Palin/Biden Deathmatch?

Here’s one I don’t understand…why every pundit in Washington says Joe Biden will need to be very careful in attacking Sarah Palin in their VP debate. To me its the most sexist thing anyone could say about her candidacy. 

I thought Sarah Palin was the tough-girl, Moose-Killer, Hockey Mom? If she is ready to be commander in chief and has all this foreign policy experience (after all Alaska is the closest state to Russia), why should Biden have to take it easy? Because it won’t look good if the boy beats up on the girl? Please, Gov. Palin, you can’t have it both ways. If you’re a heartbeat away from the presidency, you better be ready to explain your positions to Joe Biden or anyone else with a brain that can ask intelligent questions. Quite frankly, I hope the intellectual gloves come off and we see her have to defend policy positions so close to the Bush era, there’s hardly a visible difference. If she can convince the electorate the US is doing a good job and should keep on doing it…then she’ll win the debate and deserve…otherwise, this Moose-Killer will be lunch meat.

Peggy Noonan and Mike Murphy: It’s Over

They thought they were off-mic. But guess what….

Not a crushing blow, but revealing that credible analysts think the Palin Pick was a disaster, and only admit it when they think no one is listening.

Dowd fillets Palin Pick

Maureen Dowd runs right at the Palin Pick

Some of my favorite quotes:

…Only four days into her reign as John McCain’s “soul mate,” or “Trophy Vice,” as some bloggers are calling her, on the ticket known as “Maverick Squared,” Palin, the governor of Alaska, has already accrued two gates (Troopergate and Broken-watergate), a lawyer (for Troopergate), a future son-in-law named Levi (a high school ice hockey player, described by New York magazine as “sex on skates”), and a National Enquirer headline about the “Teen Prego Crisis” with 17-year-old daughter Bristol…

 

…Since John McCain played craps first and sent the vetters to Alaska afterward, Republicans have been defending Governor Palin by saying that, while she has no foreign policy experience — except, as Cindy McCain pointed out, that “Alaska is the closest part of our continent to Russia” — she has a lot of domestic policy experience as a supercharged P.T.A. and hockey mom…

 

…When you make a gimmicky pick of an unknown, without proper vetting, there’s bound to be a sticky press conference sooner or later….

 

When McCain gets in trouble, he pulls out the P.O.W. card. Now Republicans are pulling out the sexist card….

…Hillary cried sexism to cover up her incompetent management of her campaign, and now Republicans have picked up that trick. But when you use sexism as an across-the-board shield for any legitimate question, you only hurt women. And that’s just another splash of reality.

 

My take on this is a little different. Would there be 1/2 as much interest in the convention or the Republicans in general were it not for the Palin pick? Maybe McCain’s thinking wasn’t flawed, just incredibly short term. That he needed to get some media mojo back after Obama’s convention-cum-anointing. 

The media is having a field day with the pick. But maybe that’s the idea. Sarah Palin is giving everyone something to talk about. McCain’s policies certainly weren’t.

Obama: Three Things to Watch

Political wonks of all stripes on both sides of the aisle are largely coming to the mutual conclusion that this race is entirely about Barack Obama. Which, by the way, is exactly what Senator McCain wants. Republican strategists believe that if the race were solely about issues, Democratic positions poll so much better than Republican ones the race would be over before it started. Thus McCain strategy is to break Obama down and destroy our faith in him. 

I’m going to go out on a limb here and make an observation. Most Americans aren’t paying attention right now. Oh sure, I’m reading blogs, checking the web, watching youtube. But the average voter is having fun this August. They endured an impossibly long primary season and are quite rightly taking a break from the monotony of the campaign. The Olympics are coming and they will offer a further much needed diversion from politics. As such, there are three moments that Obama needs to nail, if he does he will win the Presidency. If he does not, it’s anybody’s game…

His VP pick is crucial

Lots of analysts are in the camp that Obama’s pick doesn’t matter as much as McCain’s. I actually think he really needs an attack dog VP that can get out there and get offended on his behalf. Obama’s above the fray rhetoric, sometimes leaves him vulnerable to cheap shots. A tenacious VP who can defend him vigorously while he talks issues is a valuable asset. 

The Convention Speech

Unlike most conventions, Obama’s campaign has turned the convention into an outright media event, but it has a purpose. If nothing else it’s a huge voting drive. Obama activists are getting first dibs on tickets. His rockstar rhetoric and the huge setting will give his campaign a morale boost unheard of in modern political history. The rest of the nation needs to get swept up in this rally.

The First Debate

Often the most watched, the first debate between these two will turn issues front and center. When it does Obama needs to win it. It can’t be close, McCain is a feisty debater, good at getting opponents off message. Obama has had debate issues in the past, he needs to win this one clearly on points or score a knockout. If he does many Americans who were worried about his abilities will take a chance.