Not Taking A Page From Hillary: Why Palin's Speech Erred

In his first reaction to Sarah Palin's speech last night, Chris Matthews said something interesting, and in my view, correct - there was no Hillary Clinton in Sarah Palin's speech last night.

When backed against the political wall in February by an attacking, hostile and sexist Media and a string of lopsided primary and caucus defeats - Hillary Clinton became a fighter, but not for herself, but for working class voters and women. She championed issues and talked about their concerns. Before our very eyes, Hillary Clinton became a great politician. By contrast, while Palin offered her appealing biography, she did not talk about the issues the working class voters care about. Instead she gave a sort of Republican version of Ann Richards' 1988 Democratic Convention keynote speech. Of course Republicans loved their red meat, but it was a missed opportunity for Palin (and for the McCain campaign that decided what would be in this speech.) More . . .

What Sarah Palin could have done last night was discuss herself and introduce how she cares about the issues of working class Americans. That would have expanded John McCain's electoral base. Instead, Palin delivered the speech prepared (with some adjustments of course) for the generic VP candidate -- the typical red meat speech.

The speech did not work as it should even as a a red meat speech, imo, because Palin is an unknown quantity. These types of attack speeches require a certain credibility that Palin has not yet earned. Instead of introducing her as a champion of the working folks, in terms of biography, issues and themes - which would have been the right play for Palin (and an important opportunity for the Republican Party), Plain competently delivered a typical, run of the mill VP attack dog speech.

Of course, the Media is now singing her praises - given the portrayal of Palin by the Left blogs and echoed by the Media as an incompetent - the expectations were below the basement. It seems clear today that the some of Left blogs and other Obama supporters have proven again to be Barack Obama's worst enemies. The Obama campaign spent the last week trying to drive the conversation back to McCain as Bush's Third Term. The Left blogs would have none of it, nor would the Media, especially the Obama News Network, NBC. Because of that, Palin strikes a tactical win last night. But the opportunity was bigger, and it was completely missed by the Republicans.

By Big Tent Democrat, speaking for me only

< Biden on Palin | Thursday Open Thread >
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    I write this post (5.00 / 4) (#1)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 09:21:59 AM EST
    because I think it is a fairly original thought that I have not read elsewhere.

    I do not expect to write any more posts this week.

    I agree completely (5.00 / 1) (#9)
    by dws3665 on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 09:27:55 AM EST
    I made a similar, though less complete and less articulate, comment on corrente and was pretty much ignored (though I was late to the thread).

    My mom (an HRC supporter like me) watched the speech with me, and her reaction was that it was "frightening" - did not make her like Palin one bit, though she thought some of the laugh lines were good.


    My Mom turned off the TV (5.00 / 1) (#12)
    by andgarden on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 09:29:47 AM EST
    after what was apparently an insane display by Rudy.

    lol (5.00 / 1) (#55)
    by dws3665 on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 09:44:01 AM EST
    he was ... energetic.

    I wish you would continue to post (5.00 / 3) (#22)
    by steviez314 on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 09:31:45 AM EST
    because this is exactly the right kind of analysis.

    They are playing to their base, which is already in their corner 90%+.  I heard nothing about any issues that should affect the undecided.  Now, maybe I'm wrong and somehow the culture wars will again overcome the economy, but that's just not my sense.

    As D identification has increased substantionally over R, the R ticket has moved FURTHER right.

    It's the job of the Obama/Biden ticket to "make the Republicans own their failure."  Nothing else really matters.


    I don't post about National Enquirier stories (5.00 / 22) (#42)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 09:40:02 AM EST
    silly blown up stories - like Palin's troopergate and other such things. I do not pretend that Sarah Palin's experience is comparably different than Barack Obama's in governance and that campaigning equals experience.

    I will not pretend Sarah Palin is Dan Quayle nor will I countenance sexist attacks.

    What I have to offer is posts like these. The market right now for this type of stuff is slim.

    Sensationalistic and wrongheaded nonsense is still winning the day. I think maybe next week normalcy might return.

    I only posted this because I thought it was something different.


    All the more reason ... (5.00 / 2) (#91)
    by robrecht on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 09:54:44 AM EST
    why you should be posting more, not less!!!  Since when have you felt constrained by the opinions of others?

    perhaps he has not felt constrained (5.00 / 5) (#100)
    by Capt Howdy on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 09:58:09 AM EST
    but repelled

    That captures my feeling (5.00 / 4) (#136)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 10:12:48 AM EST
    I was repelled by the political stupidity, hypocrisy and lack of scruples.

    that Republicans would do it and worse is not a North Star for my own behavior.


    I totally share your (5.00 / 5) (#142)
    by Capt Howdy on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 10:15:12 AM EST
    revulsion.  but I will not give up or shut up.
    someone has to call people out on this $hit.
    I dont care how right wing she is.

    Help Wanted (none / 0) (#182)
    by robrecht on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 10:29:49 AM EST
    I think you just need an admin to delete some of the nonsense before you see it.

    Not volunteering!


    i do think you've added something (5.00 / 6) (#107)
    by sancho on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 10:01:20 AM EST
    btd. thanks you. you're very missed around here. my sense was that she did what she was supposed to do. some of the women in the media said she connected with other women w/o speaking a word. and off and on she did try to imply that she was with working moms. but she cant directly reach out to hillary supporters on the issues b/c she cant actually offer to improve working class lives (beyond threatening them with tax bogey-man) w/o violating the platform.

    they seemed to like her at riverdaughter, though.

    for those of you who find her voice grating, i think that may be your own regional bias. not everyone will be bothered by her voice.



    if i may paraphrase BTD himself (5.00 / 1) (#162)
    by dws3665 on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 10:24:12 AM EST
    issues, not people, are the reason to be involved in politics. the hero worship is misplaced.

    respect is never misplaced (5.00 / 2) (#188)
    by Capt Howdy on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 10:32:13 AM EST
    you might want to write that down

    Bravo! (5.00 / 2) (#198)
    by GeekLove08 on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 10:35:27 AM EST
    I've disagreed with you plenty in the past, but I commend you taking the high road and focusing on the issues.  If more on the left took your reasoned approach, I may reconsider my decision to leave the Democratic fold.  For now, I'm sitting on the fence and exploring my options.  I do look forward to reading your comments and your opinions.  Please continue.  

    funny (2.77 / 9) (#59)
    by connecticut yankee on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 09:45:33 AM EST
    Seems like you can't pass up an opportunity to suggest you are better than the rest of us.   It also seems like you think her entire record is tabloid fodder.  I won't pretend to understand that. In fact, I won't "countenence" the implication.

    Heading for BTD's high ground (5.00 / 2) (#167)
    by marian evans on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 10:25:51 AM EST
    Well, if BTD's preferring genuine political discussion is seeming "...to suggest you are better than the rest of us", then quite frankly BTD's 'elitism" is of the most democratic kind - because I think it is going to get pretty crowded up there on BTD's high ground.  He's got plenty of company from down here amongst us mere mortals.

    Yep...sticking to your ideals is clearly showing elitist tendencies, BTD - who would have thunk it!


    I don't know if BTD is better than (5.00 / 6) (#174)
    by vml68 on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 10:27:35 AM EST
    "the rest of you"...but I commend him for taking the high road and keeping his eyes fixed on the prize. He wants Barack Obama to win.
    I am no fan of Obama,I wanted Hillary to win. But I still liked coming here to read the posts because BTD, Jeralyn and TChris kept things civil and fair. I don't know what has happened to Jeralyn since Palin was announced as VP. I do not know Jeralyn personally but used to respect her posts and comments. Yesterday she made a comment that they must have sedated baby Trig because he did not cry all day. I find that absolutely sickening.
    If your cause is to see Obama in the White house then I assure you Following BTD's example is the way to go.

    BTD knows how to win (4.66 / 6) (#111)
    by Capt Howdy on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 10:02:00 AM EST
    thats what he is trying to tell you.
    but I think its to late.

    Well (3.66 / 3) (#137)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 10:13:29 AM EST
    If the shoe fits  . . .

    Call me elitist if you like.


    Exactly. What's original.... (2.00 / 2) (#133)
    by NealB on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 10:11:00 AM EST
    ...about getting in a another gratuitous dig against "some of Left blogs and other Obama supporters?" And lots of others, Obama supporters and Lefty Blogs, have been making the same point BTD thinks is original here, that the speech by Palin was a strategic blunder.

    Oh really? (5.00 / 1) (#140)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 10:14:31 AM EST
    Show me the best example of Left blogs making the points I make here, specifically about the Hillary Clinton political space.

    No (none / 0) (#202)
    by NealB on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 10:36:34 AM EST
    The way you work, BTD, is whatever evidence I present will not be precisely what you want. Next you insult the rebuttal as being unserious and the poster as being unworthy of further consideration.

    Do you want to include Obama supporters in your big tent, Big Tent Democrat, or not? Because to me, it seems, if we're not Hillary supporters, we don't belong in your "big tent."


    No, he's against the tabloid 'talk' (none / 0) (#181)
    by andrys on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 10:29:18 AM EST
    heh (5.00 / 2) (#45)
    by connecticut yankee on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 09:40:44 AM EST
    I think its funny that Obama called it.  They found the most bitter guns and god spokesman they could find and ran with it.

    I really, really liked the way she snapped at her words and snarled from time to time.  It was a nice touch to scare off moderates.  I'm hoping they don't ask her to tone it down.


    Before this thread closes (5.00 / 1) (#211)
    by Marvin42 on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 10:42:37 AM EST

    you make a good point (5.00 / 0) (#215)
    by indy woman on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 10:46:24 AM EST
    but as an independent woman, I thought the main point that she was  making was that Senator MaCain is the CiC we need compared in these difficult times and she laid out all the reasons why.  I believe that was her primary job, and she came across well on that.  I think it will be Senator McCain's job  tonight to clinch that idea and talk about his economic plan.

    I believe his ability to appear as a leader who is steadfast should not be underestimated.


    Matthews was right on (none / 0) (#171)
    by andrys on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 10:27:10 AM EST
    Good to see you on some of these threads.

    McCain's biggest problem was that the conservative base was planning to stay home.  The woman thing meant that some Republican or conservative Democratic Hillary supporters still uncommitted might like her.

    I think her job (as was Biden's in the Dem convention) was to attack the presidential nominee of the opposing party.

    That she did pretty well, for those who want that.

    Maybe McCain can give us a more positive idea of what he'd be able to do that would help this world, though his focus as stated over the last few months doesn't indicate he will.  I think he's running for a job to run a war he knows how to win and that's about it. ("I know how to do that!")


    Moved missed thread (none / 0) (#208)
    by fctchecker on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 10:41:01 AM EST
    Hello Again this is (now) fctchecker who used to be fctchcker, but system wouldn't allow me in.
    But, it's  me. Why isn't BTD posting? What did I miss. Moved and have been out of it. Like many others I first was drawn to Talkleft because of BTD's sane and sage posts. Please fill me in.

    If that speech was any more effective (5.00 / 2) (#5)
    by myiq2xu on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 09:24:42 AM EST
    Even Obama would be voting for her.

    well (5.00 / 1) (#38)
    by connecticut yankee on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 09:37:48 AM EST
    Lying can be effective. But in this case I don't see how it helps her with moderates who are accustomed to the Bush administration's spin.

    Ann Richards speech is 88 (5.00 / 4) (#58)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 09:45:10 AM EST
    was the equivalent of Palin's speech.

    Your use of "goosesteeping" is ridiculous and offensive.

    It is symptomatic of why I took a break and expect to not post again on this election before Monday next at the earliest.


    its been pretty scary here (5.00 / 5) (#78)
    by Capt Howdy on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 09:51:57 AM EST
    many of the good ones have left.  it upsets me.

    They are only following Jeralyn's wishes (5.00 / 6) (#165)
    by PssttCmere08 on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 10:24:51 AM EST
    which are basically comply or get out...sad isn't it?

    As for Palin, she wasn't there to bring in the dems, she was there to energize the base.  As you can see, in that regard, she scored hugely.


    They haven't left (5.00 / 2) (#216)
    by BarnBabe on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 10:48:25 AM EST
    I am sure they are watching over your shoulder. They are just not as vocal and waiting to see where this turns out. Following the rules. Heh.

    While this IS like Ann Richards' speech (5.00 / 1) (#84)
    by steviez314 on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 09:52:55 AM EST
    there are a few differences:

    1.  Ann wasn't the VP pick saying these things

    2.  She knew the Bushes, so there was a sense she had the credibility to say them.

    3.  It didn't help anyway..

    Hopefully #3 won't be a difference. (none / 0) (#152)
    by Maria Garcia on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 10:19:07 AM EST
    I think it was effective (5.00 / 5) (#160)
    by Makarov on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 10:22:31 AM EST
    at one thing - framing the media narrative.

    My evidence? CNN was gushing their praise afterward. They didn't take notice of Palin's lies and distortions about her own record (the plane which didn't sell on Ebay, for example), or the same about Democrats.

    Sarah Palin is now "regular folk". Any attack on her or her experience (which I agree very much is stupid to begin with since Obama really doesn't have much more), will be an attack on "regular Americans". Obama-Biden is the elitist ticket now.

    Whether this lasts through November, whether she (and McCain) can win by ignoring issues Americans care about, that BTD rightly cites, remains to be seen. The media loves Obama, but they seem to be enjoying Palin quite a bit right now too.

    I still haven't wrapped my head around the decision that caused McCain to select Palin. It requires, perhaps, a lot of cognitive dissonance to fully comprehend. The only analysis I agree with is it wasn't done to attract to Clinton-Democrats to the ticket. At best, the inevitable misogyny will be a constant reminder of what happened to Hillary, and maybe encourage some to stay home in November.

    By the way, who the hell wrote Harry Reid's response to Palin, the one that referred to the attacks as "shrill"? Campbell Brown picked up on that right away. It's almost like he wants Obama to lose.


    And you hate Obama how much, lol? (3.40 / 5) (#20)
    by domerdem on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 09:31:36 AM EST
    I expect this from some folks (none / 0) (#18)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 09:31:16 AM EST
    Effective at what in your mind?

    I dont think you can believe (5.00 / 0) (#36)
    by Capt Howdy on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 09:36:50 AM EST
    that was not an effective political speech.
    can you?

    Depends on your terms (5.00 / 3) (#51)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 09:42:46 AM EST
    If you were someone who really thought she might be dropped from the ticket, then yes, she was an effective speaker.

    The SPEECH itself was not as effective as it could have been. It was a base speech and really did not do that much.

    To the degree that "Palin is unqualified" was hurting McCain, then yes it was effective. Personally, I expected at least this level of performance.

    Since I had already factored that in, I judge on whether a great political goal was served. In my opinion, it was not.  


    I dont know (5.00 / 2) (#71)
    by Capt Howdy on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 09:49:16 AM EST
    I think she was picked to solidify the base.  and I think she did that.  
    I was not surprised by the delivery either but I think many MANY were.  she has been so denigrated over the last few days I think there were people, people who get their news from librul blogs,  who did not expect her to make a complete sentence.
    I think in that respect also it was something of a home run.
    I think the most important thing to be made clear last night was the point in your post.
    this is not and have never been about Hillary.
    she made it clear why I wont be voting for her.  but I am not a majority.

    that is why (5.00 / 3) (#124)
    by TimNCGuy on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 10:07:13 AM EST
    just like Chris Matthews pointed out, all the people who thought she was put on the ticket to go after Hilary's voters were wrong.

    She may be able to go after some of Hillary's voters.  Like those conservative dems in small towns and rural areas in states like PA and OH.  Oh wait, those are important "swing" states aren't they?  And, outside the cities, those states are filled with socially conservative dems and indys for whom being pro-choice isn't the most important issue when they vote.

    She might even help in a western state like CO being a hunter and a snow "machine" rider and a 'frontier" woman.


    Nonsense... (5.00 / 0) (#156)
    by skuld1 on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 10:20:36 AM EST
    What, there were conservative dems that supported Hillary?

    That's ridiculous.  Why, we've been told/assured by several commenters here that every Hillary voter is a liberal Dem who's single voting issue is choice...   /snark


    the part that makes it brilliant is (5.00 / 1) (#157)
    by Capt Howdy on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 10:21:39 AM EST
    ion spite of her extreme right wing positions, she is going to get many people who would have voted for Hillary.
    like I said yesterday, Obama was going to win because of the opportunity to cast a historic vote.
    now there are two options for casting a historic vote.
    that is the Obama campaigns worst nightmare.

    Thank You (5.00 / 3) (#104)
    by daring grace on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 10:00:59 AM EST
    As I was watching the speech last night, I kept feeling something wasn't quite good enough.

    I was looking with an eye toward what she is trying to project and who she is trying to reach beyond the base, because I know I'm not part of her constituency and never will be.

    I got as far as the contrast with Senator Clinton but you filled in the blanks for me. Even as an Obama supporter I was (and remain) impressed with HRC's resounding resurrection of her campaign and her effective positioning of herself as the working class fighter.

    It puzzled me that Palin couldn't/didn't go there last night. But, of course, she's hamstrung by the fact that her party doesn't really offer the social/economic remedies the working class needs now in this stinky economy. And to paraphrase Lloyd Bentsen (ad nauseum): Palin is no Hillary Clinton.


    I don't think BTD is arguing that it wasn't (5.00 / 1) (#60)
    by JoeA on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 09:46:28 AM EST
    effective as a "red meat, energise the base, attack dog" speech.  The issue is whether that was the type of speech the McCain campaign should have had her delivering.  I don't think that the speech she was given is one that will convince many independents or wavering undecideds.  Ok so she firms up the Republican base (already supporting McCain at 90% prior to the convention) and energises fundraising,  but is that what the McCain campaign needed?90%

    The speech (5.00 / 3) (#61)
    by befuddledvoter on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 09:46:28 AM EST
    was effective at energizing the convention audience.  It was embarassing how dull and listless they had been all week. Of course, Rudy Guiliani warmed them up for Palin.

    I thought her delivery was very good, despite her very grating voice (like nails on a blackboard to my ear).

    I would not say it was a lost opportunity so I disagree with BTD on this.  Palin's pitch was to small town/blue collar/union/gun totting people clinging to their guns and religion.  You know that is a big group of people and Palin directly addressed them, while absolutely crucifying Obama on this.  You recall, you don't say one thing to people in Scranton and another to people in San Fran when Scraton is not looking.  I thought that was potent.  

    While I agree she was too harsh in her criticims, given the dearth of her experience, I do think she played well to the group she was targeting.  I do not think her speaking about policy intricacies or war or economy would have addressed these people.  

    I have said from the moment McCain selected Palin that it was more than gender at play.  It was her lifelong NRA membership; her small town life; union membership; her unflinching pro-life creds.  She is one of the group targeted by McCain.  Ironically, she does not have a platform or belief system that will benefit them.  


    If that was the pitch, it was a failure. (2.00 / 0) (#106)
    by Pegasus on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 10:01:16 AM EST
    Palin's pitch was to small town/blue collar/union/gun totting people clinging to their guns and religion.

    A couple of zingers directed at Obama isn't going to convince those people that Palin (or McCain, which is more salient) gives a whit about their lives.  She said next to nothing about their day-to-day concerns -- nothing about rising food and gas prices, nothing about stagnant wages... as Biden pointed out, she didn't even use the phrase "middle class" in the speech.

    She proved to those swing voters that she can attack Obama, but she didn't prove that she cares about them.  She didn't even suggest it.


    I agree that it was (none / 0) (#70)
    by eric on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 09:49:04 AM EST
    effective, if you like the sort of speech that it was.  Lots and lots of blame, hate, lies, and plenty of cheap shots.  Classic Republican reactionary dogma.  I've heard it all before, but that was in a college republican dorm room.

    It made me sad.  Not necessarily because of what Palin was saying, but because the entire audience seemed electrified when she criticized the concept of someone being read their rights.  And on and on. Very sad.


    This is why (5.00 / 6) (#94)
    by Democratic Cat on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 09:55:23 AM EST
    I don't go for the kumbaya. We nominate moderates and they nominate wingers. And no matter who wins, I don't like where that ends up.

    I didn't actually find her overly nasty--it's a friggin' GOP convention, after all. But I agree she didn't have anything in that speech for the non-base to grab onto. I admire her for not being a quitter though. I think we'll see more of her in the future, but hopefully not in the White House.


    I think (hope, pray. . .) that Palin has (5.00 / 2) (#6)
    by andgarden on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 09:25:16 AM EST
    run her course as an "issue."

    The polling I've seen shows that she's not really changing anyone's mind about how to vote at the top of the ticket. The Obama campaign knew that would be true all along, but I wonder whether anyone else will figure it out.

    She really has (5.00 / 1) (#10)
    by bluegal on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 09:28:30 AM EST
    John McCain is still running for President and he still has an R next to his name and has voted 90% of the time with Bush.

    She should have made the case that this wouldn't be a third Bush term.  She didn't. She didn't even bother to tell us about herself but chose to bash Obama.

    Who the hell is she?


    I think the public perception of her (none / 0) (#14)
    by andgarden on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 09:30:38 AM EST
    will be not too good, but it doesn't matter.

    This election will be mostly about the top of the ticket, as always.


    The public seems to think the press is (5.00 / 1) (#150)
    by stefystef on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 10:18:27 AM EST
    beating up on Palin.  If the press doesn't stop, Palin because a "martyr" and that is a big problem for Obama/Biden.

    I think the Obama campaign (5.00 / 2) (#13)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 09:30:23 AM EST
    wanted her to be a blip. And in a way, McCain insured it last night by having her deliver that speech.

    On some level, they are relieved that she did not crash and burn (which was never going to happen, the silliness comparing Palin to Quayle or Eagleton was proven as such), but they misunderstood the opportunity presented to them - LOW expectations coupled with a compelling biography and an effective politician (no Dan Quayle she)- they missed and badly.


    The media (5.00 / 1) (#199)
    by Bob K on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 10:35:39 AM EST
     and many blogs thought Palin would act like a deer caught in the headlights and found out she is more like a polar bear protecting her cubs. She beat on Obama like he was a rented mule.

    Obama talks about having judgement, but he blew the only big political decision he ever had to make by taking Biden instead of Hillary as his VP. That would have locked it up. Anyone coming down with a case of buyers remorse?

    Here is a link to one of the 25 debates in 45 days in 2006 when she was running for governor. It is of course all about Alaska politics, but with all the gaffes Biden makes I doubt he is going to hand her her head.


    I agree that she had a shot that she (1.00 / 0) (#21)
    by andgarden on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 09:31:39 AM EST
    should never have been given. Reading the text, it seems clear that she didn't do what she needed to.

    Her delivery (5.00 / 2) (#35)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 09:36:20 AM EST
    of the speech was quite competent.

    The fault lies entirely with the McCain campaign.


    The speech was written by (5.00 / 1) (#88)
    by inclusiveheart on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 09:53:58 AM EST
    one of President Bush's former speech writers - Matthew Scully - and it sounded like GWB to me last night before I knew that detail.  I think that was a mistake.  

    She did not sound fresh and new - she sounded eerily familiar - which of course works with the people in the convention hall - but may be off putting for people who are no longer admiring of Bush's personal style of politicking.


    She sounded familiar because (5.00 / 1) (#144)
    by stefystef on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 10:16:35 AM EST
    it's the same audience that pushed Bush into the White House twice.  While people love to talk about "change", they are more comfortable with the familiar.

    Palin was hitting the points the RNC and the Republicans love to hear.  There's nothing new there, just re-hashed stuff.  And it's what they want.


    No to me she sounded eerily (5.00 / 1) (#212)
    by inclusiveheart on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 10:42:55 AM EST
    familiar because there was a mean-spirited quality to the speech - the "sarcasm" which was really to my ear more of George Bush's cynical and mocking style that we've heard for so many years from George Bush himself.  It reminded me of Bush looking for WMDs under the dias mocking us - of him mocking that woman on death row - of him mocking me and all of the other people who never believed Iraq was the kind of threat he claimed it was...  It reminded me of all of those things and it reminded me of how unfair these Republicans always are in a fight.  Most Americans don't care about fairness so that's not an issue for her or the ticket - but it bothered me.

    Something that hasn't been explored well (none / 0) (#43)
    by andgarden on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 09:40:07 AM EST
    is the degree to which the Palin choice has taken the McCain camp's otherwise competent messaging totally off course.

    "Ready to lead" just doesn't make much sense anymore.


    Obama supporters (5.00 / 5) (#62)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 09:46:36 AM EST
    have allowed them a new angle on it imo.

    I think in many ways they revived it by attacking in over the top terms Palin's experience.

    If you want to read a silly article about it, read Jon Alter's ridiculous column about it.


    Because Obama "supporters" took the bait (5.00 / 3) (#79)
    by andgarden on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 09:52:09 AM EST
    and actually decided to talk about experience again. That was so obviously stupid that I can't understand why anyone did it.

    I think you are missing the fact (5.00 / 4) (#168)
    by Marvin42 on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 10:25:55 AM EST
    That for the last few days the entire discussion has been about "who has more experience Obama or Palin." The fact that this is EVEN a discussion is bad enough, but wait until it is underscored that its the top of the dem ticket vs the bottom of the repub ticket.

    It actually make "Ready to Lead" a very strong theme imho.


    All she needed to do (none / 0) (#82)
    by Sincerely on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 09:52:37 AM EST
    Was give the tv viewing audience a reason, ANY reason to tune into the RNC.  I think without Palin speaking, McCain would have suffered another, "only one press rep at the airport" embarrassment.  The extremely low viewership is probably one reason Bush and Cheney were pulled from the line-up... so the media could not quantify just how disinterested in and repelled by them the TV viewing citizens are. So, regardless of the fact that Palin was incredibly mediocre in both demostrated oratory and inspired leadership, she fulfilled the GOP goal of getting both republicans and democrats to watch... like its a real race. Like Bush, she is benefitting from exceeding low expectations.

    Good analysis (5.00 / 2) (#8)
    by Coral on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 09:26:47 AM EST
    Glad you stopped in to offer this. I see your point and agree.

    Good to have you back. (5.00 / 2) (#23)
    by Faust on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 09:33:06 AM EST

    Palin isn't running against Hillary (5.00 / 5) (#24)
    by stefystef on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 09:33:13 AM EST
    Only Chris Matthews, with his Clinton-obession, would try to compare Hillary to Palin.  As always, bringing the Clintons into the picture again.  

    Palin can't touch Hillary with a ten-foot pole, but honestly, I didn't feel Obama could either.  I do not take anything that Chris Matthews says seriously because I don't know if his leg is tingling or not.

    It was attack night.  Tonight, McCain will be taking the high ground.  He won't attack Obama/Biden, instead expanding on his so-called "reform plan".  It's the mirror of the Obama campaign.  Biden was chosen for this "pitbull" technique and this allows Obama to take the high ground while the surrogates go on attack.  McCain is doing the same thing with Palin, Guliani, Thompson and crew.

    Of course she is not (5.00 / 4) (#31)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 09:35:24 AM EST
    which is precisely the point - the political space Hillary occupied was very much available. That is why I call it a missed opportunity.

    I dont think thats what he meant (5.00 / 3) (#33)
    by Capt Howdy on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 09:35:45 AM EST
    ever since the announcement we have been hearing how this is all about Hillary supporters.
    it never was.  last night that became obvious.

    It's clear to me that: (5.00 / 1) (#29)
    by Don in Seattle on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 09:34:14 AM EST
    A. Palin can competently deliver an attack speech before a friendly audience.

    B. McCain chose Palin in part to try to appeal to disaffected Hillary voters.

    Whether many Hillary voters will respond to this appeal (despite Palin's diametrically opposite stance on most issues) is, to me, an interesting, important and open question.

    Why would Palin appeal to (5.00 / 1) (#123)
    by santarita on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 10:06:55 AM EST
    people who voted for Hillary?

    What is there about Palin that would persuade them?  I'm curious.


    That XX chromosome? (1.66 / 3) (#154)
    by Don in Seattle on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 10:20:20 AM EST
    Don't mistake me -- I'm not saying all women think alike, or vote alike. Just that McCain's selection of a woman is in part a cynical appeal to female "identity" voters.

    Just like selecting a male candidate is ... (5.00 / 4) (#219)
    by santarita on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 11:00:11 AM EST
    a cynical appeal to male "identity" voters?  Just how many in each category do you think there are?  

    People who supported Hillary were from both genders.  People who supported Hillary and/or other candidates and are not now supporters of the Dem ticket are from both genders.  


    BTD, (5.00 / 1) (#39)
    by frankly0 on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 09:38:08 AM EST
    while I agree with you that Palin didn't address those middle class issues with the intensity that would be desirable, I think you miss the overall point that there really is a reason for that: Republicans really don't have an answer to those issues. They can, at best, come at them only very indirectly, talking about removing tax burdens, etc.

    There's a reason Rove et. al. always refocus the attention on other kinds of issues: because they lose when the focus is on kitchen table issues (except, again, for lowering taxes).

    So I don't see her speech as a "missed opportunity". Really, on this score, she and the Republicans have nothing to say. It's constituitive of being Republican.

    Not haiving an answer (5.00 / 2) (#67)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 09:48:53 AM EST
    has never stopped a politician from pretending to care about an issue.

    Ronald Reagan in MaComb County is the archtypical model.


    Well, I don't recollect how (none / 0) (#95)
    by frankly0 on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 09:57:09 AM EST
    Reagan might have pulled off that feat, but I do think that at least in part Palin did make a very effective emotional appeal to many of the people who constitute the working class voter: by playing up her small town roots and connections. In many ways, I think that that was a very large part of Reagan's own appeal to voters. I'd be curious to know how Reagan might have appealed to the voters of Macomb county on economic issues, other than talking about lowering taxes.

    As a life long Macomb County resident (none / 0) (#158)
    by JAB on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 10:21:49 AM EST
    (although I was way too young to vote back then), part of his appeal on economic issues was that, if you can remember, inflation was running rampant, the auto companies were in bad shape and had been hit by the gas crunch of the 1970's, and unemployment was high.  Macomb County then was mostly blue collar workers (although a high ethnic {Polish, Italian, etc) Catholic population, of which, many, if not most were socially liberal). But people were hurting, and Carter didn't speak to them.

    Now Macomb County, still has many blue collar workers, but as one of the fastest growing counties in Michigan, there has been some "money" moved in, and more Republican influence, although, oddly, all the big political offices are held by Democrats.  The economy once again sucks, so it should be a bellwether to watch once again.


    I guess I can see (5.00 / 2) (#203)
    by frankly0 on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 10:36:44 AM EST
    how he might have appealed to Macomb county voters on the issues of inflation, etc., simply because he wasn't Jimmy Carter (who was being held accountable for all those things). Yet, apart from lowering taxes, and "getting big government off their backs", what could he possibly offer to deal with any of these problems? My guess is that all he really offered was sympathy.

    But I think that mostly Palin covered the sympathy angle pretty well. She conveyed sympathy with small town voters in the best way possible: by making it clear that she and her family are among them. Her husband runs a small commercial fishing company; she has a like economic background; she was a mayor of a small town, etc., etc.

    In short, she cares about them because she is them.

    Perhaps she could have said more on this score, but what she did communicate strikes me as pretty effective.


    but (none / 0) (#218)
    by call me Ishmael on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 10:57:40 AM EST
    one thing that Reagan had in 1980 was that he was running against an incumbent in a situation where the economy looked so bad.  I think that one of the reasons Palin did so little on the economic issues that might appeal to the working-class is that they don't have anything but platitudes.  And the republicans are stuck with Bush.
    On the other hand running against the MSM will allow them to develop a cultural populism that is always very popular.
    It will be interesting to see how the MSM responds over the next couple of days because--despite some of the comments here--Obama has helped produce some significant legislation in the Senate on things like nuclear proliferation (with Lugar), ethics, and obligations to vets, etc.  Will they actually show the dishonesty of the speech or simply comment on the affect?  I am not willing to bet on the former and the McCainites are betting on the latter.

    No New Ground Was ... (none / 0) (#146)
    by santarita on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 10:17:08 AM EST
    ploughed last night.  Of course, her task wasn't to upstage McCain in terms of introducing new initiatives.  Her job was to roll-out the negative aspects of the marketing effort.  McCain will deliver the presidential speech tonight.

    Her speech was pretty standard fare for a convention.  And pretty standard fare for the Republican Party.  They are against taxes, against big government interfering in their quest for profits, against against human rights for suspects, etc.  No surprises there.

    The only surprise in the speech was when she mentioned that she had gone after the powerful Republicans in her state - that didn't get such a hearty round of applause.


    Mentioning Hillary would have been a risk (5.00 / 3) (#47)
    by Exeter on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 09:41:15 AM EST
    The left blogs and the media would have accused McCain of ham-handed pandering to Clinton voters.

    Bottomline?  She was awesome.  Absolutely poised and charming. Absolutely awesome. She fired up the blue collar Clinton voters without mentioning Clinton's name. It was perfect, imo.  (unfortunate, but true)

    She need never have mentioned Hillary (5.00 / 1) (#77)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 09:51:49 AM EST
    You utterly misunderstand my point.

    Please reread my post.


    I see what you are saying, but... (5.00 / 3) (#121)
    by Exeter on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 10:06:39 AM EST
    she doesn't need to establish anymore street cred with blue collar Hillary voters -- they already know she is one of them:  Thanks in large part to all media and left wing attacks that she is small town, white trash hick.

    My point is that if she telegraphed "I'm going after Hillary voters" in anyway-- including mentioning Hillary by name-- the media would have accused her of pandering.

    There were alot of dog whistle blowing last night that the Clinton voters heard and accomplished the end-goal of attracting Clintonites.


    How exactly (5.00 / 1) (#131)
    by dws3665 on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 10:10:19 AM EST
    did she fire up middle class/Hillary voters? By failing to mention single issue that might affect their lives? By not offering a single solution to the economic struggles they face?

    Your opinion of blue collar Clinton voters must be very low if you think they will open their arms wide to embrace the person who gave that speech.


    Heh -- if there is one thing I know (4.00 / 3) (#159)
    by Exeter on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 10:21:58 AM EST
    it is blue collar, lower to middle class, uneducated whites.  

    oh (none / 0) (#176)
    by dws3665 on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 10:27:58 AM EST
    then excuse me for questioning you.

    Dems do need to get Clinton out there, tho (none / 0) (#187)
    by sallywally on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 10:31:30 AM EST
    Hillary would make Palin look like an oppositional-defiant adolescent - and make sure everyone could see the differences between them, just in case any Clinton supporters - or working folks - were thinking of going to the Repub ticket.

    Clinton's commitment, personal strength and elegance, grasp of the issues and ability to reach her audience are even more important now.

    She can clearly show the lack of support the Repub ticket would give the working and middle classes - and so so important since both McCain and Palin are reaching for them.


    Good to see you. (5.00 / 2) (#57)
    by tootired on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 09:44:55 AM EST
    I think that if the media and Obama's supporters hadn't been busy throwing sh!t at the proverbial fan, we may have seen a different speech from Palin. I think we will hear that kind of speech on the stump. Unfortunately, or fortunately depending on one's viewpoint, it won't have the national audience that she had last night. Sarah Palin has energized the Republican base. They won't be staying home now. The Alaska delegation's choice of orange (and John McCain's orange tie) was a callout to the PUMAs. They'll be watching for more signs that McCain and Palin want their votes and are willing to work to get them. The "media sexism watch" is already filling up. Women have corralled the story at least for this media cycle. I know that Jeralyn has stated that sexism isn't her issue, but I think it's going to be one of the major issues in this campaign from now on, or at least until an issue becomes a media sh!tstorm.

    Sexism will not be the issue. (5.00 / 0) (#99)
    by Fabian on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 09:58:06 AM EST
    Palin would have to be the Immaculate Virgin Mary for sexism to rule as a dominant media narrative.  Palin isn't.  She's not shiny and spotless.  So sexism will hang out for a few days and then stories about Palin's professional shortcomings will come out.  When that happens, the media will say "Look, THIS isn't sexism!" and the media will pretend that what went before didn't happen or wasn't significant.

    Why? (none / 0) (#81)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 09:52:32 AM EST
    Why would the sh*t have stopped them from giving that speech?

    I do not follow your logic.


    The traditional role of the VP (5.00 / 4) (#153)
    by tootired on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 10:20:12 AM EST
    nominee is to be the attack dog. If Palin had given the speech about the issues that you suggest, the instant replays this morning would have been about how a woman, and especially this one from I believe Jeralyn called it "Tinytown", is not up to taking on Joe Biden. She's just a mom with five kids, and did you know that one of them is disabled? And her teenage daughter is pregnant? She tried to give a "Hillary speech", but the poor dear, bless her heart, just isn't Hillary. She needed to show that she is a real politician and can deliver the pitbull performance expected from a male VP nominee or be subjected to more ridicule and condescension. I watched this speech in a room full of women from all political persuasions. It was a home run. The hostess's husband is a staunch Republican, and he was totally delighted that we approved of "McCain's Lady". Everyone in the room wanted moose hats with "I heart Sarah" on them. And this is in a bluer than blue state. I'm eagerly waiting for the new polls. And now, goodby for the day since I have used up my four posts for the day flirting with Captain Howdy on another post.

    Palin as traditional VP (5.00 / 1) (#185)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 10:31:10 AM EST
    sort of defeats the purpose of picking her.

    I'm breaking the rules by posting (5.00 / 2) (#220)
    by tootired on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 11:07:06 AM EST
    again. However, Palin's gender is what makes her not traditional. I have some experience with being "the first woman to. ." When you're breaking a major glass ceiling, being too different from the people on the other side is a barrier. Palin needs to be a traditional VP. The next female VP can be different in other ways. Part of the problem with Hillary's being chosen as VP is that many of her supporters would have balked at her being a traditional VP, and yet we knew that was what she would have had to be. Change happens incrementally more often than catastrophically.

    Missed opportunity to grow base (5.00 / 4) (#63)
    by davnee on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 09:46:57 AM EST
    Bulls eye to fire up base.  I thought her speech was a mixed bag.  She proved herself a talented attack dog.  So if that is the proper role of a VP candidate, then I think she did her job.  Particularly in light of the low expectations that BTD points out.  She came off as confidant and aggressive.  Was she too mean?  We'll see how that shakes out. She certainly was no deer caught in the headlights, which is about all she had to avoid to jump over the low bar set for her.

    I'm curious to see what she does on the campaign trail.  Do they pivot her to a more positive outreach?  I totally agree with BTD that that was missing.  But maybe the McCain camp thinks base maintenance is his most important need.  We'll see if that works for him.  I suspect he needs more.

    What fascinates me about Palin is the way that she completely confounds the media, punditry, the left and frankly the right too.  She's a conservative culture warrior that wears pumps, carries a diaper bag, and heads to work, leaving her husband home to raise the kids.  That's new and unpredictable.  She scares me exactly because she just might win the culture war.  She's also a heat-seeking missile with lipstick, which is equally confounding to the old guard.  How do you fight that?  What are the rules for female attack dogs?  I don't want her to be elected, because I disagree with her views, but I sure am intrigued by her and think it is about darn time we be faced with these questions.

    Apropos of the issue (5.00 / 5) (#64)
    by frankly0 on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 09:47:13 AM EST
    of the backfiring of all the over-the-top criticism Palin has received, there's this nugget from the latest Ras. tracking poll commentary:

    Last night's polling shows that, by a ten-to-one margin, voters believe reporters are trying to hurt Palin's campaign rather than help. Republicans and unaffiliated voters strongly believe that a double standard is being applied to Palin because she is a woman. Democrats disagree. Perhaps most stunning is that, among unaffiliated voters, just 42% believe Obama has better experience than Palin to be President. Thirty-seven percent (37%) say Palin has the edge on experience. Again, most of the interviews for this survey were completed before Palin's well-received speech last night.

    Given these numbers, imagine how much sympathy must have been going Palin's way over unfair attacks before she made her speech. Imagine how much all those attacks on her must have backfired when she so successfully projected confidence and competence.

    That was the opening (5.00 / 3) (#86)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 09:53:34 AM EST
    The MCCain campaign failed to exploit it.

    I think she spoke to small town women (5.00 / 3) (#178)
    by Marvin42 on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 10:28:42 AM EST
    More than you may be emphasizing here. Not taking anything away from your main point, but I saw more of a subtle wink-wink version of "I am fighting for you against the big city liberal elites" than your post implies.

    And having the whole family, teenage daughter and all also works to that theme.


    I think it was exploited (5.00 / 0) (#195)
    by Capt Howdy on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 10:34:48 AM EST
    in a very subversive way.  I can tell you that email I am getting today says she reached many democrats.
    and I think it smart to make it NOT overt.

    heh (none / 0) (#170)
    by connecticut yankee on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 10:26:58 AM EST
    Confidence and competence have no correlation.  See GWB.  

    She told a few absolute whoppers with total confidence, that doesnt make them true.


    I didn't listen (5.00 / 7) (#92)
    by Bluesage on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 09:54:54 AM EST
    To any of the pundits last night after her speech and decided to just think what I think without muddling it up with a bunch of moron speak.  I thought she did well.  She spoke about her life and how she got where she is and she dispelled the O-hatefest rhetoric that she's never been much more than a PTA member and a small-town mayor.  When will the Obama camp understand that most voters live in small towns, go to church and own guns?  I think her point that "some use change to advance their careers and others use their careers to advance change" was a very good and very clever point to make and will resonate with people who are uncomfortable with Obama.

    I am uncomfortable with all of them and for the first time in 40 years feel I have no one to vote for.  IMO, the Democrats really stepped in it this year trying to promote "change we can believe in" - I still don't know what that change is going to consist of, do you?  Some of Obama's recent decisions are troubling to me, there seems to be no position that is he is fully committed to.  

    WNYC caller reactions this morning interesting: (5.00 / 3) (#105)
    by jawbone on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 10:01:04 AM EST
    Ranged from great attack speech, great speech to what you noted: zingers, into of Palin, but almost no substance. It was a traditional VP attack dog speech. She did mention McCain in vague terms as being against increasing taxes, for new drilling and other energy measures. But those were not the memorable lines to me.

    One guy called in to say, sounding as if he were speaking with a straight face, that he talking about Obama as a "community organizer" was a dog whistle to the Repub base to make clear he was 1) black (bcz only minority communities need organizers), 2) a Communist (bcz communists plan communities..huh?), plus, 3) communities are only in big cities and we all know that big cities are where minorities and communists are (!!!!!).

    So, all along, per this caller, Obama has been telling us that he was both a black and a communist when he mentioned his role as community organizer. I did not know that.

    Now, this caller was not a McCain or Palin supporter; he seemed to be speaking as an Obama supporter. But, my oh my, people do come up with some pretty stretched takes on other people's words!

    A woman guest, btw, never saw any sexism in anything the media said about Hillary and the only sexism shown toward Palin was questioning whether she could be a mother of five and VP. The media people just cannot figure out why there's any thinking there's sexism.

    A woman caller said at least on the Repub ticket the lesser experienced person was the VP, not the presidential candidate.

    I felt while watching and listening that Palin did not hurt herself in any way, but I wondered if there would be a reaction to so little content. But, really, if her assignment was to intro herself to the base and the country and launch zingers with zest and class, she met those objectives.

    Reading transcript, I see economics pertaining to (5.00 / 1) (#193)
    by jawbone on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 10:34:28 AM EST
    working class worked into middle of her speech, starting on Pg 3 of this MSNBC transcript, where she talked about the expenses she cut from the budget directly affecting the governor's office (thejet sold on eBay, cutting the personal chef). She then went on to speak about a balanced budget in AK and giving oil royalties directly back to the citizens (which is not new, right?), then on Pg 4 goes into increasing cost of living problems and how, vaguely to me, McCain's tax and energy plans will help people. Standard Repub fare: cut waste, taxes, and increase jobs. Somehow.

    I hope you are right (5.00 / 1) (#109)
    by CST on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 10:01:57 AM EST
    I think the true effect of that speech won't be known until after McCain speaks.  I think the mere presence of Palin on the ticket has generated more interest in their campaing so people will be watching.  If McCain goes on a populist streak in his speech it could be a problem.  People expect the V.P. to be an attack dog.  I'm actually really nervous about what Palin does to this election, and more specifically, what the effects the response to her will have.
    I have disagreed with a lot of people on this blog but the fact that they're not here anymore means they're not listening anymore either and have possibly been pushed to a tipping point.  And it's not just here.
    I think McCain can either win those people over or he can sink his ship with his speech.  But they will be watching.  I kind of expect him to sink his ship, but he has had the ability to go populist in the past.

    Objectively (5.00 / 2) (#112)
    by Slado on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 10:02:01 AM EST
    she did a great job last night considering the media firestomer around her.

    To BTD's point her expactations where so rediculously low because the liberal blogoshpere and media assumed she must be a dummy but no objective person can say she didn't deliver her points very well.

    Jeralyn's point of a preprepared speech seems silly when all pols do that but I digress.

    She is a good politician.  In the coming days we will find out if she is good on the stump (I assume she is) and good with the press (I assume she is) and good in a debate ( I assume she is).  

    I hear you point BTD but I think ultimately she isn't going to convince you so who is she talking to?  Obviously the base which went great.  I also think she's talking to independents and in my view she laid out quite simply her agenda.

    More energy from all sources.
    Lower taxes
    Cutting goverment spending through negotiation or threat of veto.
    Strong defense

    To me and millions of conservatives that is exactly what I wanted to hear.  She has energized me in a way I used to be excited about Bill Clinton when I was a college freshman.   It can't be understated how great a pic this is to mobilize the republican base.

    The trick is can she and McCain get people to change their minds.

    You (5.00 / 1) (#117)
    by sas on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 10:04:17 AM EST
    can write what you want....but the Republican women looked so happy last night....

    and the Democratic women.....some are still so angry......

    Obama really screwed up by not picking Hillary,

    and the DNC said not a word in her defense.

    Republicans know how to treat their own.

    Republicans and Women Go Steady (5.00 / 2) (#143)
    by Roz on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 10:16:04 AM EST
    It was remarkable to see and hear the rousing, demonstrative, in-your-face Dems/media support for their woman VP candidate.

    I didn't catch it all, but I thought Linda Lingle was very effective in countering the inexperience charge against Palin, and to frame it as an affront to strong, capable women (like her and Palin). The delegates were eating this up. The message: It is the Republican Party who respects women, and is not afraid of strong female leaders.


    It's about working class whites, not Hillary (5.00 / 1) (#126)
    by fairleft on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 10:08:24 AM EST
    She and McCain are not focusing on the upper-middle-class female 'Hillary supporters'. She was selected in order to focus the McCain campaign on the much much larger "working class white (and Latino)" population that is uncomfortable with Obama.

    They go to Wisconsin today, a surprising battleground state that Obama has failed to nail down. I suppose the race will boil down to the Republicans' right wing populism versus Obama's mixed bag, left/right populism.

    Obama is too strong in the midwest (none / 0) (#135)
    by andgarden on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 10:12:41 AM EST
    for McCain to win Wisconsin.

    I Agree (5.00 / 4) (#130)
    by BDB on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 10:09:46 AM EST
    I'm not sure whether it matters because the Blogger Boyz had so focused attention on her family that I suspect that's what a lot of folks tuned into see.    And what I saw was a very compelling, likable family.  If this becomes a referendum on the Palin family or Sarah Palin as a mother, Dems will lose.  It's closer to being that thanks to the sexist campaign waged against her in the last week, including by Joe Biden "she's prettier than me" Biden.   And I believe if the Obama campaign had really wanted to stop it, they could've.  It seemed a classic Tier I/Tier II attack.

    It's just that last night made them realize their tactic to diminish her and her family is probably not going to work and may very well backfire in their faces.  So Biden is out talking about right-wing sexism this morning (why would the right-wing who loves Sarah Palin and wants her on the ticket attack her with sexism?).  

    But they lost an important week to talk about exactly how wrong about everything Sarah Palin is and to frame her speech last night in those terms.  

    What I fear is that a lot of Americans saw themselves in the Palin family last night and will simply assume she'll do good for them because of it.  Just like all those Blogger Boyz who saw themselves in Obama and assumed he was incredibly progressive even though he isn't.  Cultural touchstones can be powerful and she's got a lot of them, including the very working class names of her children.  Rich people do not name kids Bristol.  

    quite funny (none / 0) (#196)
    by connecticut yankee on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 10:34:59 AM EST
    The charges of sexism are sexist themselves.  There wasnt a tenth as much outrage over the bashing Hillary took for 20 years.  The right called her a Lesbian, bi-sexual, ugly, ugly daughter, theif, murderer, serial adulteress, betrayed us to the chinese, etc.

    Is it because Palin is younger and prettier that the charges go further or just that they are cyncially crying sexism for political points?  Hillary took much worse from the low brow wing of the GOP.


    Bridge to Nowhere (5.00 / 1) (#138)
    by fuzzyone on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 10:13:39 AM EST
    One thing that surprised me, and Mark Shields on PBS, is that she repeated her lie about opposing the bridge to nowhere.  I suppose that is part of why she has done no interviews.  How will she answer that when confronted with the video of her past support.  I really don't get it.

    thats easy (2.66 / 3) (#205)
    by connecticut yankee on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 10:39:04 AM EST
    Dont ask her sexist questions about bridges to non-existant places. Would you ask a man about imaginary bridges to imaginary places?  What is she? Queen of the Leprechans!?!?

    Good to see you back if only briefly (5.00 / 4) (#145)
    by lambert on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 10:17:06 AM EST
    It's the "direction of the country" idea. The "progressive" blogs didn't do that all last week because they were too busy panty sniffing a 17-year-old (functioning, no doubt, as Tier Two of the Obama campaign).

    And then Sarah Palin misses the "direction of the country" opportunity as well*.

    She really is a barracuda (those 80% approval ratings don't come from nowhere) and the Ds need to get a sense of reality about her rapidly:

    1. Great life story as a hockey Mom to put beside Obama's life story.

    2. Undercuts the experience argument totally. "Being mayor is like being a community organizer [deadly pause] except with actual responsibilities." True or not, lots of people will believe this.

    3. If she's quick on her feet in debate, she could take Biden out. The press would love that story.

    That said, I thought the speech, as a speech, was terrific.  I disagree that she didn't have the credibility to throw the red meat. FIrst, Obama's best friends lowered the bar so much that if she was sentient, she had credibility. Second, her credibility comes -- in good right wing fashion -- from the family that surrounded her at the convention. What's more credible than a hockey mom? ("What's the difference between a hockey mom and a pit bull?" "Lipstick.") And third, her delivery is just fine. I think the "grating" people may be trying to plant the perception, rather than experiencing it (like Hillary's laugh). Credibility comes from ethos, not credentials or resume.

    In a lot of ways, this all seems familiar to me from the primaries. Same style of attack ("missed opportunities") by the Obama forces, but without control of party machinery -- a national election is not like Chicago -- the attacks seem to flail.

    Honestly, we've been talking about nothing but Palin for what? Five days? That can't be counted as anything other than a win for McCain.

    NOTE * I did note in the snark about "styrofoam columns" there is a subliminal appeal to working class votes, in that the pediments on McMansions were often made out of styrofoam covered with vinyl. The whole thing was fake from the beginning, and to anyone who worked construction and handled the materials, that had to have been obvious. Subtly connecting Obama to the people who brought about the collapse is clever. If I'm not reading too much into that!

    Styrofoam column (3.00 / 0) (#172)
    by eric on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 10:27:19 AM EST
    That comment was just a cheap shot aimed at the backdrop of Obama's speech.  I do think you are reading too much into the Mcmansion thing.

    FWIW, I do know about the Styrofoam crap they put on new houses, and for some reason, most people don't even seem to understand how wrong it is.


    agreed (none / 0) (#184)
    by dws3665 on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 10:31:03 AM EST
    Whereas I'm sure the RNC set will last for generations as a monument to political architecture.



    At least it was (none / 0) (#214)
    by eric on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 10:44:01 AM EST
    union built, as St. Paul is a union town.

    Also keep in mind that (5.00 / 1) (#149)
    by Exeter on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 10:18:02 AM EST
    the Palin 10 minute bio-video was not shown b/c Guiliani ran past his time limit.  This would have stressed more of the "I'm one of you and feel your pain" Clinton message.  Also, the teleprompter reportedly stopped working during her speech and she had to ad-lib much of it, which shows alot of moxy, imo.

    Dear Big Tent Democrat (5.00 / 2) (#192)
    by gentlyweepingguitar on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 10:34:25 AM EST
    I am no great intellectual. I don't have the skills to write the kind of posts you write. I wish I could. I'm more of a feelings type person, and I'm not very good at expressing my feelings.

    But, I can't stand Republicans. I hate what they've done to my country and my children's future. I need you to continue fighting against the destruction of my country. Please, reconsider. Every voice is important. You may bring in more votes. We need you.

    seconded (none / 0) (#210)
    by Capt Howdy on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 10:42:10 AM EST
    I (5.00 / 2) (#200)
    by sas on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 10:36:07 AM EST
    thought her best line was when she said something like

     'being a small town mayor was sort of like being a community organizer, but with actual responsibilities'.  

    It really pointed out to me that the only concrete thing Obama actually has done is talk and write.

    It's embarrassing that the Dems have chosen such a weak candidate, and that statement highlighted that fact.

    Her politics and mine are very different on some issues, but she is a strong woman who is capable and articulate.

    I am totally undecided about who to support.

    Sorry, Rashomon... (5.00 / 1) (#224)
    by Mr Natural on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 12:43:54 PM EST
    Community organizing is an entry level job with no statutory responsibilities.  

    It may be touchy-feely but touchy-feely doesn't balance a budget.  

    From the beginning of this debacle I have been flabbergasted that anyone would have accepted this as a qualification.

    What's really amazed me is that so many people equate the way their candidate makes them feel about him with rational analysis of his strengths and limitations and background.

    We can disagree with Palin's opinions on choice and limits to choice, but we should not delude ourselves.  Her opinions are those of a huge slice of America.

    The alpha males who top our ticket mumble about supporting women's rights.  Supporting.  As in allowing, permitting.  

    I'm not an expert, but it seems to me, having taken a good look at some very angry feminist writing back when I was younger, that the foremost objective of feminism was achieving political and personal power.  

    Well folks, Sarah Palin has grabbed power, and she grabbed it away from the good old boys.

    It's time to quit beating up straw-women and understand the real Governor Palin.

    I Am The Type Of Voter (4.25 / 4) (#54)
    by limama1956 on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 09:43:23 AM EST
    That Palin should have targeted last night. I was never on the Obama train. In fact, I wasn't even on the Hillary train. I'm a woman, middle-aged, with kids.

    The only thing we apparently have in common is a uterus. Other than that, she gave me no reason to change my initial impression about her.

    You don't handle a pitbull with kid gloves. If Obama/Biden make that mistake, they will get bit.

    The ONLY reason I am voting in Nov is to show my outrage over the McCain-Palin ticket.

    I was at an early morning meeting this AM (5.00 / 2) (#89)
    by Exeter on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 09:54:16 AM EST
    with lots of chit chat about Palin going on around before the meeting started.  There were six former Clinton supporters in there (white, blue collar, four women and two men).  They all were totally geeked-out about Palin.  Reminded me of gushing hard-core Obamiacs.  I reminded them that she is just like Bush... but I would very suprised if they didn't vote for McCain-Palin in the fall.

    Anecdotal, I know, but an ominous sign.


    Why are you outraged? (none / 0) (#96)
    by Roz on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 09:57:15 AM EST
    You're not an Obama voter. You weren't a Hillary voter. Are you suggesting you wouldn't vote for the Dem ticket if the Republican ticket were different? Who wouldn't outrage you?

    Yes I Was Prepared (none / 0) (#213)
    by limama1956 on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 10:43:13 AM EST
    Not to vote come November, which infuriated my husband no end. I have always voted Democratic. I love Bill Clinton. The primary battle between Obama and Hillary just wore me out.

    However, McCain picking Palin last Friday re-energized me. It was like a kick in the gut. I don't know how else to explain it. I was personally offended.


    I agree with your post (4.00 / 3) (#46)
    by AF on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 09:40:49 AM EST
    until the last paragraph, which appears to be a gratuitous dig at bloggers like Jeralyn and Josh Marshall who have successfully exposed the hypocrisy of Palin's "reformer" image and the sloppiness of McCain's vetting process.

    To say that Palin's public vetting has hurt the Obama campaign barely passes the smile test.  

    A gratuiitous dig? (5.00 / 8) (#75)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 09:50:58 AM EST
    Sorry, you are wrong. It is an essential part of the story on how Palin is being perceived and how the expectations for her speech were created.

    Jeralyn and Marshall and the Left blogs did Obama a tremendous disservice in the past week.

    It does not surprise me that you do not understand it. I do not need to smile to know you do not get it. Very few on the Left seem to.


    I agree BTD (5.00 / 7) (#103)
    by Bluesage on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 10:00:38 AM EST
    Just as I watched Olberman turn into O'Reilly right before my eyes - lately I've seen Jeralyn turn into Arianna Huffington.  

    Everyone needs to be vetted but vetting and trashing are two seperate things.  


    I thought Jeralyn was being a bit defensive... (2.00 / 0) (#161)
    by Maria Garcia on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 10:23:13 AM EST
    ...but Arianna Huffington? Never.

    What a Banal Comment (2.00 / 1) (#166)
    by glanton on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 10:25:10 AM EST
    Did you see what were the last straw(s) for Jeralyn?  First, the perpetual use of the family as props to be ogled again and again robbed them of their "off limits" mandate--at least with reasonable people, it did. If her family life is that big a part of her Ethos.  

    And then more devatstatingly from Jeralyn's perspective, was Palin's nasty dig at Miranda Rights.  What did you, BTD, or anyone else expect from a blogger primarily invested in criminal justice issues.  The GOP ticket is out for bloof.  Understanding this, OF COURSE Jeralyn's not pulling punches against McCain AND for Palin.

    It was a terribly craven speech by Palin, even moreso than Rudy's, and that right there is saying something.  Simply in the act of selecting her, the McCain campaign proved once and for all, for anyone who wasn't sure, that McCain claims to any shred of personal or political honor at all, are groundless.


    I expect her (5.00 / 10) (#191)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 10:33:11 AM EST
    not to stoop to the GOP level. But this rather specious anyway, Jeralyn has been acting in a way I disagree with regarding Palin well before the mention of Miranda rights, oblique as it was.

    Well (2.00 / 1) (#209)
    by glanton on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 10:42:10 AM EST
    On the "experience" argument I actually agree with you, and have from the beginning.  It seems clear that judgemtn and vision are much easier to sell this time around, than experience.  And rightfully so.

    So, I don't care for the experience meme regarding Palin, either.

    But on the level of both judgment and vision, Palin was a horrible, horrible choice for Veep. And it reflected very, very poorly on McCai's claim to good judgment as well.  And so of course people were going to go after her.  She is horrible and she is poised to get the Vice Presidency, and may very well end up with the whole thing.

    Any credibility McCain had re judgment was tossed ou the window with that pick.  Your warnings to ignore Palin entirely, or at least not to attack her, fails to call McCain out for one of the most telling and dangerous judgment calls he has made during the campaign.

    I am glad Jeralyn is ignoring the call to not go after Palin.  I am glad that she is not afraid of being called out by people who look for sexism in everything.  This is a dangerous ticket up and down and it needs to be said.


    Nonsense (none / 0) (#125)
    by dws3665 on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 10:08:11 AM EST
    You need to get your eyes checked, if that's what they've been seeing.

    Your post is how Palin's speech erred (none / 0) (#97)
    by AF on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 09:57:44 AM EST
    Seems like you could have made that point without repeating your often-stated belief that Palin should be treated with kid gloves.

    Obviously there is a difference of opinion here. Time will tell who is right.  Perhaps we can agree on some criteria for deciding, after the election, whether the public vetting of Palin helped or hurt Obama?


    The epxectations for the speech (5.00 / 1) (#122)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 10:06:47 AM EST
    and how they were created and the openings that created for McCain/Palin are part of the reason I think the speech erred.

    Fair enough (none / 0) (#148)
    by AF on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 10:17:37 AM EST
    Gratuitous or not, I continue to disagree with the point for reasons that have already been discussed at length.  In particular, while I agree with you that the Obama campaign has been smart not to hit Palin too hard, I think it is good for the campaign that the media and bloggers have exposed the Palin pick for what it appears to be: a cynical, impulsive, and irresponsible choice that reflects badly on McCain.

    However, if future events prove me wrong -- ie, if Obama loses or barely squeaks by, underperforming among women, while Palin's approval ratings soar -- I will admit that I was wrong.  Are there any future events that will lead you believe you are wrong?


    Pedestrian Speaker (3.50 / 2) (#2)
    by bison on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 09:22:11 AM EST
    Palin  is a  pedestrian speaker at best. Her voice was grating and the speech offered not solutions to improve the quality of life for working people.  Once again, she used her children as props!

    Children as props (1.50 / 2) (#7)
    by stefystef on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 09:26:12 AM EST
    We aren't going to get on Palin about that when Obama has his little girls all over the place, even after he said no more coverage of his kids after that ET! interview.

    What made me laugh was who uncomfortable Bristol Palin's baby-daddy looked up there.  That boy looked like he wanted to run for the hills!!!  Poor thing.  He was just trying to get some nookie and he ended up with a VP campaign.  He should be the poster boy for shotgun weddings.  I hope young men in America are watching this young man and running out to purchase prophylactics.  

    That's right kids, just say no!!!!


    since the young couple (5.00 / 3) (#102)
    by TimNCGuy on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 09:58:48 AM EST
    are engaged to be married and the father plans to be a full and complete aprt of a family unit, I don't think the term baby-daddy applies does it?

    Not our call. (5.00 / 5) (#120)
    by Fabian on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 10:05:55 AM EST
    If you think the baby is being mistreated, you can always contact the authorities.

    I knew a couple who took their months old infant to a football game in an outdoor stadium packed with thousands and thousands of screaming fans.  That's one public venue no one would hear a wailing infant!  (He slept through most of it.)


    That I disagree with (5.00 / 6) (#151)
    by BarnBabe on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 10:19:04 AM EST
    Hiding the baby from the public says you are ashamed of your special needs child. This is her family. They all seem to adore the child and he is a part of the family. Most of us do not live in the 'perfect family' world and understand. So don't go there with the baby. She did mention she would be working very hard for special needs children. This was something overlooked by the media but might not be overlooked by many parents in a similar situation.  

    Just say ... (2.66 / 3) (#11)
    by dws3665 on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 09:28:38 AM EST

    Hahahahahahahha (2.00 / 1) (#34)
    by stefystef on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 09:35:46 AM EST
    Maybe a knocked-up daughter and a "deer-trapped-in-the-headlights" future son-in-law will sober Palin up to admit the importance of REAL sex education in schools.

    By the way, since Bush has been President, teen pregnancies has steadily gone up.


    nice (5.00 / 2) (#115)
    by Capt Howdy on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 10:03:10 AM EST
    the guy is 18 years old.  I wonder how you would have looked on that stage at 18.

    Not to my point (none / 0) (#4)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 09:24:21 AM EST
    But thank you for your comment.

    You can't be all things (5.00 / 3) (#127)
    by fercryinoutloud on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 10:08:54 AM EST
    to all people in one introductory night.

    Palin's main goal last night was to introduce herself to the nation. Obviously she is not in the position that Hillary was when she lashed out at the press. So what she did was establish who she was, where she came from, what her values are, and who she relates to - small town America. She accomplished those things. Beyond that her task was to talk up McCain. She did a good hob of that also. She did light and humorsly prod the press and the establishment and also set the bar for here and McCain stealing the 'Change' theme from Obama.

    As for talking about the issues the working class voters care about, what she did was establish a baseline of who she was in relation to working class voters and from there she has a launching pad to speak to those issues in the next two months. Whether she will or not or how good of a job she will do remains to be seen by she layed the groundwork for that last night which is all that could be expected given the circumstances and the time restraints of that speech.

    There are always things onlookers can see that one could have spoke about. But often, and I think this is the case last night, in order to talk about those other things in depth other things she did say would have been left out. I think she did a great job in what I see as the goals and tone she wanted to strike last night. The objective commentators I saw after the speech said she exceeded expectations. I agree.

    Her story is compelling - small town soccer mom successfully raises to the top of her state. Today small town America sees her as one of them. Whether they agree with her politics is another matter but she has established a relationship and with those people - people who Obama has not established a relationship to.

    I'd give her a B+ (maybe an A) for her effort last night.


    Agreed (none / 0) (#83)
    by eric on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 09:52:45 AM EST
    and that accent!  I'm a Minnesotan and found it pretty unbearable.

    McNasty and Ms. Nasty. (2.00 / 1) (#27)
    by LarryInNYC on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 09:33:50 AM EST
    McCain's high school nickname was McNasty and, although the media has heretofore done a good job of presenting his false, public, front there's plenty of evidence that at heart he's still a nasty, vindictive little man (anyone remember his Chelsea Clinton joke?).

    And it looks like he's gotten a running mate who can match him in the nastiness stakes.

    I'll bet you his speech is worse (none / 0) (#32)
    by andgarden on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 09:35:25 AM EST
    McCain has had terrible delivery in the past.

    Worse in terms of. . . (none / 0) (#50)
    by LarryInNYC on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 09:42:41 AM EST
    delivery?  Or in terms of nastiness?

    The McCain campaign is on record that this election is not about issues (of course, they sort of have to take that position) but about personalities.  I only heard excerpts of Palin's speech, but media coverage ("Palin Mocks Obama") is certainly suggesting the kind of personality that Americans generally don't like to vote for.

    Let's hope McCain is worse.


    In terms of delivery (none / 0) (#56)
    by andgarden on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 09:44:18 AM EST
    Who knows what the content will be. I'll guess that it will be pretty nasty, though.

    I expect not (5.00 / 2) (#65)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 09:47:47 AM EST
    I can't imagine it can be any worse (none / 0) (#69)
    by JoeA on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 09:48:57 AM EST
    than his Green Screen disaster  . . . "and thats not change we can believe in"

    so (5.00 / 3) (#118)
    by Capt Howdy on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 10:05:39 AM EST
    if the election is decided on the ability to give a speech we are all good.
    what a relief!

    I don't see why. . . (none / 0) (#93)
    by LarryInNYC on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 09:55:13 AM EST
    necessarily.  He has a lot invested in his (false) nice guy, bipartisan image.  He's always played that role before.

    Lots of negative TV ads with BCRA disclaimers (none / 0) (#98)
    by andgarden on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 09:58:00 AM EST
    between then and now.

    Exactly (none / 0) (#128)
    by JoeA on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 10:09:02 AM EST
    McCain's base (i.e. the MSM) are disillusioned with the lack of access and very negative campaign he has been running.  I'm not sure he will be able to pivot to a positive campaign between now and November.

    Obama has been running negative ads,  but locally and without the fanfare.  Much more effective and he has avoided getting tagged as a negative campaigner by the public.


    talk about a sucker bet! (none / 0) (#68)
    by dws3665 on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 09:48:56 AM EST
    He is a horrible speaker.

    jonathan Martin at Politico begs to differ (5.00 / 2) (#73)
    by JoeA on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 09:50:37 AM EST
    He has an article up suggesting that McCain may well beat expectations on his speech,  and quotes some rave reviews of his previous convention speeches.  The danger again here is the low expectations.  

    McNasty and Sarah Barracuda (none / 0) (#49)
    by JoeA on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 09:42:12 AM EST
    Thats some ticket.

    Not bad at all (none / 0) (#113)
    by Roz on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 10:02:59 AM EST
    if you are positioned as the ticket that is going to "shake up Washington."

    That's a tough sale from the party that (none / 0) (#119)
    by JoeA on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 10:05:41 AM EST
    controlled the White House for the last 8 years Congress for the last 6.

    Meet the new boss,  same as the old boss.


    You are right BTD! (none / 0) (#3)
    by bluegal on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 09:23:56 AM EST
    Poblano at 538 said the EXACT same thing as you did and I agree with both of you.

    She doesn't have the credibility to be so nasty.  I read an article from the Detroit Free Press and all of the independents were not happy with her. The only folks that like her were Republicans.

    She blew it last night and since the media swooned they are going to expect her on her A game all of the time. She stumbles in the slightest, it's over.

    There is news that Palin's teleprompter (none / 0) (#15)
    by Buckeye on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 09:30:45 AM EST
    malfunctioned about 1/3 of the way into her speech (it would not stop scrolling during applause).  The final 2/3rds of her speech was from memory.

    I agree with BTD.  The diatribes against Palin fired up the conservative base and caused significant campaign contributions to flow into McCain's coffers.  All she had to do was not fall off the stage and she will probably give McCain a bounce from his convention.  Missed opportunity for both sides in my opinion.

    Not true (5.00 / 1) (#110)
    by Don in Seattle on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 10:01:59 AM EST
    You could see, at least on PBS, that the teleprompter was working just fine, both midway through and again late into Palin's speech. Someone is embellishing Palin's great feat of delivering an attack speech.

    Haven't seen that -- got a link? (none / 0) (#25)
    by domerdem on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 09:33:14 AM EST
    The same teleprompter (none / 0) (#40)
    by IndiDemGirl on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 09:38:15 AM EST
    that had "new-clear" on it so that she didn't give the word the Bush-like pronunciation?

    You could see the prompter at several (none / 0) (#129)
    by fuzzyone on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 10:09:17 AM EST
    points, at least on PBS, and it seemed in synch, though she did seem to be looking at a printed copy of the speech at various points, which surprised me.  She also seemed awkward at the applause points, often waiting when it did not come or stepping on her own lines when it kept going

    So are you on record (none / 0) (#16)
    by Jlvngstn on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 09:30:56 AM EST
    here saying that Palin will be ready for the debates and up to par on the issues when the media questions her?  Do you think that the "i don't know what the VP does all day" is an anomaly and she has or can acquire a firm grasp on the issues for the media and the debates?

    I think sound bytes and angry sarcastic rhetoric written by someone else and delivered eloquently are not indicative of anything other than the ability to deliver a good speech.  She has 4 weeks to prepare for a debate and memorize answers to a number of pressing issues.  I predict that she will not be up to doing so.  Based on that speech and that speech alone I find it hard to believe that you can surmise that she is formidable.  Let's see how book banning, creationism and lack of achievement play out in the media and the weeks to come.

    Do you have any predictions on the economy and the next 3 months?  I am on record on this site predicting the recession, predicting the job cuts and predicting the credit/housing crisis prior to it happening.  The next two months economically speaking will be bloody awful.  How will that sit with middle americans who are well past 9-11 and care about saving their homes and getting out of debt?  I will tell you how.  It will be with rejection of the petty attack platform launched by the right and a demand for red meat that feeds the children not the kind of red meat of petty politics.....

    The republicans last night attacked like a wounded dog, I don't look at that as successful but as desperate and do not believe it will stick.  She also challenged the media which I absolutely loved as I think the MSM is a big friggin waste.  It will be interesting to see how a pit bull with lipstick fares with a pack of cannibalistic wolves....

    I do (5.00 / 6) (#28)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 09:33:55 AM EST
    I think you can see she is a skilled politician.

    BTW, when you say up on the issues - I take it as much as the Media is, which is a low bar indeed. If I am sure of one thing it is that the Media is not going to trip up anyone on any real issue - they are incompetents.

    For crissakes, all of their stories came from the Daily Kos diary list for the past 5 days - they are bumbling fools.


    and i agree (5.00 / 1) (#48)
    by Jlvngstn on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 09:41:59 AM EST
    wholeheartedly that the media has been mostly useless for at least 8 years and they have been incredibly consistent for the past 5 days.

    I think she demonstrated (none / 0) (#44)
    by Jlvngstn on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 09:40:43 AM EST
    good oratory skills, similar to Obama. I still think O is a poor debater and I think she will be also.  If she can effectively zing sound bytes without someone writing for than she will do very well, I don't think she is capable.   I also think that the further vetting process the media is going to conduct combined with her challenge to the msm will be fatal to the ticket.  After the 20 or so debates in the primaries I lost interest almost completely, with her in the race I am excited about the debates because above all else she was fun.  

    I predict at least an 8 point victory for O come November......


    I think she will be a fine debater. (5.00 / 6) (#108)
    by inclusiveheart on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 10:01:39 AM EST
    Probably better than fine.  But debate is always going to be easier for people who aren't constricted by facts and reality.

    She can read, but simialar to Obama (5.00 / 1) (#132)
    by fuzzyone on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 10:10:26 AM EST
    I think not.

    At some point she is going to have to actually sit for an interview.  I assume there is a reason she has not done so yet.


    Seems like she's done at least one. (none / 0) (#179)
    by skuld1 on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 10:28:43 AM EST
    Hopefully I link this properly.

    hey welcome back! (none / 0) (#17)
    by Capt Howdy on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 09:31:03 AM EST
    I also was surprised by that admission by Tweety.
    its what I have been saying for days.
    not about Hillary.

    It will be interesting to see Hillary's reaction (none / 0) (#19)
    by shpilk on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 09:31:30 AM EST
    Of course, it's hard to respond to a speech that has almost zero content in it, to begin with.

    Here is where I think exactly as you do Armando, having been at one time an HRC admirer: she will stand on principles and will throw it right back.

    Question is: will she?

    Hillary respond? (5.00 / 4) (#41)
    by Dave B on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 09:39:41 AM EST
    The speech was in no way shape or form about Hillary or her supporters.  Why would she respond?

    Reminds me of (none / 0) (#74)
    by Fabian on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 09:50:56 AM EST
    the worst case scenario, a Obama/Gore ticket.

    No matter what Obama said, the question would always be "What does Gore say?".  Fortunately, I don't think that will happen with Biden.

    Hillary should be used (yes, I mean "used") judiciously and sparingly or the media will start talking about her again and not Obama.


    Obama's Media Darling Status (none / 0) (#26)
    by Dave B on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 09:33:22 AM EST
    I'd be interested to hear if you think Obama will continue to retain the media darling that persuaded you into supporting him?

    Of course (none / 0) (#30)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 09:34:40 AM EST
    Do you doubt it?

    I'm questioning his status (5.00 / 1) (#37)
    by Dave B on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 09:37:15 AM EST
    After watching the love that  Palin was getting from the MSOBAMA and CNN crews last night and this morning.

    I am afraid to the media (none / 0) (#52)
    by Capt Howdy on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 09:43:01 AM EST
    he could become yesterdays news.
    we will see.  they have been pretty brutal to her and she was not mending any fences last night.

    It's been 6 months since Obana was media darling (none / 0) (#72)
    by Don in Seattle on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 09:49:37 AM EST
    Granted, he caught some very favorable press after Iowa, and during his streak of wins in Frbruary. After that, not so much.

    I'm not complaining. The fact that Chris Matthews has a jones for your candidate is not such a structural advantage as you might think.

    Press idolatry follows the sense that a candidate is a winner, not a leading indicator. If Obama gets 270 electoral votes, the press will love him; if he gets 268, he'll be John Kerry with a tan. That's how the press is.


    No, if press idolotry followed the polls, Clinton (5.00 / 1) (#147)
    by jawbone on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 10:17:21 AM EST
    (Bill Clinton) would have been a media darling thrugh most of his presidency. That stopped almost with his first Inauguration Day.

    Why do you feel Obama has not been a media darling since Iowa?

    At the library, I was glancing through a stack of Newsweek magazines someone had left in a pile: I was stunned at the number of Obama cover photos, all very flattering. I didn't count, as I was idly glancing through.

    I recall some lowering of the intensity of the glow, but the glow is still there, I think.


    Bill Clinton was puttimg out the fires of (none / 0) (#201)
    by Don in Seattle on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 10:36:09 AM EST
    personal scandal starting with New Hampshire '92. To some extent he short-circuited the normal arc of the press narrative, by claiming "comeback kid" status the first time he won anything in a national campaign. (Actually before he won anything -- didn't Clinton finish second in NH '92?)

    Nevertheless, iirc, Bill Clinton got more or less the traditional 100-day honeymoon after his first inauguration.


    Before last night (none / 0) (#66)
    by IndiDemGirl on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 09:48:53 AM EST
    she had high favorables in the polls. Those opinions didn't necessarily translate into votes, but still were something to build on.

    After last night's speech I'd bet those favorables will drop for all those who are not diehard Repubs.  

    I think she may have fired up the base (5.00 / 1) (#116)
    by stefystef on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 10:03:14 AM EST
    and given an option for people who did not like Obama, but was unsure of McCain.

    Her jabs at Obama are the same jabs I've read on many blogs and message boards.  Her sentiments are not isolated.  I fear there is a segment of the society that is not being polled correctly and may be the thorn in Obama's side.


    In what way does she give ... (none / 0) (#189)
    by santarita on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 10:32:47 AM EST
    people an option?  She's not running as a third party candidate.  She shores up the evangelical side, maybe.  She might appeal to rural voters and small town voters but the economy is hurting those folks and the Iraq War is not popular with most demographics.  

    Her speech was full of attacks on the usual topics and was pretty much a bunch of Republican one-liners.  Maybe for some it crystallized why they will vote for McCain but it wasn't a very persuasive speech for true independents.


    Addressing the Media Narrative (none / 0) (#76)
    by Roz on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 09:51:10 AM EST
    I don't disagree with your analysis, but I think the campaign's hands were somewhat tied because of the volume and tone of the attacks that have unfolded ever since she became McCain's choice for VP. Not only was it necessary to counter the media narrative, it was an opportunity to hit back at the media and "Washington elites," and the campaign seized it.

    But I agree she/they missed the opportunity as well. She should have spent at least 5 minutes talking about how McCain-Palin policies would help the middle class. There didn't have to be a lot of detail. Biden's now jumping into that void.

    She's clearly not going to try to remake herself into Hillary Clinton. That's not who she is. And I don't think its necessary, nor would it go over well.

    Attacking the Media was fine (5.00 / 1) (#90)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 09:54:24 AM EST
    The failure to identify in an issues oriented way with the problems of working class voters was the mistake.

    McCain's Job Tonight, I think. (none / 0) (#194)
    by santarita on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 10:34:46 AM EST
    Although I don't disagree with you that a little meat along with the snark might have helped give her more gravitas.

    Indeed Palin (none / 0) (#80)
    by Lahdee on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 09:52:21 AM EST
    is an unknown quantity and the red meat was tainted by her lack of credibility, but that doesn't matter to McCain. He now has an attack dog, and a right wing religious hero, whose credibility is deemed sacrosanct. Criticize her and risk that good old righteous republican wrath, pundit hysteria and cries of liberal media.

    The lack of Hillary may have been purposeful. Compare Sarah Palin to Hillary Clinton? Hah, that would have been just plain pathetic.

    I kept thinking of... (none / 0) (#85)
    by EL seattle on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 09:53:16 AM EST
    ... the choice of Clarence Thomas for the Supreme Court.  He didn't have much of resume, and didn't shown much in the way of exceptional judicial thought.  But he was an African American, and that provided the Republicans with a token choice that the could point to to diffuse/clutter anyone's charges that they weren't working to make "progress" on racial matters.

    It's too bad.  Western Republicans often can be independent "live and let live" people, as opposed to the general "do as I say" Republican Party of the past few years.  It's sad to see someone who you could expect to show some spark for independent thought take the podium and merely parrot the usual Bush talking points, just acting like a toadie.

    Spot on analysis . (none / 0) (#101)
    by Same As It Ever Was on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 09:58:30 AM EST
    While I found her performance only passable and the positive reviews of her political skills a result of low expectations, her speech was ineffective at anything other than riling the base.  If anything, she turned off voters who might have been open to persuasion.

    The Obama campaign is taking the right approach and trying to refocus the discussion on John McCain.  They ran a "More of the Same" ad during the morning shows this morning here in Florida.  McCain's speech tonight will hopefully return the focus to where it needs to be.  Palin has been a very effective distraction and created openings through which to attack Obama on experience.  Hopefully, the campaign will not rise to the bait.

    In NYC on ABC (5.00 / 1) (#173)
    by stefystef on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 10:27:21 AM EST
    I saw my first McCain commercial.  So both campaigns are getting ready to push hard.

    I better keep my remote nearby because I hate political commercials.  There will be alot of channel surfing.


    Good Post BTD & (none / 0) (#114)
    by obamahasmyvote on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 10:03:03 AM EST
    I seldom agree with you.

    Your point that Hillary Clinton did include the working class in her campaign as she went along is a great one.


    According to HuffPost, two Focus groups of women were appalled by Palin/Tina Fey's nastiness.

    I kept waiting for her to introduce Gilbert Gottfried, because after Rudy's put down of American Opportunity (Only in America, he said of Obama, and the crowd laughed as though he were saying Bob Saget had sex with the Olson Twins), it was clear that this convention is:

    The RNC Roast of Barack Obama

    I enjoyed the speech (none / 0) (#134)
    by cawaltz on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 10:12:10 AM EST
    I think issues will be secondary to biography. It's the choice that was made when "historic candidacies" were bought into(Quite frankly I do not feel the least bit sorry because the DnC walked right into it by not making it about issues during the primary). I think she did attack dog very well and I while I don't agree with her on many issues I think she came across well. I think that she may have vied from issues to try and capture as many disenfranchised Hillary supporters(and where she stands on stuff like choice would be a bit of a turn off for those).

    BTD, I'm not sure she was aiming ... (none / 0) (#141)
    by Robot Porter on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 10:14:43 AM EST
    for that voter block.  I saw it more as an appeal to the base, and an appeal to the libertarian minded, Perot-type voter.

    Perhaps she might have peppered the speech with some of the Republican style populism that Huckabee uses, but there are pitfalls in going down that road.

    And think some of that was subtextually there in her manner, biography and delivery.

    But I agree there's always been a big opening for Democrats on the issue of jobs and the economy, and fighting for the little guy.  And if they hit hard on those issues, they will probably be able to blunt any momentum that Palin has given McCain.

    But will they?

    I see the base (none / 0) (#169)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 10:26:18 AM EST
    I do not see the Perot voter being a significant bloc anymore.

    You do not disagree with my view of her speech, you seem to disagree that it was a mistake.


    Ignore? (none / 0) (#155)
    by thentro on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 10:20:34 AM EST
    I feel like the logical response to your tactics would be for everyone to just ignore the volumes of muck that have come to the surface about Palin just because some of that muck is pushed by the national enquirer and/or Andrew Sullivan. That is silly. Palin is a huge rallying point for republicans and in many ways this past week has made her larger than John McCain! They are the ones who raised her up. They decided to make this race Palin vs Obama. It was a foolish over reaching move that is going to really hurt and confuse the McCain message. And you seem to be arguing that Democrats shouldn't take such low hanging fruit because there is some kind of Rovian hook in it? I don't buy it.

    Interesting (5.00 / 2) (#163)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 10:24:31 AM EST
    Low haning fruit because of her lack of experience? Did you see the piece of fruit hanging right beside it?

    Not experence (none / 0) (#204)
    by thentro on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 10:37:14 AM EST
    I am thinking more about the TPM drill of abuse of power investigations including her desire to fire her cities librarian for not wanting to ban books from the library! Her aggressive pork spending which leads into lying about the "bridge to nowhere" on national TV twice. Ted Stevens connections. Her radical fundamentalist church and how it shapes her political views. Her sympathy and support for a radical Alaskan Independence party.

    Not to mention McCain's judgment for selecting her after apparently several hours of vetting.

    That is all low hanging fruit, so you get to choose what to pick. Some of it is rotten, (anything involving a baby for example) and unfortunately will get a lot of curiosity. But why pass on the rest of it?


    Time may run out. (none / 0) (#164)
    by mmc9431 on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 10:24:42 AM EST
    Her speech is done. She did what she had to. Forunately it wasn't what it could have been. Now Obama, his surrogates and the blogs need to focus on the issues. (This was to be the campaign of new and positive politics).  As long as she remains the story, the Republican's can hide from their record. There may not be as much time as some think to make this point. There's 3 storms in the Atlantic that could hit the US. That could easily eat up 3 weeks of media focus on the election. We need to take advantage of the time allowed.

    McCain seems to be running as Goldwater with (none / 0) (#177)
    by esmense on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 10:28:36 AM EST
    a female Spiro Agnew at his side. 40+ years on, babbling about the "Eastern establishment" still seems like a fresh idea to him.

    The truth is, both campaigns (McCain's and Obama's) are too reactive, too biography centric, too lacking in actually NEW ideas, too unconnected to the current challenges of ordinary people, and totally lacking in genuine vision.

    I wonder if, after the record turnout in the primaries, we aren't headed for a low turnout election in which large numbers of people are too burnt out by the pointlessness and negativity to turn out and vote.    

    Hocky (none / 0) (#180)
    by thentro on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 10:28:51 AM EST
    One other point that crossed my mind, to Americans really like/get/watch hockey? I live in Minnesota so everyone "likes hockey" but really not many people watch it. I suppose "hockey mom" converts easily to "[sports]  mom" but still, I wonder how well that line works in real life.

    It is spelled "Hockey" (none / 0) (#183)
    by thentro on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 10:30:01 AM EST

    I think that fact that most people don't know (none / 0) (#206)
    by Marvin42 on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 10:39:55 AM EST
    how to spell hockey answers part of your question! :)

    Clark (none / 0) (#186)
    by Gustavion on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 10:31:27 AM EST
    I'm a bit worried about the McCain/Palin energy policy.  (Especially drilling in ANWR)  I think that one of the best things we can do is support 'green' business.  For example, http://www.simplestop.net stops your postal junk mail and benefits the environment.

    Interesting takes, (none / 0) (#190)
    by scribe on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 10:32:52 AM EST
    both yours, BTD, and the one on German radio's news-commentary:  "She brought a knife to a gunfight."

    different approach, same space (none / 0) (#197)
    by souvarine on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 10:35:10 AM EST
    I disagree. Republicans cannot win working class voters by appealing to issues, they do not put a priority on working class interests. Palin did two things, she demonstrated working class credibility and prepared the ground for the politics of resentment against Obama.

    The Republican party is not a broad coalition like the Democratic coalition, they are a narrow coalition. They win by dividing the Democratic coalition. Palin enumerated how Obama is the other to working class voters in a way that Hillary Clinton could never get away with.

    I know this will be deleted because (none / 0) (#207)
    by txpolitico67 on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 10:40:30 AM EST
    you have banned me from your threads, but as someone who worked on Ann Richards' campaign, met her personally, I am way offended that your compare that right wing nutjob to Ann Richards.

    Ann Richards was a great example of an enlightened and devoted liberal.  Sarah Palin?  Gimme a freaking break!  She's not worthy of carrying Ann Richards' shoes, much less being compared to her on ANYTHING.

    Palin an elitist (none / 0) (#221)
    by Rashomon66 on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 11:42:47 AM EST
    Let me just say that her Community Organizer comment was elitist. She is saying regular people who try to fill in the holes and help the people that the government won't help have no responsibilities. I'm sorry but most mayors, governor's and politicians rarely get out into the communities and really get to know the people. The only time they do is when they make an appearance to tell everyone they are running for office. Otherwise they usually hold meetings and sign bills that help businessmen. Being a mayor is a worthy political job but being a Community organizer says something about who a person is and what there values are. I'm sure some of you have done community service work - it is rewarding and gets you in touch with people in ways you cannot as a politician.

    Secured her place on the ticket (none / 0) (#222)
    by KeysDan on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 12:21:33 PM EST
    if nothing else and McCain, visibility,  seemed to show a sigh of relief.  As I expected, the speech would be well-written as a result of the best Republican speechwriters.  Her delivery, just as expected, was very good and should not have been so surprising, after all, she is a governor and public speaking is not unfamiliar to her, and she has been a popular guest of many radio talk shows (not Air America you can bet). But, BTD is spot on with the missed opportunity to have her go beyond being a pit bull.  Indeed, in my view the tone, while wildly received by the party faithful, also missed an opportunity.  Ms. Palin may have wanted to come across as tough and don't mess with me or my McCain, but rather, she conveyed meanness. Not a winning perception, unless she is determined to follow Cheney is both policies and demeanor.

    Ann Richards! (none / 0) (#223)
    by indie in CA on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 12:24:15 PM EST
    Instead she gave a sort of Republican version of Ann Richards' 1988 Democratic Convention keynote speech.

    And the problem with this is ...?

    "I'm not going to Washington to seek their good opinion. I'm going to Washington to serve the people of this great country."

    Big Tent Democrat, (none / 0) (#225)
    by Mr Natural on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 01:02:40 PM EST
    I wish you well.

    But I think you're a bit optimistic in dismissing the way she addressed the issues of working class voters.

    She's actually living those issues, something that can't be said about any of the other candidates.

    Actions speak much, much louder than words.  That will resonate with a lot of voters.  

    Were you watching the same speech??? (none / 0) (#226)
    by goldberry on Thu Sep 04, 2008 at 01:04:40 PM EST
    She appealed to working class people quite well.  I think Tweety is looking for specific words and there were a few of them.  But more than that, it is who she and her family are that made it unnecessary to go on at length.  All my sources say she is refeshingly down to earth and unaffected.  THAT'S what makes her the living embodiment of working class values.  Whether she is or not is another story.  She is a Republican but they sure know how to pick'em.  
    What you may have missed, but is likely to be brought up again tonight, are the memes that were presented in Fred Thompson's speech that are directed at disaffected Clintonistas: John McCain personifies rebellion, independence, standing up to power.  Very potent.  It's sort of like being a Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Model with PhD in Architecture except it's a makeover for the "shrieking hordes of paranoid holdouts" that are the Clintonistas.  Who among us wouldn't like to think of ourselves as rebellious, independent, powerful and tenacious?  
    Should be a piece of cake for McCain.  Let's watch tonight and see.  Pass the popcorn and a beer!

    Palin's speech and me (none / 0) (#227)
    by Amiss on Fri Sep 05, 2008 at 12:36:02 AM EST
    I came around to TL right after the primaries began, and I have mostly just lurked, I was a Hillary supporter from the very beginning. I am from Florida and I was truly pissed about the way our votes were taken away and Obama's part in it. So I have been sitting on the fence for months. I watched everything I could at the Democratic convention, and especially Bill and Hillary. One remark by Hillary was a question to her supporters if they were just about her or was it about what she stood for. I saw Obama's speech and was very impressed, but was still on the fence as to whether I could in good conscience vote for him. I decided to check out Sarah Palin's speech last nite and sure enough I found the answer in her attacks on the democrats about the very core issues I have always held close and it sealed the deal for me to run as hard as I could and I finally realized there was only one person I could vote for and that was Obama, even tho he is no Hillary, like she said, if I believed as she did, then I could not in good conscience vote for McCain and Palin sealed the deal for me.