Saturday, August 30, 2008

McCain Comes Through

It's no secret that I have not been a big fan of John McCain. The only one lower on my list during the primaries was Ron Paul. It wasn't because I necessarily disagreed with all of Paul's ideas, but more because the guy comes off as a nut case. It's hard to take him seriously.

McCain, to me, represented everything that's gone wrong with the Republican party...a complete loss of conservative principles. For me, the label "maverick" could just as easily be exchanged for "disloyal."

Consequently, I haven't been too engaged in the current political process other than as a casual observer, while cautiously awaiting McCain's VP choice. For me, everything hinged on that selection.

The hubbub that swirled around his decision-making process didn't leave much hope.

Choosing Joe Lieberman would have only confirmed that McCain is really just a Democrat in an old elephant suit.

Talk of Tim Pawlenty wasn't much improvement. We Minnesota conservatives haven't been impressed with his performance, and his misguided views on energy policy and global warming have all but written him off in my book.

I hadn't heard of Sarah Palin until Newt Gingrich mentioned her name and gave a brief bio on a political talk show a few months ago. She sounded interesting, but her name never surfaced in recent discussions of McCain's vetting process.

So when he announced her selection yesterday, then gave us a chance to see and hear her first-hand, I was blown away.

Here's a woman who's bright, articulate, beautiful and has an impressive track record. She's run and won at the local level, then the state level. She's stood up to the "old boy" networks and special interests and stared them down. She's lived out her faith and values in an impressive manner. And all this was accomplished while being a devoted wife and mother.

Now the democrats are trying to shift the focus from Obama's inexperience (I mean, seriously, talk about a completely empty suit) to Palin's experience.

I don't think it will work.

Her track record of accomplishments if far more impressive than his. She had been serving in elected office five years before Obama stumbled into the Illinois legislature. She was taking stands and making decisions while Obama was voting "present" on difficult issues (130 times) rather taking a stand he could be held accountable for later on.

As a Governor, the buck stopped at her desk. Gov. Mike Huckabee said recently that as a governor one has to make more command decisions in a day than a typical year in Congress where things languish through endless committee hearings before any decisions are ever made.

McCain's selection of Palin has energized the Republican base like no other candidate I can imagine. I'm energized....even willing to contribute once again to the RNC! Just knowing someone with her values and judgement will have the ear of John McCain gives me hope, and I will work for her election.

Maybe there's hope afterall.

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