While Governor Palin performed to my expectations, i.e., she was spunky and likable. However, she spoke in generalities, stuck to talking points, over did it with the folksy act, and repeated many of the McCain misstatements about Obama's record. Palin lost points by:
- Failing to identify a single area where she or John McCain would change George W. Bush's economic or foreign policy positions.
- Refusing to defend John McCain's record as a deregulation hawk.
- Pandering to the Jewish vote by promising relocate the U.S. embassy to Jerusalem--a move that would escalate tensions in the Mideast.
- Seeming unmoved by Biden's emotional moment re: the near death of his son.
- Talking a great deal about corruption on Wall Street and blunders in the mishandling of the war, but offering no specifics for fixing any of the problems.
- Supporting Cheney's dangerous idea that the office of the VP is not part of the executive branch and, therefore, not subject to the laws governing it.
- Believing the VP is entitled to a significant legislative role.
- Refusing to directly answer many of the questions.
We'll see what the consensus is on the winner --- and whether it can game the game. I don't think so.
Joe Biden won the debate about who's best for '08. He helped his ticket's cause by presenting himself as someone who understands the need to change Washington -- and is ready to lead.
Sarah Palin won the first round of a longer contest for the hearts of the GOP's critical social conservative constituency with her spirited performance. She's reclaimed her political viability -- and her focus should be on the future since the McCain '08 campaign is but a short-term platform of opportunity.
Palin could very well win the GOP nomination for Alaska U.S. Senator and/or President down the road. But it'll be important now for her to do more interviews with conservative and christian media, speaking engagements with social conservative groups, and fund raising.
In order To fly, Palin will first have to escape from the moldy and confused cell McCain has put her in.