What Palin's Appointment Says about John McCain

Dan Petegorsky

As Karol’s post shows, folks have a lot to say about Sarah Palin herself. But her appointment also tells us a lot about just how cynical and disingenuous John McCain is. Here’s just one example, specially selected for Labor Day.

McCain introduced Palin as follows: “The person I'm about to introduce to you was a union member and is married to a union member and understands the problems, the hopes and the values of working people….”

As I was listening to the radio on Friday waiting for McCain’s announcement, I heard a spot attacking Jeff Merkley using about the most over-the-top anti-union language you could imagine. The spot essentially compared unions unfavorably to the mafia. It’s part of a much larger corporate campaign not only targeting Merkley but aimed at defeating Democratic Senate candidates across the country.

Now, Senator McCain himself has quite a dismal record of support for organized labor and working people in general. He ‘boasts’ a 17% lifetime rating from the AFL-CIO. He recently voted to filibuster the Federal minimum wage hike and the Employee Free Choice Act.

This typifies the cynicism and dishonesty of John McCain: talk as if unions are a good thing when you need to bolster invent your working class creds – even bragging about the union membership of your running mate – while you and your allies continue to block pro-worker legislation and denounce unions in the most vicious terms. A real stand up guy.

Comments

  • joel dan walls (unverified)
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    Mr Petergorsky's argument is off base. This is the United States, Mr. Petergorsky, not (say) France: "working-class" and "unionized" may be synonymous in France, but they're sure as hell not synonymous in the US, where "working-class" has more or less become synonymous with social conservatism of the sort that the GOP has done its best to enflame for the last 40 years.

  • Mssr. Veep TiTiTi (unverified)
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    In picking a young, untested, half-a-term Senator from Illinois to be their nominee for President, the Democrats opened the door for Senator John McCain to pick a fresh faced VP candidate. With the exception of oratory skills, Gov. Palin has MORE EXPERIENCE in the executive branch of government than Obama.

    Nobody cried foul when Obama moved directly from the Illinois State Legislature to the U.S. Senate and a seat on the foreign relations committee.

    Harvard Law Review or Alaskan Beauty Queen; Mayor of Wassila or Community Organizer; Governor of the largest state in the Union or the new Chicago Machine flag bearer?

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    Great, very needed post, Dan. Ignore the unconstructive and keep up the good work.

  • Bill R. (unverified)
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    The Palin choice gives the lie to any notion that McCain is a moderate. Attacking this pairing on the issues is what will sink them. Palin is an outspoken extremist on a whole range of issues, from the environment to abortion/birth control, to education, equal pay and human rights. And on foreign policy she has no clue about anything, a person who isn't informed, doesn't read, has no fund of knowledge, except to back the Bush/McCain policies.

    Palin advocates criminalizing abortion and even the use of birth control like IUDs or Plan B, taking the line that they are murder. She opposes birth control pills and condoms, even for married couples. Palin is opposed to government policies of environmental protection, including an opposition to any protection for polar bears, and would gut the Endangered Species Protection Act. She is opposed to any gay rights protection, considering homosexuality a grievous sin and unworthy of legal protections. She doesn't believe in science and believes Creationism should be taught in the schools, and doesn't accept the science on global warming, believing it is not a human caused phenomenon. Palin and her partner, McCain, are extremists, outside the American mainstream and have no claim to popular support and governance.

    This line of attack is suggested in this post by the president of the polling organization Research 2000.

  • Bert Lowry (unverified)
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    People with less executive experience than Sarah Palin:

    John McCain Barack Obama JFK (when he ran for President) John McCain

    People with more executive experience than Sarah Palin

    George W. Bush (when he ran for President) Jimmy Carter (when he ran for President) Richard Nixon (When he ran for President) Jerry Brown Neil Goldschmidt

    Wait. What was the point of this excercise again? Oh, yeah. There isn't one.

  • mlw (unverified)
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    Man, the trolls are really out on these Palin threads. We should be flattered that they care so much that they patrol the page so religiously from under their bridges.

    It's a deeply cynical selection. She checks a bunch of boxes McCain wants - woman, conservative, attractive, not a threat to his authority. If you need any examples of how inexperienced she is, just look at the way she's handled Troopergate in Alaska. Regardless of whether she did anything inappropriate in the underlying incident, she screwed up the investigation royally, doing everything possible to make herself look guilty. Appointing a political ally to do a "pre-investigation" and tampering with all the witnesses is really a rookie move. It's a classic case of not understanding executive politics.

    In the end, it boils down to this - can anyone really say that she would have been selected if she was a man?

  • Justa_D (unverified)
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    It means McCain has the balls to appoint a woman as VP and Obama doesn't - he simply spit on Hillary voters and told Hillary either she supports him or she will be stuck with her debt.

    BTW - Palin is the ONLY one of the old boys club with any executive experience in government.

    Let the Progressive hate machine proceed into full swing.

  • meagain (unverified)
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    In the end, it boils down to this - can anyone really say that she would have been selected if she was a man?

    Can anyone really say that Obama would have been selected if he were white?

    Answer: Absolutely not!

  • Greg D. (unverified)
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    Selecting Palin may have been a calculated and cynical decision, but it may also turn out to have been brilliant. Too early to tell obviously, but I am reluctantly impressed that McCain and the Repub machine found a way to excite the mega-church masses and at the same time troll for disaffected women voters. In such a close election, McCain may have found a way to gather a few extra percentage points. I hope not.

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    at the same time troll for disaffected women voters

    I don't see this, Greg - and I think Susan Nielsen nails it in her piece in the Oregonian this morning.

    Saying that Palin will help McCain attract women to his side would be like thinking he'd increase his support among blacks by putting Alan Keyes or Clarence Thomas on the ticket.

  • Bill R. (unverified)
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    Why would a disaffected Clinton supporter vote for a ticket that advocates criminalizing abortion, outlawing some forms of birth control, opposing legal protections of equal pay for women,and opposing universal health care? I'm assuming that Hillary Clinton supporters were not voting for her soley because she has XX chromosomes, but McCain seems to think so.

    This choice tells me that John McCain, in choosing a VP who he doesn't know at all(introduced once briefly at a political gathering), overlooking the stronger candidates in his own party, male and female, doesn't put his country first, that he's damn cynical, and that he has poor judgment, politically and otherwise.

  • Steve (unverified)
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    Oh you lefties.

    I heard your talk radio Mike Malloy call Alan Keyes a lunatic, Clarence Thomas a moron and McCain a war criminal. And he used G-- Damn to ratchet it up.

    Nice fodder from the love crowd.

  • E.C. Walla (unverified)
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    Dan, that was my thought immediately. I would think that, if McCain was serious about attracting the "disaffected women voters," he would have chosen someone who more closely resembled the candidate they had backed. Instead he played it safe by catering to the social conservative movement.

    As Hillary put it at the convention, the race isn't about her, but about the support for the Democratic programs dear to her supporters. Palin's choice strips the mask of palatability off the McCain option. When disaffected voters take a close look at Palin, they will be aghast. Any remaining protest vote should at that point be reduced to a write-in campaign or nonvoting.

  • inbf (unverified)
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    It might be cynical. Seems more pandering to me. But that is what politicians do. The DNC and Obama campaign seem more cynical to me by refusing to include Hillary on the dem ticket - after the vote was a tie. That is cynical arrogance of breathtaking levels. It did drive away men and women from the party.

    We'll see if Palin is a brilliant choice. She is a reformer and has taken on her own party and has taken on big $ and raised taxes on big oil, giving tax relief to taxpayers. That might appeal.

    If the republicans start to attack (most likely after the convention) Obama's judgment as far as his connections to corruption in the corrupt Chicago political atmosphere, and contrast that with the reformer-Palin it will be a formidable line of attack.

    We dems set ourselves up for this. The lefty blogs are going crazy - and the spew is embarrassing. It turns out we don't own hope and change also it turns out we are just as guilty of suppression, my-way-or-the-highway, name calling, and irrational hatred. No one is calming down. I bet the repubs are laughing their a$$es off. Some faux progressives are attacking her because she is NOT a stay at home mom. Some say her youngest baby is not hers. If that is true then a bit of verification might help before the wild attacks. I am ashamed of how the dems have handled themselves, from the DNC to the fake roll call to the screeching hate. What is happening to the party?

  • inbf (unverified)
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    This election will not be decided on positions IMO. At least not the traditional D vs R positions. Pro-life is now being honored by dems. Kaine who is strongly pro-life was HONORED by Obama by speaking at the convention on the exact anniversary of women's right to vote. That is seen as symbolic. If Kaine had been Obama's vp pick would the left get as unhinged as it has about Palin's?

    If the left wants certain issues like abortion then we need to work down ticket! We need to make congress not just a rubber stamp roll over do nothing.

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    Joel, at the top of the thread, you said Dan mistook the union = working class prescription, but it was you who mistook it: Read McCain's introduction again. Why is it that the GOP are now pro-green, pro-worker, pro-timeline, pro-woman, and pro-Obama? Right, because their party ideas are wholly bankrupt.

    Susan Nielsen did totally rock it in her piece this morning.

  • JHL (unverified)
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    I can't tell if "Mssr. Veep TiTiTi" is being sarcastic.

    You know, the phrase "Executive Experience" gets kicked around a lot, and it's a mistake to try and equate that with Presidential experience.

    Should a candidate who served as class president in high school be considered having "executive experience"?

    To suggest that the governorship of Alaska engenders ANY experience whatsoever is a joke. Palin was dealing with the nation's smallest legislature (of which both chambers are run by her own party leaders), in a state where the population is about the size of Portland.

    I wouldn't consider Mayor Potter "more experienced than JFK," but apparently John McCain would.

  • afmaction (unverified)
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    Can anyone really say that Obama would have been selected if he were white?

    I'd like to ask the Occidental, Columbia, and Harvard admissions boards the same question. Certainly he was awarded additional points for his ethnicity, but it that what put him over the top at these three institutions?

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    Palin will rightly get a honeymoon period while the country congratulates her and welcomes her onto the stage. But this was a catastrophic choice. In addition to Susan Nielsen's piece, I'd recommend David Frum (the Bush speechwriter who coined the phrase "axis of evil"), who wrote scathingly about the choice.

    Here's I fear the worst harm that may be done by this selection. The McCain campaign's slogan is "country first." It's a good slogan, and it aptly describes John McCain, one of the most self-sacrificing, gallant, and honorable men ever to seek the presidency. But question: If it were your decision, and you were putting your country first, would you put an untested small-town mayor a heartbeat away from the presidency?

    Also, Politico has a nice piece on what the pick says about John McCain.

  • ec.walla (unverified)
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    inbf, so now the election won't be based on positions? What then is it based on? If you phrased it as, "swing voters may easily be swayed to vote based on non-position issues" then I would have to agree. I would not dispute that there will be a large "not voting for a person of color" vote or a "this is just Bush III" vote. But then this style of voting has typified most presidential elections of the past 30 years at least.

    I have faith that most voters do their homework--maybe not as thoroughly as they should, but they do think about the issues. What Palin represents is just the thinnest of veneers. Even the lightest touch from the belt sander of intellectual scrutiny should bring us down to the base wood.

  • ryan (unverified)
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    Mondale/Ferraro? Am I the only one who remembers? It took the GOP 24 years (6 election cycles) to nominate a woman VP, but somehow it's historic.

    And now I'm done. I can't believe anyone is wasting time discussing Palin. The sad thing is that it'll probably work. Enough people will buy the idea of her and ignore how ridiculous the whole situation is. It's a marketing ploy rather than a plan for America, but we're very well conditioned to respond.

  • Kurt Chapman (unverified)
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    Dan, unions make up less than 12% of the private employer workforce. Certainly they comprise a much higher percentage of the stae, county and school district workforces. I wonder if there is a voting trend in those ranks?

    Actually I think that the choice of running mate is very interesting. It could certainly be a platform of the emerging West compared to the established East. Either way, I love reading the pontifactors try to spin it their way. Face it y'all, McCain effectively took Obama-biden off the front page before the Dem convention was 1 day old.

  • Bill R. (unverified)
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    @ inbf -or whatever your name is

    What a completely dishonest post! Kaine does not advocate making women and doctors into criminals. He does not advocate the overturning of Roe v. Wade. As a matter of public policy he does not propose criminalizing the termination of a pregnancy, whereas McCain and Palin do.

    Politics is about public policy. And your claim that positions don't matter is equally dishonest. A vote for McCain/Palin is a vote to privatize soc. security, criminalize abortion and some forms of birth control, a vote to have permanent bases in Iraq, a vote to go to war with Iran ( and possibly Russia when they side with Iran), a vote to dismantle environmental protections, a vote to have more trade agreements that send American jobs overseas, a vote for more tax breaks for the wealthy and the multinational corporation, and a vote against any possibility of having universal health care. Give me a break.. positions don't matter! Get back to your Republican classroom and learn to be a better troll!

    The point is the Republican party has become an extremist party outside the American mainstream and is devoid of any policy ideas to help our country.

  • joel dan walls (unverified)
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    I really love the silly stuff about "executive experience". By definition this phony criterion means that presidents must come from the ranks of mayors, county executives, and governors. Hey, maybe we can even throw in a few rapacious business executives while we're at it.

  • Mr. T (unverified)
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    In the era of "reality television," this pick is perfectly appropriate.

    Cooking as merely your favorite hobby? You can have a television show, book tour, and become the next Julia Childs.

    Just finished business school? Donald Trump will provide you the opportunity to be the CEO of a Fortune 500 corporation.

    "Executive experience"? Yes, mayor of Mayberry and two years as Governor of a state that is red, red, red.

    Hillary Clinton supporters should be especially insulted. That McCain right-wingers are attempting to claim that this softer version of Katherine Harris is somehow worthy of the support of Clinton-voters is insulting.

    ALL AMERICANS should be insulted that McCain and the right-wing Republicans believe we're stupid enough to believe that: 1) This right-wing neophyte is even remotely prepared to be the leader of the free world; 2) That political ideology is irrelevant, and somehow gender trumps policy positions.

    Still, Americans love their reality television shows, and the Horatio Alger myth. Every city council member and alderman could be President of the US.

    McCain's slogan should be: "So You Think That You Could be VP?"

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    Why is it that the GOP are now pro-green, pro-worker, pro-timeline, pro-woman, and pro-Obama?

    It's for the same reason that Gordon Smith's portraying himself as a moderate good buddy of John Kerry and Barack Obama, Jeff. Sure, it's not really who they are, but all they have to do is dupe a small percentage of the electorate into thinking that's true (while maintaining good relations with the right wing of the party) for about seventy days, and they may win the election.

    Remember "compassionate conservative"? You may not have believed that, but a lot of people did. And while John McCain may be this election cycle's bête noir, he's been portrayed for years by the media and many Democrats as a moderate, maverick Republican who doesn't play by the rules, rather than the conservative guy who did things like vote against MLK Day as long as twenty-odd years ago.

  • Steve (unverified)
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    "The point is the Republican party has become an extremist party outside the American mainstream and is devoid of any policy ideas to help our country."

    Oh brother,,, How did they do that?

    And the Michale Moore/DailyKos/MoveOn democrats are moderate and mainstream?

    And if only the country could be run like moderate Portland or San Fransisco?

    How is it that you D's can have such a broad collection of extreme fanatics and yet fantasize about being moderate and mainstream?

    I mean what are the counter parts in the R's equal to your far lefty cabal?

    Moderate Thom Hartman thinks the "consevative corporatists are deliberately bankrupting this country to enrich them". He also says "there's noting of value in this country anymore so the rational invester has to go off shore."

    "The constitution has been destroyed, habeous corpus lost and 911 was an inside job."

    On and on and on I could go with looney left claims.

    Now what are the looney right claims?

    I know the predictable response I'll get.

  • E.C. Walla (unverified)
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    Steve, a looney right claim? I dunno ...

    How about that Palin is qualified for the VP slot, let alone the Presidency?

  • inbf (unverified)
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    Bill r. (or whatever your name is) Did not mean to be 'dishonest' just pointing out that the issues are not clear, spin is sometimes symbolic and therefore meaningful. "Positions" change and laws come about thru the legislative - or that is the way it should be. Money rules both parties and infests all levels of government and that cannot be simply blamed on the 'other' side. Dems have to take responsibility for their actions like the repubs should have. And I still think that Obama's choice of Kaine on his short list and his honoring him at the convention on women's night was highly symbolic. We are dealing with many shades of grey.

    It is amazing -the reaction of the lefty blogs. This may mean that Palin is a brilliant choice. What noise they are making! You would hardly think that in fact McCain is the underdog and that this year should be handed to the dems. Do they think McCain is an actual threat? Almost seems like it.

  • Robert Harris (unverified)
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    Dem's should just let the criticism of Palin rest. Let the media, the blabbering journalists, and incestuous talking heads analyze this selection themselves. It will be fine.

    Instead, focus right now on McCains judgement, impulsiveness and decision making. The fact that he thinks that any decision seen as "out of the box" is the mark of a maverick with integrity, when in fact in many cases, it s mark of lack if intellectual rigor and the tendency to go with his gut rather than his head. (remind you of anyone?)

    In McCains first major decision as the nominee, we should leave it to the media to conclude that he failed. THis is not a reflection of Gov. Palin, (what person in her position would turn down this opportunity) this is about McCain

  • Bob, Big Bob (unverified)
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    So just who could have McCain selected that would have made this post or the one by Karol congratulatory? IOW, what would have made you happy? McCain & ??????n ?

  • E.C. Walla (unverified)
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    Robert,

    You re right. We can let the talking heads decipher this pick ... I just have had more lately questions about the analysts' judgment than about the ability of the voters to do research and actually think.

    I came on here out of sheer incredulousness (is that a word?) at this pick--I've refrained from posting before in a political forum--and felt drawn to respond. Maybe that's why inbf has noted the quantity of Palin posts on blogs: thousands of us are scratching our heads and wondering what McCain could possibly be thinking!

    Speaking for myself, I'm certainly not here because I think McCain is a new, potent threat. It's more in amazement, feeling the need to ask rhetorically, as my daughter might say in today's youth-speak, "Is McCain on crack?!"

  • Susan (unverified)
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    Who knew? McCain really is a techie, into-the-Internet kind of guy after all! I guess he was just trolling the web and found the little hometown site that was set up last year promoting Palin for a gig in the Lower 48: http://palinforvp.blogspot.com/

    Web marketing really does work! I wonder if her resume is on monster.com?

  • Susan (unverified)
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    Who knew? McCain really is a techie, into-the-Internet kind of guy after all! I guess he was just trolling the web and found the little hometown site that was set up last year promoting Palin for a gig in the Lower 48: http://palinforvp.blogspot.com/

    Web marketing really does work! I wonder if her resume is on monster.com?

  • Bill R. (unverified)
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    @Bob McCain would have had a choice that was respected, if not congratulated, if he had chosen from the distinguished, well qualified women and men in his party, thoughtful persons who are not extremist in viewpoint, knowledgeable about the country they aspire to serve, with proven character and leadership qualities. If he wanted to pander to the female vote, at least he could have chosen from the respected female leadership in the Republican party. A Kay Bailey, Hutchinson, or Olympia Snow would have been highly regarded choices.

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    So just who could have McCain selected that would have made this post or the one by Karol congratulatory?

    The point isn't what this says about us, it's what it says about McCain. As others have noted, this is the guy who's shamefully claiming that Barack Obama places politics before country - but in his most important act to date, in which he is selecting the person who may well become the "leader of the free world," he has unquestionably made his decision based on purely tactical, political considerations.

    If John McCain honestly believes that the world is as frightening and dangerous a place now as he says it is, then it's also a shockingly reckless decision. So to get back to your question, "Big Bob," there are other critiques I'm sure I'd have of other VP candidates, since I fundamentally disagree with McCain's values and policies. This pick can only be "congratulated" as a deft move to grab back a couple of days' worth of headlines following the Democratic convention - and also as a brazen display of McCain's true contempt for the American people.

  • Displaced Oregano (unverified)
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    "Can anyone really say that Obama would have been selected if he were white? "

    Obama is where he is because of charisma, writing and speaking ability, honesty, and because he is very, very smart. His race may not have been noticed on Chicago's south side, or in the Illinois State legislature, but it could not have helped him win his Senate seat, and most certainly was not an asset on the journey to this nomination. A white man or woman with his intelligence and personality and oratory/literary skills would easily have done as well. There are such people, but they take their Harvard Law degrees and pursue career paths in private enterprise, where the cash compensation is way better. To suppose that an African-American with a Moslem name is somehow working at an advantage in US politics is absurd.

  • joel dan walls (unverified)
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    ...and meanwhile, whatever happened to the Democrats' 50-state strategy? All indications are that we're back to the electoral map of recent years, with everything hinging on a handful of states....

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    And the Michale Moore/DailyKos/MoveOn democrats are moderate and mainstream?

    The difference, of course, is that Michael Moore and Daily Kos are essentially marginal players within the Democratic establishment.

    In the GOP, the inmates are running the asylum. As an Independent, and a former Democrat, I am basically an Eisenhower or Tom McCall Republican on policy.

    I believe that investment in the national infrastructure is good for business. I believe in tax incentives and in targeted investment to promote small businesses and I believe generally in policies that encourage economic development.

    At one time, that was the Republican platform. But today's Republicans would rather spend time on abortion, god, gays, and guns. Today's Republicans, and Sarah Palin is nothing if not a poster child for modern Republicanism, are less concerned about those things than they are with God, Gays, Guns, and abortion.

    Today's Republicans are not fiscally conservative, as I am, or as Eisenhower was. How else can you account for the record deficits that were run up when the Bush controlled the White House and the GOP controlled both branches of government?

    The only current Republican officeholders who can speak to a person like me -- socially moderate, fiscally moderate to conservative -- are Vicki Berger and Frank Morse.

    What does it tell you about the modern Republican party that it cannot recruit credible candidates for public office, or that its most credible candidates -- Jim Torrey, for example -- would rather run as Independents than get tagged with a toxic party label?

  • Union Rebel Girl (unverified)
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    ON McCAIN AND LABOR McCain can try to pander to the Labor Unions, but we absolutely know better!

    Recent research shows that 60 million U.S. workers would join a Union if they could. It is well beyond time to pass the Employee Free Choice Act (EFCA). For more info and to sign a petition click here: http://www.aflcio.org/joinaunion/voiceatwork/efca/

    And the fact that recent misguided conservative advertising attempts in Oregon are running in direct opposition to what McCain is just now trying to sell (w/Palin) is proof enough that he is completely disingenuous.

    ON PALIN AND WOMEN How can anyone in their right-mind think that a huge faction of Women (particularly Hillary supporters) will jump ship for Palin – I have just one stop sign of a word for you, “Pro-choice.” Palin on a personal level (Woman to Woman) insults in her belief that Women are not intelligent enough to decide what to do with their own bodies. Can anyone please explain to me how it is that Palin votes to kill wolves and polar bears, but professes to be pro-life?!

    For the respect of all Women Palin should have declined the position of VP. She was offered the job simply because of her gender and with her acceptance she relegated herself to nothing more than a pawn.

    It’s like Hillary said, “No way! No how! NO McCain!”

    P.S. Dumbing-down the entire female populace by saying that women support a political candidate simply because of their gender is sexist and insulting. The same goes for discussion suggesting that any Voter support a candidate simply based on their gender, ethnicity, sexual preference, etc…

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    Nobody cried foul when Obama moved directly from the Illinois State Legislature to the U.S. Senate and a seat on the foreign relations committee.

    You can't cry foul about what the citizens and voters of Illinois WANTED. And I'm pretty sure that Obama understood what a U.S. Senator's job entailed whereas Sarah Palin - in a recent interview - stated she had no idea what the Vice President's job actually is. She was one of the first to really question her experience and ability to serve in that position.

    One of the key roles of the Executive Branch is to work with Congress which is why Senators make such great Presidents. LBJ's work to pass the Civil Rights Act of 1964 would never have been so effective had he not been a Senator.

    Having been a Senator - in that job - is far more important than about five minutes as Governor of a teeny-tiny population.

    There is also a huge difference between being able to work with a sixty-person legislature and working with the 535 members of the United States Congress who will rip her to shreds because the innerworkings of which she has no freakin' clue. I'm not even sure she knows that she would be President of the Senate. I'm sure since yesterday she's had time to do a little research, though.

    McCain, yes, he's a Senator. He's never been an executive anything, either. But with him being as old as he is with his health in question, the ability of the Vice President to lead should she need to is a much more important question than when you have a young, healthy candidate.

    Stop saying that her experience is enough to lead this country because if McCain were elected and he died, you would be singing a different tune when this individual who has no real understanding of what is going on in Iraq (her own confession) is suddenly in charge of our national security.

    I'm not faulting John McCain for selecting a woman - I laud him for it - I'm faulting him for picking the wrong one. I'm also faulting her for taking a job she simply does not understand.

  • John Q. Public (unverified)
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    Suggesting that a populist reform governor was selected based purely on her gender is sexist and insulting.

    If you keep demeaning Governor Palin's fitness and ability for national office, you demean all women. Hate her politics if you want to, but don't hate her for being a woman VP candidate.

    It's not like Saint Obama has a track record on foreign affairs, not unless you count his poly-sci undergraduate "specialization" in International Relations.

  • inbf (unverified)
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    Yes, McCain did have other more qualified candidates to choose from. So did the dems for the nominee! It has been one reason the dem pick has been exciting - it is a bit edgy and changey. Now the repubs have that too. It certainly has gotten everyone's attention.

    I just surfed around and the net (I start with blogometer.nationaljournal.com) to the lefty sites and righty sites and PUMA sites and the reaction is loud. She is energizing the blogs and media. Seems lots on the left are just bewildered. Social conservatives are happy and fiscal conservatives are happy and reformists are happy and PUMAs are happy.

    I predict we should not write off her or the value of this choice for McCain. It give him so much. His base is ecstatic and highy energized. She has much to say about reform. I predict it will become a hope and change vs. change by cleaning up and reforming DC. race. The dems start with hope and change and belief and repubs counter with something not just practical, but change via reform. That is how it is looking to me.

    Wonder how this will affect Merkley vs Smith? Unfortunately Smith is playing the surface politics well. Since this is a safely blue state I hope Obama will come here to help Merkley.

    The 50 state 'stragedy' is going to fail. It was a good idea, for the LONG TERM and would work only if the electoral college was eliminated - a reform I'm all in favor of. But until then it really will come down to swing states. Howard Dean is terrible and now will have to show that he started this 'stragedy' only as a power play with the DLC and DCCC.

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    How can anyone in their right-mind think that a huge faction of Women (particularly Hillary supporters) will jump ship for Palin – I have just one stop sign of a word for you, “Pro-choice.”

    Union Rebel Girl, McCain doesn'e need a "huge faction" of women. A lot of elections hinge on just a few percentage points. Only about 3 million popular votes separated George W. Bush and John Kerry in 2004, and fewer than 500,000 separated Al Gore and Bush. It's a numbers game. McCain may have made a big gamble with this one, but it could potentially pay off by getting voters who weren't motivated to come out at all for McCain to go to the polls. And if he can peel off some portion of, say, Catholics who might support the anti-abortion stance more than they do Joe Biden, that's an added advantage.

    It could all crash and burn next week at the Republican convention. That'd be kind of fun to watch. But I don't think Palin's any more unfit to be president than George W. Bush was in 2000. Heck, I don't think Palin's any more unfit to be president than Bush is now, after almost eight years in office. But then, I was one of the people calling for his impeachment (which is what you are supposed to do to resolve the issue of unfit government officers under the US Constitution) years ago.

    Haven't seen anyone in charge of Congress but doing much about that.

  • Kurt Chapman (unverified)
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    Bottom line - the last person to go from the Senate to President-Elect was JFK. American voters don't warm up much to Senators running the country. The Obama-Biden ticket gives us two Senators from an august body with a satisfaction rating below that of Bush. The McCain-Palin ticket gives us one Senator and a Governor. American voters generally prefer governors moving towards the White House.

  • (Show?)

    It's pretty comical reading people complain that Sarah Palin doesn't know what the job of the vice president is. Her real question was, "Someone needs to tell me what the veep does every day."

    That's actually a much more subtle point. What the vice president does every day is determined by what the president wants the vice president to do. Dick Cheney's job every day was quite different from Al Gore's job, and both were far different from what Walter Mondale or Spiro Agnew or Lyndon Johnson did.

    So it is admirable that, before she expressed enthusiasm for the job, she'd want to know what John McCain's vision of the vice presidency is. I assume by now she has an idea.

    Wouldn't it be great if both Obama and McCain told us how they planned to use their vice presidents before we cast our vote for them?

  • (Show?)

    "Face it y'all, McCain effectively took Obama-biden off the front page before the Dem convention was 1 day old."

    If McCain had instead appeared at a press event in garters and a bustier, sung a Marlene Dietrich song and tried to get down with Adam Nagourney, that would have knocked the DNC off the front page as well.

    I don't think the distraction was the kind he was looking for. It's a ridiculous pick. Stepping back from punditland a little bit, the number of people with "wha?" looks on their faces when they heard tells me all I need to know. No real person sits there and says, "Well, she does have more EXECUTIVE experience, there in Alaska for a year and a half. Sure she's qualified!" No woman who believes in Hillary Clinton to the point of cultism is going to say, "Hey, that pro life creationist candidate has a vagina too! Sign me up!" It's absurd.

    It was a desperate, hasty move. It's the ultimate in politics over country. It's the Eagleton moment.

  • (Show?)

    Choosing a woman because she's a woman is sexism. Choosing an underqualified person because she's a woman is sexism.

    If her name was Bob Palin - with equal experience - "he" would be ripped apart even more and on both sides of the aisle. I take that back - "Bob" would be at home in Alaska today because he would never have been selected at all! She was chosen based on demographic, not based on experience and her ability to lead this country is in serious question.

    My neighbors upstairs - a woman a little older than myself, probably in her late 30s and her mother - were ardent Clinton supporters and they are just as baffled and insulted by this decision as I am. They will be voting for Obama.

    Feminism is not about hiring, appointing, selecting or voting for women because of their gender. It is about hiring, appointing, selecting, or voting for someone based on their qualifications and ability REGARDLESS of gender. THAT is why Hillary Clinton garnered 18,000,000 votes. That, coupled with her ability to understand issues facing women just a little bit better than men because she has faced them, but that alone would only have taken her so far. At the same time, Barack Obama understands the plight of the single mother better than anyone whose run on either ticket. Sarah Palin may understand the issues facing women, but she either doesn't think that they are problems or doesn't care to fix them.

    Anti-choice standing aside, she does not believe in equal pay for equal work. I can't fathom what kind of person - let alone what kind of person WITH THREE DAUGHTERS - could feel that way. Here's an idea. I say if they're elected, we go ahead and dock her pay by 15% and see how she feels then. The nomination of Sarah Palin slaps in the face what women have spent the better part of a century trying to accomplish. So don't you dare call us sexist just because we don't like her - I'm sure she's a very nice person, but it's her ideology we can't freakin' stand.

    She might be the "right" choice for the Republican ticket - if you all can get on board with that, that's your prerogative. But she is NOT the right choice for this country - she is not the right person to represent women and women's issues. She is not the right person to have even the most remote possibility of becoming Commander in Chief. I really don't care what her gender is, she's simply the wrong person for the job.

  • Lospenegana! (unverified)
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    torridjoe,

    "She has a vagina too" dismissiveness will cost the Democrats this election. Sarah Palin is more than her genitalia.

    And those commenters who believe that WOMEN (in aggregate) have a unified view on reproductive rights or nationalized healthcare need to read the party/gender breakdowns on current opinion polls.

  • YoungOregonMoonbat (unverified)
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    Wow, a bunch of uptight political junkies who need to get laid in my opinion.

    All I can say is, Obama will have a harder time getting the white male vote regardless of whether it is white collar, blue collar, pink collar or ummm...Popped collar.

    I hate to be typically male, but Palin is smoking hot to say the least. My God would I love to see her on TV for the next 4 years.

    I can see why liberal women and feminists despise this pick. Palin is everything that they are not:

    1. Attractive (I love all those sexy pics of Palin and so do all my 18 to 184 year old male friends)
    2. Congenial (not a raving bitch)
    3. Married to what my Mother considers a "Hunk and a half"
    4. Has 5 beautiful children (3 girls and 2 boys)
    5. Skyrocketed through the political ranks in Alaska (When was Vera Katz ever Governor of Oregon? Oh wait, she is too much of a left wing fringe player to be one...Ouch!)
    6. Has a very good damn chance of being the first female Vice President

    Finally, the only issue I see this race coming down to is what dress Sarah Palin is wearing and what high heels she is wearing.

    As for Palin's experience, her choice in shoes conveys that she has more experience to run this country than Hillary Clinton ever will. I am sorry, I just don't see a woman who chooses a God awful prison orange jumpsuit as the next President of the United States of America.

    BTW, this post is meant to be taken lightly.

  • Bill R. (unverified)
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    I think "youngoregonmoonbat" is a great name for a McCain slime troll, don't you?? Likewise for "lospenegana"!

    I think you folks need to go back for further training from the McCain campaign.

    Pathetic!

  • (Show?)

    I think people are vastly underestimating the amount of skill and stamina it takes to actually earn "Miss Congeniality."

    When I was seven, I was in a Girl Scout pageant in Montana (similar to Alaska, you know) and boy, was I wiped out. I had never worked so hard in my life. The standing, the combing, the primping. Oy!

    It was exactly the kind of experience world leaders needs for ah, let's see, for about .05% of their jobs. Unless they're Reagan, then it might have been more....

    And just think, McCain will have a former rodeo queen in the First Lady's office. We can all sleep better now.

  • Jim Johnson CRS (unverified)
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    Sarah Palin is the change that is needed in Washington. Partisan politicians on both sides of the aisle better watch out!

  • (Show?)
    It was a desperate, hasty move. It's the ultimate in politics over country. It's the Eagleton moment.

    Thomas Eagleton was seen as a safe bet by the establishment Democrats. A good-looking, centrist Catholic from Missouri with four years in the Senate, he'd campaigned for Muskie in the early days of the primaries. Eagleton was suggested to George McGovern by Senators Ted Kennedy, Walter Mondale, and Gaylord Nelson, all of whom had turned down offers to share the ticket, and after a number of others had refused and Boston Mayor Kevin White had been rejected by Kennedy.

    Of course, last year it finally came out that Eagleton was also the Democratic senator who'd told Robert Novak during the primaries that McGovern would never win the nomination because he was "for amnesty, abortion and legalization of pot" and that once Catholic America found that out he'd be dead.

    Eagleton was a disaster -- and it's true he was a hasty pick -- but he was the guy the party wanted, not the choice of the nominee.

  • (Show?)

    My mom, a very big Clinton supporter, is now even more of an Obama supporter. She is so insulted that they would think that Clinton's supporters would run to them now because they have a woman on the ticket.

    Yes, women are split on the topics of abortion and universal health care. But when you look at the women who supported Clinton, overwhelmingly you're going to find they support women's reproductive rights and universal health care. And that's who we're talking about - we're not talking about women on the right who were already going to vote for the Republican ticket.

    The 50 state 'stragedy' is going to fail. It was a good idea, for the LONG TERM and would work only if the electoral college was eliminated - a reform I'm all in favor of. But until then it really will come down to swing states. Howard Dean is terrible and now will have to show that he started this 'stragedy' only as a power play with the DLC and DCCC.

    It is not going to fail - it is already doing wonders. The 50 State Strategy is about more than president. It's about state legislators, governors, U.S. Representatives, and U.S. Senators. We already saw huge wins in 2006 thanks to the 50 State Strategy. And we saw increased Democratic turnout thus far in states that we might lose this time for President - but will have gotten closer to winning than ever before. And chances are we will have picked up more Congressional seats, state legislative seats, etc. than we have in a long time in those states as well.

    Do you think the Republicans just took over the country one day? No. The right wing spent 11 years taking over the Party and then about the same amount of time to take over the country. Howard Dean and the "Democratic wing of the Democratic Party" are doing the same thing - and we're doing it much faster and without alienating as many people.

    Howard's doing exactly what we should be doing - competing everywhere. We don't just give up a state, we send them resources and build their Party. That Party then has the ability to engage their volunteers. Who are then out speaking to their neighbors and developing relationships (via the Neighbor to Neighbor program, which the Obama campaign is also using). Those relationships then bring in more volunteers and more voters, as well as give you a better educated electorate. Each election cycle that passes, you see more and more benefits from this program. The fact that we began all this in 2005 and were able to see big victories the next year speaks volumes about the program's success.

    You can't compete where you don't show up. And if you haven't shown up for a while, you can't expect miracles overnight.

  • inbf (unverified)
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    Jenni, yes, I should have clarified - 50 state will fail for the national election. the DCCC worked with the DNC (tho they were extremely critical of Dean) and did a good job last election. I wish congress had followed thru. I still think with the electoral college in place it will fail in the national election.Not saying the dems will lose - it should not be too close to call but it is.

    cc, You said "Choosing a woman because she's a woman is sexism. Choosing an underqualified person because she's a woman is sexism.

    If her name was Bob Palin - with equal experience - "he" would be ripped apart even more and on both sides of the aisle. I take that back - "Bob" would be at home in Alaska today because he would never have been selected at all! She was chosen based on demographic, not based on experience and her ability to lead this country is in serious question. "

    You realize this is a very harsh version of what Ferraro said? Obama extremists accused her of racism and screeched all over about it throwing obscenities and bigoted names at her. I hope you were one who righteously defended her!

    I do not think it is sexism that she is a vp pick and I do not think it is racism that BO is a pres nominee. I do think each taps into a demographic. Is is some form of bigotry to pick an old white insider politician as one's vp? Are old white experienced guys insulted and huffing about it?

    Interesting several commenters have noted their "mom's" views. Sigh. If you surf around you will see that Palin will get a significant number of Hillary supporters. Maybe not in hyper happy progressive Portland. It makes Portland a fun place to live, but still, we are part of the USA and we have to take that into account. Most women are not one issue voters. The dems need to face this or they will be left confused...."wha? wha happened? but my mom voted Obama....."

    cc - I have not heard that Palin does not support equal pay for women. Does that include other minorities? Where did you read that, what news source? Seriously, I would like to learn more about her record.

    Talkleft.com is a site that is good for information and debate. They have been vetting her today and there's lots of information on her. The site is the ONLY site I have found where dems take on issues while having highly differing views while not degenerating into name calling and bullying. There are Obama supporters Clinton supporters, PUMAs and those who will vote McCain and those Nader. Scroll down to the part about her positions on Abortion Iraq etc.

  • Steve (unverified)
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    Posted by: Oregon Independent | Aug 30, 2008 12:32:11 PM "The difference, of course, is that Michael Moore and Daily Kos are essentially marginal players within the Democratic establishment."

    Oh what a cherry pick. I said Michael Moore/Daily Kos & MoveOn, which you ignored.

    Moore/Kos/MoveOn/George Soros/Arianna Huffington/Keith Olberman,,,,are they all essentially marginal players within the Democratic establishment?

    Not hardly. That is the democrat establishment and all of your politicians are either with them or afraid of them.

    And my greater point you ignored.

    I mean what are the counter parts in the R's equal to your far lefty cabal? I mean what are the counter parts in the R's equal to your far lefty cabal? I mean what are the counter parts in the R's equal to your far lefty cabal?

    You all seem to want the country could to be run like Portland or San Fransisco?

    How is it that you D's can have such a broad collection of extreme fanatics and yet fantasize about being moderate and mainstream?

    Moderate Thom Hartman thinks the "consevative corporatists are deliberately bankrupting this country to enrich them". He also says "there's noting of value in this country anymore so the rational invester has to go off shore."

    "The constitution has been destroyed, habeous corpus lost and 911 was an inside job."

    On and on and on I could go with looney left claims.

    Now what are the looney right claims?

    If you think it is looney to think Palin is qualified to VP then you are certainly nuts up for thinking Obama is qualified for P.

  • LT (unverified)
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    Sorry to disappoint you, Steve, "Moore/Kos/MoveOn/George Soros/Arianna Huffington/Keith Olberman,,,,are they all essentially marginal players within the Democratic establishment?

    Not hardly. That is the democrat establishment and all of your politicians are either with them or afraid of them. "

    but the "Democratic establishment" such as it is, is the folks who were at the convention, the DNC chair (who doesn't always agree with fellow Chicagoan Rahm Emanuel of the Congressional leadership), etc. The idea that bloggers, commentators, the film maker from my native state of Michigan, etc. do our thinking for us is laughable.

    Steve, you have obviously not been paying attention --- the GOP Platform Comm. made a decision this year to have proper usage in their platform, hence they will mention the DEMOCRATIC Party in their platform, and save "democrat party" for only verbal usage. A former RNC chair was quoted in the newspaper announcing the change.

  • (Show?)

    Moore/Kos/MoveOn/George Soros/Arianna Huffington/Keith Olberman,,,,are they all essentially marginal players within the Democratic establishment?

    Yes. And I'm not a Democrat.

    Honestly, I'm not interested in getting into a pissing contest with someone who believes that a person who does not believe in evolution, whose second-greatest job qualification involves a part-time job as mayor of a village, and whose greatest job qualification is 18 months as Governor of a state whose population is smaller than the Portland metro region.

    Is Tom Potter qualified to be Vice President for a guy with one foot in the grave?

    As for Obama's qualifications... he was vetted in one of the most competitive primaries in US History. His choice for vice president has roughly the same credentials as the GOP's #1 guy, and even though I remain unimpressed with the pick, at least I can't chalk it up as a cynical attempt to spin a news cycle.

    The party that gave us "Heckuva job, Brownie", and tried to put Harriet Miers on the Supreme Court has now given us a supremely unqualified and unserious candidate for the second highest office in the United States.

    As for my own political leanings... I'm a good government guy. My political party has given roughly equal endorsements and nominations to Democrats and Republicans. All we ask is that the candidates be qualified for the office that they seek. And I hate to lay it out for ya, sparky, but Sarah Palin makes Dan Quayle look like a good decision.

    This might be the worst pick for vice president since Perot put Stockdale on the ticket.

  • inbf (unverified)
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    Jenni, LT, anyone... I have a couple of questions, sorry if it is a bit off thread. Campaigns for accepted races for congress, once the DCCC has approved them and the campaigns have already raised funds recieve $ directly from the DCCC, right? The DNC provides $ for local organizing for the presidential election. Is that correct? (I'm not being snarky about this. I'm still learning) So does that mean in the 50 state strategy that the states receive funds based on the number of electoral votes they have, their populations or what? Does the DNC direct $ to the DCCC? For example, does the Merkley campaign recieve $ from both the DNC and DCCC or just the DCCC? What about representatives?

    If Obama campaign does not take federal campaign finance funds does that mean that there will be more $ that the DNC can funnel to the DCCC? If the Obama campaign does not take federal campaign funds (which they are not) then who directs the $ allocation, them or the DNC? Is Dean going to restrict $ from swing states in order to follow the 50 state strategy? Is he counting on huge fundraising by Obama team to provide extra $ for allocation to the DCCC?

    Sorry for the many questions. If you know of a site where I could get unbiased info I would appreciate the link. Or sites with differing biases (since bias is everywhere, at least with differing biases I can add the biased facts together, subtract the biases and see what is left over)

  • (Show?)

    All you folks who keep obsessing on how small Alaska's population is do realize that it has more people than Vermont don't you?

    That is, the same Vermont whose Governor, Howard Dean, was the frontrunner for the Democratic nomination for President until the Iowa caucus four year's ago.

    The same Howard Dean who now heads the Democratic National Committee.

  • LT (unverified)
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    The 50 State Strategy is not just "money is all that matters". It is also a philosophy that there is more to winning elections than just spending money--although money is important. It is an attitude contrary to the old "we professionals will target, and if your race is not a target race then sorry, your race doesn't count".

    It is the philosophy spelled out in Dean's book YOU HAVE THE POWER!.

    Many Democrats were tired of hearing that the battle ground states or races were well known in advance and no one had the right to question them. Dean says in his book "If you are looking for leadership, look in the mirror!".

    I don't know the financial details, but I do know there is argument between various factions over whether targets are the way to go. Don't expect me to have a lot of respect for either DSCC or DCCC given previous behavior.

    One reason behind this change is the Colorado result in 2004. Below the level of president, Colorado went Democratic in 2004, electing a US Senator, taking over legislative leadership, etc. During the convention, I heard someone (Sen. Salazar?) from Colorado saying that the Kerry campaign pulled all their resources out of Colorado sometime in October--had they stayed, they might have won. Obama's fundraising will make it easier to contest all sorts of states.

  • LT (unverified)
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    It's pretty comical reading people complain that Sarah Palin doesn't know what the job of the vice president is. Her real question was, "Someone needs to tell me what the veep does every day."

    Get that woman the excellent audio book of David McCullough's TRUMAN biography!

  • (Show?)

    inbf:

    Not a problem. I can answer some of this, and I'm sure others will chime in.

    Campaigns don't really get approved by the DCCC (Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee) or the DSCC (Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee). The two bodies look at the candidates, their chances, etc. and decide whether or not they're going to put their money and time into the race. Each race gets different levels of support based on all the criteria the organization has set forth. They'll give money directly to the campaign, but they'll also do independent expenditures, such as mailers, ads, etc.

    The campaigns will also raise money on their own, as these are funds that they get to decide how to spend.

    The DNC spends its money in a variety of ways. It gives money to the state parties. They also employ staffers in each of the states as part of the 50 State Strategy. These staffers work with the state party and are overseen by the state party, but ultimately their boss is the DNC. Their job is to organize on the ground - get the neighbor to neighbor programs going, organize and run canvasses and phone banks for candidates, etc. They are there to support Democrats from the legislative level on up (may also include local levels where they have partisan races, but I'm not certain).

    In 2006, I worked closely with our DNC staffer Jesse Bontecou. Multnomah County was one of his assigned counties, and I was the Field Director for the Multnomah County Dems. We worked together to get volunteers on the phones and out knocking on doors for Governor Kulongoski and our legislative candidates.

    Funds from the DNC depend on many things - how many staff members you had before the program (some states got more help because they had almost no staff), how successful the program has been, etc.

    The DNC spends the bulk of its money doing independent expenditure work, supporting the state parties, etc. Some big expenditures as of late have been the staffers for the 50 states and getting the VAN (Voter Activation Network) voter file system set up nationwide. I've not dug through the FEC filings, so I can't say for certain, but I would not be surprised if the DNC gives some funds to the DSCC and DCCC. The FEC database isn't nearly as easy to use as Oregon's ORESTAR, so I don't look at it that often.

    By Obama not taking public financing, he has to raise money on his own. Thankfully, his average contribution is very, very low and he's been able to raise money from more than a million people - completely unheard of before now. However, that also means that the DNC and his campaign are not limited to the amount of money they can spend on the race.

    The Obama campaign decides how to spend their money. The Obama campaign and the DNC work together on how to spend the DNC funds. And since Obama's already endorsed Dean and the 50 State Strategy, the work that is already done will continue.

    But that's all separate from the DCCC. They raise their own money, choose which U.S. House races to spend it on, etc. Same with the DSCC - they raise their own funds, choose which U.S. Senate races to spend it on, etc.

    The DNC will continue to put money into the 50 State Strategy, since the bulk of those funds are staffers on the ground working in the states. These staffers are working heavily with the Obama campaign. They've spent their time since the 2006 election building up all the networks and resources so that now they can rely on them to turn out the volunteers needed to canvass and call voters. Where presidential campaigns in the past had to bring in staffers who were new to the state, had to start from square one, etc., the Obama campaign is able to use what the DNC and the state parties already have set up in the states. And those resources and networks continue after Election Day, which benefits all of us in 2 years when election time rolls around again.

    I'm sure that Kari, Jenny Greenleaf, etc. can chip in with even more information. But they're probably a bit tired from Denver and might not see your question right away. I hope I was at least able to give you an outline of how things work. Please feel free to ask any follow up questions you have.

  • LT (unverified)
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    OI, I agree with you EXCEPT for one thing. Not sure what will happen in the future, but so far Palin looks more mature than Quayle--she didn't practically jump up and down when being named. Time will tell when she will have her first "deer in the headlights" moment. Most candidates have such moments at one time or another. There is only one VP debate scheduled, but there will likely be joint appearances, speaking to the same gatherings/ conventions, etc. We'll see how she does.

    For now, McCain finally broke the nomination glass ceiling that Democrats broke 24 years ago. And I'd take someone with a lot to learn over a know-it-all like Danny Boy Quayle any day of the week!

  • inbf (unverified)
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    Wow, Jenni, thanks. Very informative - I'll have to spend some time with this when I'm not so tired and partied out! I have family who worked with the DCCC (they call it the D/Ccubed) in Chicago for (can't remember her first name) Duckworth in the '06 election. It seems in that case they needed to see that the candidate was serious and was ideologically in line and passed several fundraising targets on its own before giving $ to her campaign. They must choose one candidate and hence all the accusation of 'conservative' and 'progressive' - often in the eye of the beholder and sometimes not too easy to discern?

    A couple more quick questions (and I really have not absorbed all of your gracious post yet so this is an aside)... does the DNC give funds to all of the primary candidates? Equally? Of the initial, what was is, 8 dem primary candidates did all receive DNC funds - or none at that point? It seems more likely that the DNC holds out on allocating any $ to presidential candidates until the primary is over and the nominating convention is past. The DNC. Maybe I'm confused. Maybe the DNC only allocates to the structural organizations that support a presidential campaign on the ground in the states. The campaigns buy the ads etc and the DNC provides the structure. So the 50 state strategy means that there is structure in every state for the presidential election - and has nothing to do with the down ticket structures? They must be intertwined.

    I know the DNC has been in the tank for one candidate for 6 months. How could that have affected the primary?

    Also, is it because of the internet driven fundraising that Dean pioneered that the 50ss challenged the old way of raising $? Are there other differences between the DNC and DLC? I will assume a pro DNC bias from you but have a lot of respect and gratitude that you are so willing to debate and provide information! (And you can assume a pro DLC bias from me but I'm willing to learn and change my mind.....as a last resort)

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    That is, the same Vermont whose Governor, Howard Dean, was the frontrunner for the Democratic nomination for President until the Iowa caucus four year's ago.

    How small the population is in Alaska is only a tiny piece of it. She's been the governor of a small population for a very short period of time. And the state that she is the governor of is so unlike all the other states in our country, including how the state's income is generated. That means that many of the experiences other governors would have, she would not have experienced. There is no state sales tax and no individual income tax. Because of petroleum revenue, Alaska has the lowest individual tax burden in the state. It is primarily those petroleum revenues that run the state.

    Vermont, on the other hand, has a sales tax and an income tax. It is heavily reliant on taxes from individuals and businesses. This means a governor in Vermont is going to go through much of the exact same experiences as governors in other states. All county services in Vermont are funded by the state, which means the governor's office has a lot more responsibility than is typical.

    Howard also served in elected office for much longer, which greatly increases his experience.

    Howard was in the Vermont State Legislature from 1982-1986. In 1986, he was elected lieutenant governor.

    In 1991, the governor had a heart attack and Howard became governor.

    He was subsequently elected to five 2-year terms as governor.

    From 1994-95, he served as chairman of the National Governors Association.

  • inbf (unverified)
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    since I cannot figure out how to post a link (even with the oh so very user friendly easy instructions below) I wanted to direct attention to a little fun on the subject. On youtube, Red State Update and see their take on Palin.

  • (Show?)

    The DNC is uninvolved in the presidential election (as well as partisan primaries in general) until there is a presumptive nominee. At that point, they spend time and money on that candidate's race. Before that, they do general Democratic Party building activity that gets them prepared for the General Election.

    That work on the ground as part of the 50 State Strategy benefits all our Democratic candidates once the primary is over. Through that, we have people out talking to voters about state legislative candidates, Secretary of State, U.S. House, U.S. Senate, and president. It even helps candidates like myself who are Democrats, but running in non-partisan positions. We have volunteers who are well trained, we've been through all sorts of trainings about running for office and raising funds, we have access to the voter file, etc.

    The DSCC and DCCC will often times try to find a candidate to run for a position. They did this with Gordon Smith's seat - they sought out Merkley and when he agreed to run, they supported him. They continue that support now, although they have said they would have supported Novick had he won.

    If they don't find a candidate, then they look at the candidates in the race - how is the campaign doing, how much money have they raised, what does the registration numbers look like, etc. There's a lot they take into consideration before supporting a candidate (and I don't always agree with their outcome).

    Really, Dean's power comes from the people. He realized that by making his campaign work from the bottom up, making things easily available online, and the like, he made people feel they owned the campaign. That ownership meant people were more willing to give to the campaign. It was a policy all around of putting the people on the ground first that helped him raise so much money online. And he's continued that to the DNC where he started the 50 State Strategy. He knew that his strength was that he had supporters and volunteers on the ground who were well trained, had plenty of materials, etc. But he knew that the problems were so many people working outside their home area, things not being coordinated by on the ground supervisors, etc.

    He learned from his mistakes and came up with the 50 State Strategy. It had all the strengths from his campaign - getting resources to every state, making things available to supporters, genuinely appreciating those on the ground, etc. At the same time, it fixed some of the mistakes - the Neighbor to Neighbor plan gets people working in their own neighborhoods that they know the best, field directors were put on the ground to oversee efforts so we're not contacting the same voters a million times a day/week (which is likely what killed Dean's chances in Iowa), etc. He also put forth a voter file system, which had already been used by the Party in some states, that would be used to keep track of what we're doing.

    The DNC has gone from an organization that I felt didn't appreciate all of us at the grassroots to an organization that sees us as their greatest strength. The DNC now realizes you can't go in once, lose, and then give up - sometimes it takes a few tries to build up the base. You can't win if you don't try, and that's what we did in too many areas for too long - in 2006 we won areas the DNC and other organizations had been telling us we'd never win.

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    I'll be sure to check this thread tomorrow to see any follow up questions you might have. I'm now headed off to bed. :)

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    Here's a question for you, Jack: What does it say about the Republican Party that social conservatives managed to bully Mr Straight-Talk Express into picking a running mate based on a single policy issue?

    As I said earlier, I can remember a time when being a Republican meant, first and foremost, that you were fiscally conservative. And fiscal conservatism at that time did not mean that taxes are inherently evil. It meant that you knew how to balance a budget and prioritize. If you had to raise taxes during wartime to avoid passing off an $8 trillion debt to your children and grandchildren, you did it.

    When was the last time a Republican candidate for any office anywhere asked his or her constituents to sacrifice for the good of the country and for future generations?

    I believe that you are someone who loves this country, and who loves the Republican Party. But doesn't it concern you that the GOP has largely become a caricature of itself over the last few decades?

    Why doesn't the GOP produce more Frank Morse's or Vicki Berger's these days?

  • fbear (unverified)
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    Jack,

    Once again, you're really reaching.

    Number one, Howard Dean wasn't hand-picked for his spot as front-runner, he workeed hard to get there.

    Number two, Howard Dean was Governor of Vermont for ELEVEN + YEARS, not less than two years. Before that, he was Lieutenant Governor for four years.

    Number three, Howard Dean was not under investigation for official misconduct at the time he was the front-runner for the nomination.

    Sarah Palin is currently un-qualified for national office. She has recently stated that she doesn't know much about Iraq, which just happens to be the biggest issue facing the country at this time.

  • inbf (unverified)
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    thanks again Jenni. I am very grateful for your responses and information. Much of this confirms (more articulately and with more detail) what I have already learned and there are, for me, some very good information that is new to me. I'm sure I should know who you are, so please excuse my ignorance.

    So, if the DNC stays out of the primary race, then why did the DNC come out so strongly in favor of one candidate to the point of obviously attempting to undermine the other candidate? Why did the DNC selectively decide to punish only two states when there were several who moved their primaries? Why did the RBC apply rules in a biased way? Since Donna Brazile stated that the aim of the DNC is to change the demographic of the democratic party, does this underly the discord between the DNC and the DLC/Bill Clinton wing of the party too? Should the DNC change and pressure the rules of the nominating convention to disallow a roll call? Since they did, is that fair?

    Why did the new 50 state strategy authors reject the previous strategy outright and not try to work WITH it and transition harmoniously? If Dean is so successful with his new form of fundraising then why do they even care about Senator Clinton's donors? It seems he wants the Clinton wing to work FOR him but now with him and pressures and threatens if Bill and Hillary do not.

    As I understand it the DNC is the body responsible for fully vetting the candidates, but am not sure when that is supposed to happen. When do they finally have all necessary documentation? And is that documentation available for review? If it is available for review is that by the courts or other government agencies?

    I assume you are in the Portland area? Would you be willing to meet me for coffee and discussion since this discussion is very off the thread topic? I assume you are very busy and could easily understand your not wanting to. If so you can email me. Thanks.

  • Harry Kershner (unverified)
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    Steve said: "Oh you lefties. I heard your talk radio Mike Malloy call Alan Keyes a lunatic, Clarence Thomas a moron and McCain a war criminal. And he used G-- Damn to ratchet it up. Nice fodder from the love crowd and "And the Michale Moore/DailyKos/MoveOn democrats are moderate and mainstream? And if only the country could be run like moderate Portland or San Fransisco?" and "Moore/Kos/MoveOn/George Soros/Arianna Huffington/Keith Olberman,,,,are they all essentially marginal players within the Democratic establishment? Not hardly. That is the democrat establishment and all of your politicians are either with them or afraid of them."

    First of all, Steve, there are few if any "lefties" on BO or in the DP. Guys like you should stop being greedy and accept the gift of a right-of-center corporatist hack every four years. Michael Moore is the only one on your list who any reasonably knowledgeable person would consider to be to the left of the US center (although he is a moderate by international standards), and he has turned into a partisan hack this election season. The US is functionally politically illiterate, and that's why move-on and its ilk are considered "far left" by anyone.

    Second, Mike Malloy speaks for me on the topics you quote him on, but he is not pro-Democrat, and your listening powers should be called into question if you believe he is.

    Third, San Francisco (I'm assuming that "San Fransisco" is a mis-spelling rather than some small town in Idaho) is more of a libertarian city than a "far left" one, and Portland has a long way to go before it can be considered to be left of the international center.

    Lastly, I wish "Moore/Kos/MoveOn/George Soros/Arianna Huffington/Keith Olberman" were the DP "establishment", even if I disagree with them about the current election. The DP establishment is closer to you than to them.

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    inbf:

    Michigan and Florida were punished not just because they moved their primary date - but because they moved their primary date before February 5th. Only four states were allowed to have their primary/caucus before February 5th - Iowa, New Hampshire, Nevada, and South Carolina.

    Oregon was threatened with losing delegates when we began work to move our primary to February 5th (because we'd actually get our ballots well before Feb 5th). As such, we left our date alone.

    Both Michigan and Florida could have moved their election day to February 5th and they wouldn't have been sanctioned. Instead, they chose to break the rules even though they had already been told the consequences would be.

    Other states moved their election day, but stayed behind the February 5th date, so they weren't punished as they broke no rules.

    The DNC had to stay strong on this issue if they're ever going to be able to change the nominating calendar significantly. Many of us want a rotating system where there are regions that vote at the same time, and it rotates which region goes first. But the only way to do this is states follow the rules.

    I honestly don't pay attention to all the infighting that has gone on in between the DNC/DLC and the Clintons and Dean. I have so many other important things to do, that it's way down on my list of things to pay attention to. So I'm not a good person to ask about any of that.

    As far as the DNC vetting candidates, I'm not sure what you mean.

    I do live in the Portland area - I'm out in Gresham. I'm not certain what I'd have time to get together to talk on this, though, as I'm running a campaign for Gresham City Council right now as well as running a business and raising a 6 year-old. So things are a bit busy for me right now. I could answer things by email, though. So we don't have to open up either of our addresses to spam, you can message me through my campaign site and then I can email you back directly: http://votejenni.com/contact

  • Steve (unverified)
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    Harry, Your social reach is way too narrow if you honestly believe all of that.

  • inbf (unverified)
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    Thanks again Jenni, I guess I'll have to find more information about the internal power struggles and their effects on this primary elsewhere, but I learned a lot from you and I thank you. Best of luck with your campaign - Go Jenni!

    About the DNC promoting Obama it was not the issue that two out of four states were punished (why not all? equally? what was it about those two in particular that deserved to be singled out for punishment?) but the pressure for one candidate to submit to their will for that candidate to leave the race. And Pelosi saying things like "GOD" has "given" us Obama. And much more. Well, some other time.

    Again, best wishes.

  • LT (unverified)
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    inbf--do you believe that rules are rules?

    "(why not all? equally? what was it about those two in particular that deserved to be singled out for punishment"

    The Florida legislature set their primary outside the window for early primaries--both parties sanctioned them for this.

    Certain Michigan politicians wanted to make a case that Michigan should be one of the early states--so they moved their primary way ahead, and some of the candidates took their names off the ballot as a result.

    THAT is why Michigan and Florida were punished--no other states did that.

    And about the Pelosi remark, hadn't heard that. She tried to stay out of the debate from what I could see.

    In partisan politics, "the pressure for one candidate to submit to their will for that candidate to leave the race" happens more often than some would like to admit. But that isn't what happened in this case, given that Hillary got the big speech at the convention, the roll call vote, etc.

  • LT (unverified)
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    One more thing--as someone who once was a national delegate, state central comm. member, active in the process of rewriting rules.

    The Democratic Party has a system of caucuses and primaries where the voters in those states choose the nominee, not any party organization.

    So I have no clue what this refers to, "As I understand it the DNC is the body responsible for fully vetting the candidates, but am not sure when that is supposed to happen. "

    The Democratic National Committee is responsible for electing the DNC chair, setting party rules, organizing the convention. VOTERS are given the role of "vetting" the candidates.

  • Harry Kershner (unverified)
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    Steve said: "Harry, Your social reach is way too narrow if you honestly believe all of that."

    Steve: I have a wide stance.

    Here's why you guys should shut up while you're ahead: Joe Biden has been one of the leading congressional supporters of U.S. militarization of the Middle East and Eastern Europe, of strict economic sanctions against Cuba, and of Israeli crimes. He was perhaps the single most important congressional backer of the Bush invasion of Iraq. Obama's decision to pick Biden negates one of his biggest advantages in the general election, his supposed "better judgment" on the occupation, which probably was decisive in his victory over Clinton. (Biden, Iraq, and Obama's Betrayal)

    Obama/Biden is a gift to the right-wing from their Democrat cousins. Instead of checking that donkey's teeth, you should be feeding it sugar. Even if you lose, you win.

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    Actually Joel, union density is even lower in France than in the U.S.

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    "Steve": Where are the loonie Right claims?

    <h2>http://www.freerepublic.com</h2>

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