduced in November 2005 and enacted in 2007, this bill expanded upon the successful Nunn-Lugar threat reduction, which helped secure weapons of mass destruction and related infrastructure in former Soviet Union states.

Lugar-Obama expanded this nonproliferation program to conventional weapons -- including shoulder-fired rockets and land mines. When the bill received $48 million in funding, Obama said, "This funding will further strengthen our ability to detect and intercept illegal shipments of weapons and materials of mass destruction, enhancing efforts to prevent nuclear terrorism."

Federal Funding Accountability and Transparency Act of 2006
This act of Congress, introduced by Senators Obama and Coburn, required the full disclosure of all entities or organizations receiving federal funds in FY2007.

Despite a "secret hold" on this bill by Senators Ted Stevens and Robert Byrd, the act passed into law and was signed by President Bush. The act had 43 cosponsors, including John McCain.

The act created this Web site, which provides citizens with valuable information about government-funded programs.

Democratic Republic of the Congo Relief, Security, and Democracy Promotion Act

This law helped specify US policy toward the Congo, and states that the US should work with other donor nations to increase international contributions to the African nation.

The bill marked the first federal legislation to be enacted with Obama as its primary sponsor. Following this legislation's passage, Obama toured Africa, traveling to South Africa, Kenya, Djibouti, Ethiopia and Chad. He spoke forcefully against ethnic rivalries and political corruption in Kenya.

Honest Leadership and Open Government Act
In the first month of the 110th Congress, Obama worked with Sen. Russ Feingold to pass this law, which amends and strengthens the Lobbying Disclosure Act of 1995.

Specificially, the changes made by Obama and Feingold requires public disclosure of lobbying activity and funding, places more restrictions on gifts for members of Congress and their staff, and provides for mandatory disclosure of earmarks in expenditure bills.

The House passed the bill, 411-8, on July 31. The Senate approved it, 83-14, on Aug. 2. At the time, Obama called it "the most sweeping ethics reform since Watergate."

Deceptive Practices and Voter Intimidation Prevention Act

Following the Republican-sponsored voter intimidation tactics seen in mostly black counties in Maryland during the 2006 midterm elections, Obama worked with Sen. Chuck Schumer to introduce this bill.

The bill has been referred to the United States Senate Committee on the Judiciary. Obama said of the bill, "This legislation would ensure that for the first time, these incidents are fully investigated and that those found guilty are punished."

The Obama-McCain Climate Change Reduction Bill

The Obama-McCain bill, which is co-sponsored by Sen. Joe Lieberman, I-Conn., would cut emissions by two-thirds by 2050.

Iraq War De-Escalation Act of 2007

Introduced by Obama, this binding act would stop the planned troop increase of 21,500 in Iraq, and would also begin a phased redeployment of troops from Iraq with the goal of removing all combat forces by March 31, 2008.

Explaining the bill, Obama said it reflects his view that the problems in Iraq do not have a military solution. "Our troops have performed brilliantly in Iraq, but no amount of American soldiers can solve the political differences at the heart of somebody else's civil war," Obama said.

Amendments to the 2008 Defense Authorization Bill

Obama worked with Sen. Kit Bond to limit, through this bill, the Pentagonís use of personality disorder discharges in the FY 2008 Defense Authorization bill.

This provision would add additional safeguards to discharge procedures and require a thorough review by the Government Accountability Office. This followed news reports that the Pentagon inappropriately used these procedures to discharge service members with service-connected psychological injuries.

"With thousands of American service members suffering day in and day out from the less visible wounds of war, reports that the Pentagon has improperly diagnosed and discharged service members with personality disorders are deeply disturbing," said Senator Obama. "This provision will add additional safeguards to the Department of Defenseís use of this discharge and mandate a comprehensive review of these policies."

The Comprehensive Nuclear Threat Reduction provision

Working with Sen. Hagel and Rep. Adam Schiff, Obama authored this provision, which would require the president to develop a comprehensive plan for ensuring that all nuclear weapons and weapons-usable material at vulnerable sites around the world are secure by 2012 from the threats that terrorists have shown they can pose.

A provision from the Obama-Hagel bill was passed by Congress in December 2007 as an amendment to the State-Foreign Operations appropriations bill.

"It is imperative that we build and sustain a truly global effort under an aggressive timeline to secure, consolidate, and reduce stockpiles of nuclear weapons and weapons-usable material to keep them out of the wrong hands. The comprehensive nuclear threat reduction plan required by this provision is an important step in that effort," Obama said of the provision.

I think Palin probably appealed to the base tonight, but she didn't do much for the moderates and that's crucial. Personally, I found her voice and manner annoying and thought she looked like McCain's granddaughter.

Plus, she has a pastor problem. If you Google the name of her church (I think it's Wasilla Church of Christ, but I could be wrong, just google Palin, Wasilla, church), she sat in the audience two weeks ago while a preacher said the Jews deserve being bombed because they haven't accepted Christ. There's also a video of her standing there next to a pastor who is saying "Alaska is a refuge state for the end times and we need to prepare." That means that she thinks the second coming is upon us and people will be going to Alaska for refuge. That's a little odd in my book.

More than that, she thinks Global Warming doesn't exist.

I kept looking at her and thought, "yeah, she's got the pitbull with lipstick part right, but I can't imagine her being president. She has no gravitas."

Look for McCain to keep her away from national media and only use her for local press and appearances to stir the base.

Kare H. (0)
Wednesday September 3, 2008, 10:01 pm
Here's something else Martha: As you may know the McCain campaign is very angry at the press for delving into Palin's record as Mayor and Governor. Here's a response to the McCain camp from Time Magazine:

There is a tendency in the media to kick ourselves, cringe and withdraw, when we are criticized. But I hope my colleagues stand strong in this case: it is important for the public to know that Palin raised taxes as governor, supported the Bridge to Nowhere before she opposed it, pursued pork-barrel projects as mayor, tried to ban books at the local library and thinks the war in Iraq is "a task from God." The attempts by the McCain campaign to bully us into not reporting such things are not only stupidly aggressive, but unprofessional in the extreme.

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