Hey, I have friends all over the political spectrum, and I want to keep you all. I am a firm believer that who we vote for and why we vote for that person is intensely personal, and I know for myself it is rarely an easy, cut and dried decision. That said, I won’t be endorsing, or not endorsing, just reporting.
So, it’s a big day for the Republican party, and a HUGE day for Alaska. The first woman to be on a Republican national ticket, and she is from Alaska of all places.
I gotta tell you, the air here in Anchorage (and I would imagine all of Alaska) is totally electric. It is pretty exciting to have someone from “home” making this kind of news, no matter what your party.
This is what I know. Alaska loves Sarah Palin, polls put her approval ratings at 80%+. Most of the people we have talked to over the last month feel she has done a good job, that she is a good person. During the time she was mayor of Wasilla, the town we lived in prior to moving to the Midwest, she brought a lot of new development to the area, and I don’t remember a lot of controversy. And I can tell you this: she has really nice parents. We attended church with them for several years (and yes, during that time, met Sarah on more than one occasion). That is the extent of my personal knowledge of Sarah Palin.
Now let me tell you what I think about McCain’s choosing Palin: It is an inspired choice. (no matter what side of the aisle you come down on, it is a gutsy move).
I have been saying for a long time (since Palin was elected Gov about 2 years ago, ask my mom, or my friend Kathie Bouchard, they have heard this many times), that she is a gift to the Republican party. No doubt about it, she is the fresh face the party has been waiting for. Lay it out… she is young, attractive, a mother, her husband was a stay at home dad for a time so she could pursue her career, she takes on corruption, she is pro gun, pro oil, pro life, she hunts, fishes, she has a son in the military, the list goes on and on.
So, from that perspective she is the best choice for McCain to try and capture some of the excitement that has been generated with Obama’s charisma and charm. Do I think this choice wraps up the election for the Republicans? Naw. I think it means that the Republican party is not completely dead in this race, and I think it means the Democrats are going to have to work a little harder to keep the momentum going. I think it will make the race a lot more interesting, at least from an Alaska point of view.
It will be fun to see what people around here do in the coming months. I am guessing we will not see too many McCain/Palin yard signs and bumper stickers, but knowing Alaskans, we will see loads of Palin/McCain signs, Alaska pride runs deep.