Only four days have passed since John McCain announced Governor Sarah Palin as his running mate. Her relative anonymity has worked for and against McCain’s campaign. With virtually no public track record she has no record to attack. On the other hand, when there is a vacuum of knowledge rumors and nonsense will fill the void. So what are legitimate attacks and questions, and what is not valid on this particular election radar screen? Let us examine the current issues.
Experience – Challenging the experience of the candidate for Vice President is totally and completely legitimate. It was fair for Barack Obama and the issue is fair for Sarah Palin. Voters have a right to know what the experience of their candidates is. For instance, Palin was Mayor of a town with fifty employees and an annual budget of 12 million dollars. The population of Alaska is five percent of Illinois, not to mention the rough politics of Chicago.
Troopergate Scandal – Totally legitimate – The accusation is that Governor Palin misused her office by putting pressure on the State Public Safety Commissioner to fire Palin’s former brother-in-law. The brother-in-law is a State Trooper who has just been divorced from Palin’s sister. This issue speaks to judgment, temperament, ethics, and how the candidate might abuse any other office.
Teen age Pregnancy of Palin’s Daughter – Our first thought was clear – that is personal and should be left out of the campaign. But after examining Palin’s statement on the issue it appears that Governor Palin will use her daughter’s pregnancy to promote pro-life issues. If Governor Palin uses her daughter’s situation for political gain then teen-age pregnancy and planned parenthood are on the table for discussion.
Palin says Iraq War is for Oil – She said it. The Iraq war is a central issue – and the purpose of the war speaks to the ethical use of power and misrepresenting the war to voters. If Palin talks about issues then she should be taken at her word and her positions are fair game.
Palin admits she has not thought much about Iraq – This is fair enough game for discussion. It seems remarkable to this writer that a woman who’s son is in the U.S. Army and about to be deployed to Iraq would not have thought much about the war?????
Palin’s participation in Senator Steven’s fund raising – Governor’s Palin’s name is listed as one of three directors on a 527 corporation with the mission of unlimited funding for Alaska Senator Stevens. Stevens has now been indicted for misuse of campaign contributions for personal gain. Again this issues speaks to the ethical character of Governor Palin and is fair game.
Governor Palin’s rold as head of Alaska National Guard – Governor Palin likes to refer to herself as the Commander in Chief of the Alaska National Guard – the implication is that she has experience being a Commander in Chief. The General commanding the Alaska National Guard says that the Guard Unit has nothing to do with foreign policy. Palin’s distortion of her position is fair game.
On the Pledge of Allegiance – When asked if she thought “Under God” should be in the Pledge of allegiance Palin replied, “Absolutely, if it was good enough for the founding fathers it is good enough for me.” The term “Under God” was added to the pledge in the 1950’s. And we wonder what is wrong with public education.
Being recalled as Mayor of Wasilla, where she was nearly recalled, for firing the Police Chief and Library Director for not supporting her in her 1996 race for Mayor. Governor Palin has a difficult time separating her government position from her personal life. She is fair Game.
The quote on the T-Shirt says “I may be broke but I am not flat busted.”
Here is the reality of Presidential Politics – it is a vicious game where everything will be exposed. Governor Palin has had four days of experience on the national stage. She had no idea what she was getting her family into.
The other issues at hand concerns John McCain’s judgement is selecting Sarah Palin for Vice President. That is a fair issue.