29 Aug 2008

The Palin Strategy

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Noemie Emory, in the Weekly Standard, explains why the choice of Sarah Palin is a brilliant strategic move.

1. Steps on the story of Obama’s speech (and convention), and possibly the bounce coming from them, and wipes them off the news cycle. The Sunday news shows will be all-Palin, all of the time.

2. Sends Republicans into their convention on a huge head of steam.

3. Wipes out the image of McCain as the crotchety elder and brings back that of the fly-boy and gambler, which is much more appealing, and the genuine person.

4. Revs up the base AND excites independents, which no one else in the party, or perhaps in the world, could have accomplished.

5. Puts youth, change, and history on both of the tickets.

6. May detach some young people, especially women.

7. May attach some women pissed off about Hillary.

8. As a pro-life super-achiever, puts feminists in a tizzy.

9. Revives some of the double-edged nature of the Democratic primary, which featured a black vs. a female trail-blazer, and put both sides on notice on sensitivity issues. Democrats used to raising charges of racism against Obama’s critics may face charges of sexism and/or condescension if they try to diss her.

10. Steps on Obama’s claims to have been a reformer, as he reformed nothing (much less the corrupt mare’s nest of Chicago arrangements), while she was a dragon-slayer up in Alaska.

11. As a mother of five, one a Down Syndrome baby, helps her side take on the Democrats on abortion extremism and the Born Alive bill.

12. Reignites the deep and unhealed stresses inside the Democrats, some of whom will now wonder more loudly than ever why they didn’t pick Hillary.

13. Counters Michelle in a way Cindy couldn’t.

14. Counter-intuitively, makes the issue of Obama’s light resume more potent than ever. Her lack of experience is no more than his is. And he’s–to use a term from Alaska, and the Iditarod–their lead dog.

McCain displayed with this selection a boldness and willingness to gamble uncharacteristic of Washington politicians. It’s more in the spirit of the US Navy, going completely on the offensive and being willing to risk everything to deliver a decisive blow in a form the enemy could never have anticipated and prepared for.

I don’t think McCain came up with all of this himself, but he is clearly getting some very clever advice these days, to which he is paying attention. He may very well be president yet.


H/t to Karen L. Myers.

One Feedback on "The Palin Strategy"


The real scary thing is, and I say this as a lifetime conservative, that we have a potential VP who is not qualified, cannot answer the simplest questions on politics, the economy or foreign affairs, and is without substance. It’s a sad state of affairs all the way around. I won’t vote for this ticket because it is insulting to serious conservatives. There were many other great and qualified conservatives whom McCain could have chosen for a running mate. Palin is a joke to be taken seriously. Our nation is too great, powerful and important to have such a dismal failure and neophyte as a candidate.


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