McCain made a surprise choice of Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin as his VP. The first thing that jumps into my mind: she’s an ID supporter, thinks it should be taught along with evolution in public school science classrooms. She’s also relatively anti-gay. Supporters will point to the fact that she vetoed a bill that would have done away with partnership benefits for gay state employees, but she did that only after the Alaska Supreme Court had ruled the opposite and her AG had told her the law was unconstitutional. She publicly disagreed with that ruling and supported a referendum to have the state constitution amended to overturn it.
The conservative reaction so far seems not to be too happy. The choice of Palin obviously voids any attacks on Obama because of experience; two years ago Palin was the part-time mayor of a small village of only a few thousand people in Alaska, for crying out loud. John Hinderaker at Powerline:
I’m worried about Palin. I’m afraid she may be the Geraldine Ferraro of 2008. If she really is the nominee, will it come across as a desperation move, a Hail Mary, as Mondale’s choice of Ferraro did in 1984? I’m afraid so. Her experience just doesn’t justify a place on the ticket.
Paul Mirengoff agrees with him:
I’m very disappointed that John McCain would put someone as inexperienced and lacking in foreign policy and national security background as Sarah Palin a heartbeat away from the presidency.
Could this help McCain woo some of those PUMAs away from the Democrats? Possibly. It was really the only choice he had that could possibly do that AND help him with the religious right base. In that respect, I think it’s a shrewd strategic choice for him.