At 72, by presidential standards, Sen. John McCain, the Republican nominee, is old. In fact, he'd be the oldest president ever to serve. But Grandpa John's age is that much more pronounced when he stands beside his much younger trophy-veep, Alaska's rookie Gov. Sarah Palin. Remember how Karl Rove & Company took the 2000 Gore/Lieberman logo and mockingly turned it into "Sore/Loserman?" Well, this year's McCain/Palin logo should be turned into "Too Old/Too Inexperienced." That she's a governor, as the conservative spinners are touting, does not impress. To put things in perspective, the 115,000 votes she received in the general election is not much more than the 85,000 Coloradans who packed Denver's Invesco Field to hear Sen. Barack Obama' brilliant acceptance speech.
Americans will be faced with a very real, very serious problem should McCain win: Palin would be a heartbeat away from the Oval Office. That's a frightening proposition. Should something tragic happen to the 72-year-old McCain, it's absurd to think that the 44-year-old hockey mom with five kids (including an infant with Down syndrome), with less than 2 years as Alaska's Governor and with zero foreign policy experience, is ready to step in and lead America in times of war, terrorism and economic recession. Is there anyone who utters "President Palin" and feels assured? When compared to Sen. Joe Biden, with his 36 years in the Senate and chairmanship of the Foreign Relations Committee, Palin makes Harriet Miers look like William Rehnquist.
McCain's appointment of Palin is not just patently offensive, it's a gargantuan insult to women in particular, especially those who supported Sen. Hillary Clinton. It's a gross miscalculation of what Hill's highly coveted army of 18-million soldiers valiantly fought for. They did not vote for their gal simply because she has tits. Throw a little liberal ideology in here, for Pete's sake. They supported Clinton because of what she stands for. Because she's been a consistent champion of women's causes for 40 friggin' years. They're not looking for some anti-choice, anti-gay, gun-toting, carcass-skinning, under-investigation right-wing evangelical creationist oil whore in Jimmy Choos as a replacement. That McCain believes they are proves yet again how out of touch he is, and it's another shining example of how the GOP truly feels about women and how it underestimates the potency of the issues that matter to them.
The Palin decision is such a mind-blowing mistake that we should nickname her "Waterloo," for her role in McCain's ultimate demise will equal that of this 1815 battle in Napoleon's. The question, albeit the most incredibly obvious one, is, Why would any female Democrat loyal to Clinton feel inspiration and passion for McCain's pretty little Rovian beauty queen? As Gail Collins acutely pointed out in Saturday's NY Times, "I know Hillary Clinton, Hillary Clinton is a friend of mine, and Governor, you're no Hillary Clinton."
And just wait until the race really starts to heat up and Palin's celebrated nothingness gets put under the microscope where it belongs. The double-talking, hypocritical folks who brought us "Why can't we criticize Obama without being called racist?" will be giving us massive doses of "You're all sexists for attacking poor Sarah!"
By the way, the latest Gallup Poll shows a 9-point bounce for Obama following the Democrats' convention and his speech last week. McCain, who had led by a point on Monday, the first day of the convention, now trails by 8 points. Something tells me that with the GOP's "big tent" charade next week, led by Grandpa John and the empty pants-suited beauty queen, this gap will continue to widen straight through to election day.
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