Archive for the ‘Joe Lieberman’ Category
One of the scariest thoughts a liberal can think of is the thought that Democrats can’t count on the monolithic vote of African Americans. According to this op-ed, the monolith is crumbling:
Indeed, President Obama, the iconic representative of the far left, believes that even a child born alive should be left to die without medical treatment if the mother intended an abortion. He championed this Mengelean position as a state senator in Illinois.
I was raised to be an FDR Democrat because my father was a young man during the Depression and credited President Roosevelt with saving him from starvation. “The Republicans only care about rich people,” I was told. This was more than 40 years ago. In spite of my childhood indoctrination, as a young man newly committed to my Christian faith, I had a crisis of conscience in the late 1970s. Massachusetts Democrat Barney Frank was pushing the homosexual agenda. How could I, as a Christian, be committed to a party led by Mr. Frank? In the end, I could not. My desire to be in a right relationship with God and my faith was greater than my desire to be approved by my father, my family or the black community. My wife and I, then Massachusetts residents, left the Democratic Party in 1980 and never looked back.
The GOP didn’t learn the lesson that Karl Rove tried teaching them. The GOP didn’t learn that African Americans that attend evangelical churches are frequently conservatives.
President Obama’s opposition to the Born Alive Infant Protection Act should infuriate thoughtful people of all political stripes. This could be black voters’ Brendan Loy moment. Brendan Loy is the Democrat who appreciates Sen. Joseph I. Lieberman. When Ned Lamont defeated Sen. Lieberman in the DFL primary, Loy spoke eloquently about how the Democratic Party’s base was shifting too far to the left:
But regardless of all that, the hard reality is that the voters have spoken, and their message was loud and clear: there’s no longer room for Joe Lieberman in the Democratic Party. And alas, tonight’s result will reverberate through the November elections and into the 2008 presidential campaign. It’s really much more than just a single primary in a single state; it’s a shot across the bow of moderate Democrats everywhere. And so, whatever further ramifications this result might have, there’s one thing it definitely means, one result that is officially cast in stone, as of today: I am no longer a Democrat.
Have African-American evangelicals hit that same wall of intolerance? That’s something we don’t know with any certainty at this point. Without question, though, it’s definitely an opening for conservatives.
During the peak of Bill Clinton’s administration, the Democratic Leadership Council, with politicians like Joe Lieberman, John Breaux and Evan Bayh on board, played a significant policy role within the Democratic Party. This article, unfortunately, tells of the end of that once-influential wing of the Democratic Party:
The Democratic Leadership Council, the iconic centrist organization of the Clinton years, is out of money and could close its doors as soon as next week, a person familiar with the plans said Monday.
The DLC, a network of Democratic elected officials and policy intellectuals had long been fading from its mid-’90s political relevance, tarred by the left as a symbol of “triangulation” at a moment when there’s little appetite for intra-party warfare on the center-right. The group tried, but has failed, to remake itself in the summer of 2009, when its founder, Al From, stepped down as president. Its new leader, former Clinton aide Bruce Reed, sought to remake the group as a think tank, and the DLC split from its associated think tank, the Progressive Policy Institute.
This just makes official what’s been known since August, 2006:
But regardless of all that, the hard reality is that the voters have spoken, and their message was loud and clear: there’s no longer room for Joe Lieberman in the Democratic Party. And alas, tonight’s result will reverberate through the November elections and into the 2008 presidential campaign. It’s really much more than just a single primary in a single state; it’s a shot across the bow of moderate Democrats everywhere. And so, whatever further ramifications this result might have, there’s one thing it definitely means, one result that is officially cast in stone, as of today:
I am no longer a Democrat.
That’s the night Brendan Loy’s announcement told the world that Pelosi’s progressives had taken over the Democratic Party. It’s when people like Markos Moulitsas and Arianna Huffington thought that they’d taken over the Democratic Party and that there’d be nothing but smooth sailing ahead.
Those days are long gone, with November’s elections reproving the fact that we’re still a center-right nation.
During the health care takeover debate, a number of votes proved that there’s no such thing as a centrist Democrat anymore. When supposed centrists like Bart Stupak and Ben Nelson voted the same way that extremists like Bernie Sanders and Dennis Kucinich voted, that’s proof positive that centrism is dead within the Democratic Party.
The DLC is already showing signs of disrepair. Its website currently leads a Harold Ford op-ed from last November, titled, “Yes we can collaborate.” It lists as its staff just four people, and has only one fellow.
The biggest reason why money isn’t coming into the DLC’s coffers is because donors want a seat at the Democratic table. That table is now located significantly farther to the left than it was during the Clinton administration.
That’s a negative for the Democratic Party. Their tent is rapidly shrinking. They aren’t appealing to independents. Tax increases and out-of-control spending aren’t in style. That’s what the Democratic now stands for.
UPDATE: Make sure and read the Lady Logician’s take on this, too.
We’re now officially in an election year here in Minnesota, which means that it’s a terrible time to deal with a budget deficit if you have the letters D-F-L behind your name.
One of the things I’ll specifically be paying attention to is how much the health care debate negatively affects DFL candidates and incumbents. I’ll be watching to see whether people have finally figured out that a moderate Democrat is someone who votes like Al Franken but sounds like Joe Lieberman or if they think that moderates still exist.
I’m betting that Ben Nelson and Amy Klobuchar finished that debate when they voted for the Senate’s wildly unpopular health care bill. So-called moderates like Ben and Bill Nelson, Evan Bayh and Amy Klobuchar voted just like socialist Bernie Sanders.
The next logical question is how that’ll play in Minnesota. There’s no better race to gauge that factor than by the Michele Bachmann vs. Tarryl Clark race. Tarryl has worked hard to craft a centrist image. Unfortunately, Tarryl’s votes don’t fit that image. That race will tell us whether the public has figured out that the Democrats’ votes doesn’t match their rhetoric.
Another race that might tell us alot in that respect is the Tim Walz race. I noted here that Rep. Walz “voted for bills that…will spend north of $3,500,000,000,000, that will increase taxes by $2,400,000,000,000 on small businesses, middle class families, fossil fuel-powered power plants and medical device makers.” If gas prices spike this summer, that will be additional firepower that the GOP candidate can use against Rep. Walz.
At the state legislative level, the DFL leadership has said that they’ll pass tax increases to balance the budget. This will make them easy to paint them into a corner on being the party that’s more worried about funding a 20th Century government than they’re worried about building a 21st Century economy:
The DFL knows it’s in trouble on that part because they’ve thrown together a Jobs Task Force. Here’s some of their recommendations:
State Direct Spending Programs
1. Provide more aid to local governments to prevent layoffs of local government employees and to limit cuts made to state government to avoid adding to unemployment.
2. Establish and fund a job subsidy program similar to the MEED program that the state operated in the 1980s.
3. Provide funding directly or through loan guarantees for programs like the Minnesota Initiative Fund.
4. Create or increase funding for workforce centers for the unemployed or underemployed and provide more state resources to help workers and laid-off workers make better informed decisions that affect their status under the unemployment compensation system.
5. Promote or publicize Minnesota businesses and their products.
6. Provide state funding for Project Energize.
7. Establish a state forgivable loan program for small manufacturers to purchase capital equipment, if the purchase will expand Minnesota employment.
8. Establish a state loan guarantee program to help expand the availability and affordability of credit for â€œvertical construction.â€
9. Continue to invest in education so the state has a skilled workforce when the recession is over and demand to hire employees rebounds.
10. Provide state support for federal SBA loan programs (e.g., help with paying fees or fund higher maximums).
11. Increase state support to Small Business Development Centers.
12. Expand state deposits of its cash to include community banks, not just the highest bidders, which tend to be exclusively money center banks.
13. Increase the size of the state bonding bill and focus as much money as possible on planned retrofitting, rehabilitation, and remodeling projects that can be undertaken very quickly.
14. Robustly fund the transportation portion of the capital bonding requests to continue construction as federal stimulus money for these types of projects begins to wind down.
15. Increase funding for the Growth Acceleration Program (GAP) that provides small business grants.
16. Expand use of recycling programs in state operations, including bonding bill projects, such as Wisconsin has adopted.
17. Expand funding for affordable housing, such as more nonprofit housing bonds and general obligation bonding for public housing.
18. Provide expanded funding for the Greater Minnesota Business Development Public Infrastructure grant program and reject proposals to merge it with other programs or to make it a statewide program.
19. Provide programs targeted to small Asian businesses to help them cope with the recession through technical assistance and loans.
20. Expand funding for early childhood education.
21. Reform K-12 education system through meaningful testing (GRAD standard), alternative teacher certification, and more results-driven charter schools.
22. Provide R&D funding, grants, loans, and technical assistance for green businesses and green chemistry practices.
Of these suggestions, I’d count as worthy nos. 5 and 9. Most of the rest of the DFL’s task force is a sop to their political allies, which is to be expected. Most of their suggestions would only get in the way of job creation and sustainable economic growth, meaning it’s counterproductive or worthless.
The fastest way to see the economy grow is by getting out of small businesses’ way. That means reforming the tax code and Minnesota’s regulatory regime. That means getting rid of the glut of health insurance mandates, too. It means finding new ways to providing essential services. Finally, get spending under control. Businesses know that irresponsible spending either leads to higher taxes or uncertainty in the economy.
Based on Obama’s stimulus bill, we’ve seen that spending irresponsibly is the fastest path to high deficits and higher interest rates, both of which hurt, not help, the economy.
Technorati: Elections, Deficits, Spending, Tax Increases, Speaker Kelliher, Tarryl Clark, Al Franken, Tim Walz, Ben Nelson, DFL, Economy, Michele Bachmann, Reforms, Regulations, Taxes, Health Care, Small Businesses, MNGOP, Election 2010
Last night, the Democrats ‘caved’ on expanding Medicare to appease Sen. Lieberman. Sen. Reid tried projecting a positive tone:
“Democrats aren’t going to let the American people down,” Majority Leader Harry Reid said after a closed-door meeting called to discuss last-minute trade-offs in the legislation that President Barack Obama has made a top priority. “I’m confident that by next week, we will be on our way toward final passage.”
That sounds familiar to what Sen. Reid said last week. That proposal didn’t last a week. That’s why I’m hesitating before I start thinking it’s a done deal. I’m not convinced that this legislation will get the approval of the American people.
This legislation still has $460,000,000,000 in Medicare cuts. It’s still got $400,000,000,000 in tax increases at a time when our economy is struggling. The legislation still contains individual and employer mandates. The legislation still will include lots of restrictions and other mandates, too. The legislation won’t cut insurance premium costs and it certainly won’t reduce the deficit or bend the cost curve downward.
In the end, this bill is somewhat better but it’s still terrible legislation. That’s because it’s coming at the problem from the wrong approach. If you want real reform, you need to start with reducing costs to people. That means reducing the number of coverages mandated by the government. HSAs and high deductible policies should play a prominent role in reform.
We also need to get government out of the health care industry as much as possible. Their Medicare reimbursement rates contribute greatly to the cost-shifting onto private insurance.
The tax increases included in Sen. Reid’s legislation will also cause a new round of layoffs just when the economy is showing signs of showing signs. Sen. Reid’s legislation will drive up labor costs by increasing taxes on small businesses. It isn’t a stretch to think that passing the Democrats’ legislation will hurt the economy.
In other words, it’s a new headline but it’s the same tired old story. The Democrats’ legislation is a bassackwards approach to reform, which is why the people are people are consistently and loudly rejecting it.
One positive thing it might do, albeit on a tiny scale, is that it’ll force Congress into hiring body guards and purchasing body armor. That’s assuming that they’ll return to their districts and states.
Technorati: Mandates, Employer Mandates, Individual Mandates, Taxes, Uninsured, Medicare Cuts, Harry Reid, Joe Lieberman, President Obama, Democrats, HSAs, Health Care Costs, Market Solutions, Conservatism
Cross-posted at California Conservative
If there’s a question that Dick Morris asks in his latest column, it’s whether the Democrats are really stupid enough to pass health care. Here’s a sample from his column:
Will you listen to the elderly who absorb 40 percent of medical care and not to the AARP, which you have bought by way of a promise to eliminate Medicare Advantage?
Will you listen to the doctors of America, two to one in opposition, and not to the AMA, which you have bludgeoned into submission via your threats of reimbursement cuts?
Will you stop to examine how, as Democrats, you can vote to slice $500 billion from Medicare and cut home healthcare? Former comrades-in-arms, former party-mates, do not commit party-cide by passing this bill!
Is this to be your epitaph? That you put all healthcare under government control? That your legacy is to be the waiting list to see a doctor? That the memorial to your public service is to be the denial of care at a bureaucrat’s whim?
The only historic thing that’ll come from this health care legislation is an historic electoral defeat for the Democrats in 2010.
One of the things fueling the TEA Party movement is DC’s unwillingness to listen to We The People. Voting for this legistlation when it’s getting 38 percent support only pours white gas onto the ‘Washington won’t listen’ fire. Voting against the will of the people won’t help Democrats get re-elected. It’ll usher alot of them, both in the House and Senate, into unexpected retirements. Further, it’ll make the possibility of President Obama being a one-term wonder that much more likely.
People are furious that Washington isn’t listening to them. I’ve heard pundits say that President Obama’s re-election hopes are tied directly to the economy. I’m not buying that. First, people understand that, at the core, he’s a radical who won’t hesitate in pushing a radical domestic agenda. Paradoxically, oeople understand that he’s hesitated in making important national security decisions.
What’s difficult for me to understand is why so-called moderates like Joe Lieberman, Evan Bayh and Ben Nelson haven’t rejected this legislation out-of-hand. The only thing that makes sense is that these senators aren’t true moderates, that they’ll enthusiastically support a radical leftist agenda, then talk a good centrist game.
After the 2008 election, the Ruy Teixeiras and the Markos Moulitsas of the world declared that the United States was now a center-left nation. I said then what I’m saying now: the United States is still a center-right nation.
I’ll also point out that it’ll be proven true that for every action, there’s an equal reaction. If the Democrats push a radical agenda, there will be a dramatic reaction to their overreach, a reaction that will produce some rather unpleasant election cycles for Democrats.
Few things bother TEA Party activists more than seeing politicians pursue policies that they can’t defend and/or explain. The Democrats can’t explain what’s in this legislation, much less defend what’s in their legislation. That’s why it’s difficult explaining why this legislation has gotten this far without it getting defeated, a fate the Democrats’ legislation richly deserves.
Cross-posted at California Conservative
According to this USA Today article, Joe Lieberman will hold a hearing into the DC Opportunity Scholarship Program. The Democrats’ education monolith is cracking. President Obama might have the NEA’s support on this but more people are asking why he isn’t supporting a real path to hope for DC’s children.
Back when he was on the city council for the District of Columbia, attorney Kevin Chavous would occasionally run into fellow Democrats concerned about the state of the USA’s urban schools. They were open to a lot of ideas, but most Democrats have historically rejected taxpayer-supported private-school vouchers, saying they drain precious cash from needy public schools. Chavous, who served from 1992 to 2005, openly supported vouchers. He would ask others why they didn’t.
“Several of them would whisper to me, ‘I’m with you, but I can’t come out in front,’” Chavous says.
That was then.
While vouchers will likely never be the clarion call of Democrats, they’re beginning to make inroads among a group of young black lawmakers, mayors and school officials who have split with party and teachers union orthodoxy on school reform. The group includes Sacramento Mayor Kevin Johnson, Newark Mayor Cory Booker and former Washington, D.C., mayor Anthony Williams.
Rep. John Kline has the right idea with regards to DC vouchers:
â€œPublic schools are the foundation of our education system and I am committed to doing everything I can to make sure they get the support necessary to educate our children effectively. But sometimes schools fail their obligation to our children. When that happens, parents and children deserve an alternative. In several cities with failing schools, school choice programs have been successful at giving children fresh hope and opportunities â€“ for a relatively small investment.
Unfortunately, the majority party in Congress recently passed a law that will kill one such program in Washington, DC that has shown great promise for success. This is not only unfair to children who are being forced back into failing schools but also sets a dangerous precedent. I will continue to fight for reauthorizing this program and supporting others like it.â€
Thanks for fighting the good fight on vouchers, Rep. Kline. It’s time people told Rep. Obey it isn’t about the unions, that it’s about giving children a world class education. President Obama recently said that he’d let all the children currently in DC’s Opportunity Scholarship Program finish out their education in private schools.
What a concession.
Until DC’s schools have been fixed, DC’s Opportunity Scholarship Program must continue. Letting current students finish their education in quality schools is a nice start but it’s just that: a start. Ending the program without fixing the public school system is unforgivable. It sells DC’s children out for some campaign contributions from the NEA’s leadership.
Since 2004, Democrats have told us that the world hates the United States. When they said that, they usually said that we were hated because of President Bush’s cowboy image and his unilateralism. As President Bush prepares to leave office, things are seeping out that suggest that the United States wasn’t hated. It appears that President Bush wasn’t as hated as Democratic politicians would have us believe. The latest proof comes from the Dalai Lama:
The Dalai Lama, a lifelong champion of non-violence candidly stated that terrorism cannot be tackled by applying the principle of ahimsa because the minds of terrorists are closed.
“It is difficult to deal with terrorism through non-violence,” the Tibetan spiritual leader said delivering the Madhavrao Scindia Memorial Lecture here.
He termed terrorism as the worst kind of violence which is not carried by a few mad people but by those who are very brilliant and educated. “They (terrorists) are very brilliant and educated…but a strong ill feeling is bred in them. Their minds are closed,” the Dalai Lama said. He said the only way to tackle terrorism is through prevention.
The head of the Tibetan government-in-exile left the audience stunned when he said “I love President George W Bush.” He went on to add how he and the US President instantly struck a chord in their first meeting unlike politicians who take a while to develop close ties.
“I told him ‘I love you but some of your policies I oppose’,” said the spiritual leader to a loud round of applause from the audience which included Rahul and Priyanka Gandhi, Election Commissioner Navin Chawla and several ministers, diplomats and artistes.
Hillary Clinton, Barack Obama, John Kerry and almost every other Democratic heavyweight not named Joe Lieberman has criticized President Bush’s foreign policy. At least, that’s what they’ve done until they’ve been placed in a position of responsibility.
They’ve criticized President Bush until they vote for renewing the Patriot Act or ending the Iraq War the minute they step into the Oval Office or until their supporters tell them to shut Gitmo ASAP. That’s when they start acting like President Bush.
That isn’t news.
What’s news is that the Dalai Lama has just exposed the Democrats’ Bush-hating ways. He’s essentially said that it isn’t possible to contain terrorism. He’s essentially said that it isn’t possible to negotiate with terrorists and the nation-states that support them.
Finally, he’s also said that the terrorist masterminds aren’t poor people who’ve been hoodwinked into blowing themselves up. They’re rich, well-educated people who talk others into blowing themselves up.
Cross-posted at California Conservative
Tom Bevan has a great post over on the Time-RCP blog about the misguided attacks against Sarah Palin. He prominently cites Juan Cole’s delirious article. Here’s the title and subtitle of Cole’s article:
What’s the difference between Palin and Muslim fundamentalists? Lipstick
A theocrat is a theocrat, whether Muslim or Christian.
Here’s the central thesis of Cole’s article:
But the values of his handpicked running mate, Sarah Palin, more resemble those of Muslim fundamentalists than they do those of the Founding Fathers. On censorship, the teaching of creationism in schools, reproductive rights, attributing government policy to God’s will and climate change, Palin agrees with Hamas and Saudi Arabia rather than supporting tolerance and democratic precepts.
This is just another bit of proof that Democrats are unhinged. Unlike 2006, though, their unhingedness will get highlighted to the fullest extent possible.
It’s wrong to think, though, that the Democrats’ foolishness is only directed at the GOP presidential ticket. That’s only their latest round of foolishness. The Democratic majorities in Congress have been botching things since they retook the majorities in the House and Senate. Speaker Pelosi’s gavelling shut the House without letting a vote on a real drilling package went over like a lead balloon.
My point is this: While it’s true that ‘journalists’ like Juan Cole have hastened and deepened the Democrats’ slide, voters haven’t been inspired to have confidence in the Democrats’ leadership. Quite the contrary. They’ve registered their disgust with job approval ratings that rival Vladimir Putin’s popularity with Georgians.
The cancer that the Democratic Party must eliminate is the Nutroots/anti-war crowd. They’re badly out of touch with America. To be sure, there are people who oppose this war. They’re the shrill minority. They aren’t close to being the majority. In 2006, people voted Democrat because we weren’t winning in Iraq. It’s different in 2008 because people see that we’ve made great progress.
The other point that can’t be ignored is that the Huffington Post and Daily Kos have rallied the activists. They aren’t appealing to independents in an attempt to expand the party. Their scope is limited because of their dogmatism. When they ran Joe Lieberman out of their party, they ran lots of like-minded people out, too. They’re just one of the key targets of the McCain-Palin ticket this fall.
Lieberman Democrats and disenchanted suburban women who supported Hillary will remember that Gov. Palin praised Hillary and Geraldine Ferraro in her introduction speech. They’ll remember Joe Lieberman being given a prominent speaking role at the Republicans’ convention. Those voters will appreciate the fact that the GOP, while being a principled party, isn’t the dogmatic party.
Don’t think that won’t play well in Scranton, PA, Columbus, OH, Richmond, VA and the UP in Michigan.
That’s why the Democrats’ bus is in worse shape than it appears.
Technorati: Democrats, Juan Cole, Hamas, Christians, Daily Kos, Huffington Post, Anti-War Activists, Iraq, Joe Lieberman, Hillary Clinton, Geraldine Ferraro, Sarh Palin, John McCain, Scranton, Election 2008
Cross-posted at California Conservative
Check out this post on DU:
I’ve been here a long time. Not a prolific poster, but a prolific reader. And from what I’ve read today, I don’t belong here anymore.
Women being bashed for their right to choose having a family and a career with the support of their spouse.
Women being called sluts, bimbos and brood mares.
Women having their appearance dissected and witchhunts for compromising photos.
Innocent young girls being slandered with rumors & innuendos.
Enough. I want to win. But I don’t want to win this way. And if you do, then I don’t want any part of it.
It’s easy to rip the Fever Swampers. They’ve made tons of outlandish comments. They’ve spewed tons of conspiracy theories that weren’t just outlandish; they were beyond what intelligent human beings could believe.
I suspect that there are more DU diarists out there that are appalled with the filth that’s posted on DU. I suspect that they’re much like Brendan Loy. Here’s what Loy said in August, 2006:
But regardless of all that, the hard reality is that the voters have spoken, and their message was loud and clear: thereâ€™s no longer room for Joe Lieberman in the Democratic Party. And alas, tonightâ€™s result will reverberate through the November elections and into the 2008 presidential campaign. Itâ€™s really much more than just a single primary in a single state; itâ€™s a shot across the bow of moderate Democrats everywhere. And so, whatever further ramifications this result might have, thereâ€™s one thing it definitely means, one result that is officially cast in stone, as of today:
I am no longer a Democrat.
Brendan Loy is the embodiment of what I’m calling Lieberman Democrats. Don’t be surprised if there’s an exodus of these voters to the McCain-Palin ticket.
What Fever Swampers don’t get is that their hate-filled diatribes are driving people away from the Democratic Party. They haven’t figured out that hate doesn’t sell. They haven’t figured out that people want common sense leaders with a positive agenda. The Swampers haven’t figured out that most voters have higher decency standards than the Swampers have.
All I can say to lunatics on the DU fringe Left is this: Keep it up. You’re part of our victory strategy.
Cross-posted at California Conservative
Here are a couple of concerns Kevin raises:
McCain turns 72 years old today. When thinking about a VP, I believe voters look at them and think, â€œcan I imagine this person as presidentâ€. For all his flaws, Joe Biden passes that test. Will Sarah Palin? I donâ€™t know?
Can she hold her own against a hostile press corps? How about against Joe Biden for that matter? The only honest answer is that nobody knows. I saw her about a month ago on Larry Kudlowâ€™s TV show and I thought she did ok, not great, just ok. If that was my impression watching her in friendly territory, how will she do when really pressed?
With all due respect to Kevin, Joe Biden only passes the test stylistically. That isn’t nearly good enough for me. It’s why I ignored statements like this or that candidate “looks presidential.” When Sen. Obama took his overseas trip, especially after his meetings with President Sarkozy and PM Brown and in his ‘Citizen of the World’ speech in Berlin, the press practically wet their pants in talking about how presidential he looked.
Back then, I told a friend that it only took an expensive suit, a fresh haircut and a manicure to look presidential. I said that it’s another thing to be presidential.
People noticed the difference when Russia invaded Georgia. That’s when people saw Sen. McCain looking and acting presidential.
Kevin cited Gov. Palin’s interview with Larry Kudlow, saying that she looked ok, not great. I didn’t see the interview so I’ll take Kevin’s word on that. The Sarah Palin that addressed the frienzied crowd in Dayton looked absolutely poised. Yes, she was introduced to a friendly crowd but she was also making history. I’d be surprised if there weren’t a ton of butterflies loose in the pit of her stomach. She nailed that speech.
Allahpundit raises other serious concerns:
Whatever you think of Barry O, heâ€™s got intelligence to spare to handle the job; a voter worried that Obama doesnâ€™t know what heâ€™s in for can console himself with the fact that heâ€™ll be a quick study. That may be true of Palin too but she doesnâ€™t have much time to show it, which is why every last mistake on the trail will be magnified to â€œproveâ€ that sheâ€™s a hick whoâ€™s out of her depth.
I don’t buy that argument in this sense. If she makes a tiny error, Keith Olberman, Chris Matthews, the Agenda Media and the Nutroots will cite this as proof that she isn’t fit to be vice president. Big deal. Conservative naysayers like David Frum and Ramesh Punnuru likely will too, mostly to make the case that they were right.
Now let’s get to the heart of the matter. I’ll cede the point that Sarah Palin’s Rolodez isn’t filled with the names of every world leader. Neither is Sen. Obama’s, which brings me to this point: There’s a tradeoff this election.
Do we want an inexperienced man as commander-in-chief or an inexperienced woman as a heartbeat away from being commander-in-chief?
Another legitimate question is whether Sen. McCain could’ve picked someone else that would’ve had more experience. The answer is yes. He could’ve picked Joe Lieberman but that would’ve caused trouble with the GOP base. It also would’ve said that McCain was bringing in another traditional inside-the-Beltway thinker. With this being a change election, that pick would’ve been a disaster.
Now let me make the case for Sarah Palin.
It’s true that Sarah Palin isn’t the polished old pro on national security matters. I’ll defy anyone to prove that she isn’t a quick learner, though. Her son leaves for Iraq in 10 days. Anyone think that she won’t be paying attention to everything that’s happening there? I’m betting that she’ll become real familiar real quick on foreign policy matters.
Which leads to the most important point. She isn’t being brought in to be the foreign policy guru. She’s being brought in to (a) drive the reform message, (b) drive the drilling message, and (c) drive the mesage home that wasteful spending is history in a McCain administration.
Does anyone, in either party, have her reform credentials? The answer is an emphatic no. Tim Pawlenty and Mitt Romney are both fine men capable of stepping right into the commander-in-chief role. That isn’t what voters are looking for this election. They’re looking for someone who won’t just end business-as-usual Washington.
With Congress’s approval rating half of Nixon’s final approval rating, they want someone that’ll take a torch to Capitol Hill and their K Street supporters. That’s precisely what they see in Sarah Palin and only Sarah Palin. That’s what will drive this election.
Before her pick, I’ve told friends that Obama’s stumbles told me he wasn’t ready for primetime. That’s before he picked a nontalent like Joe Biden. By mid-August, I’d told friends that this was McCain’s to lose. It’s obvious that the Obama campaign’s momentum ended with his fundraising speech in San Fransisco.
Meanwhile, the McCain campaign started gaining momentum after he clinched the nomination. It started off slow. Then he started closing the gap with Sen. Obama. When Sen. McCain picked Sarah Palin, that momentum reached maximum velocity. Already the Obama post-convention bounce has been eliminated. Don’t be surprised if McCain-Palin leads in the polls before this week’s end.
Finally, I’ll point to something that Richard Nixon once said about the role of a running mate. He said that the best thing a running mate can do for the top of the ticket is to get the team elected. The thinking is inarguable. If they aren’t elected, all other considerations are meaningless.
That’s why the inexperience/Commander-in-Chief argument is a flimsy argument. It’s an argument made by thoughtful people with the best of intentions but it’s still a flimsy argument.
Cross-posted at California Conservative