Upper Left Coast

Thoughts on politics, faith, sports and other random topics from a red state sympathizer in indigo-blue Portland, Oregon.

Monday, August 25, 2008

Palin or Pawlenty

I agree with this reasoning from Lisa Schiffren on National Review today, particularly her thoughts on Mitt Romney:

Pundits are making the wrong call when they look for the GOP vice-presidential candidate who will be best in policy in debates with Biden, or who will be a more useful attack dog. To be sure, those are important tasks. And it is true that Mitt Romney could do them very well — and that he spots Biden a bunch of I.Q. points, an education and a record of accomplishment. But can Mitt successfully empathize with the middle class for the duration of this campaign and after? He couldn't do it in the primaries. It isn't who he is.

Because Biden is essentially a mediocrity, McCain has more leeway than expected to choose someone who is not entirely prime-time ready. We are back to the two governors who are young, totally real, quintessentially middle class family guys, and, like Joe Biden, up from working class backgrounds: Sarah Palin of Alaska and Tim Pawlenty of Minnesota. She is less sophisticated, but is a walking testament to American middle class pluck and achievement. And she will pull some female Democrat voters in. He is smart, good on policy, and has an excellent, first-generation-to-college, up by the bootstraps story. Because they really are middle-class Americans, middle-class American voters are far more likely to believe it when either of them express empathy and a desire to tackle the nation's economic anxieties. That will be the campaign's central issue, and there is no faking it.

Romney's money and his sometimes-robotic persona are likely to be a stumbling block in this regard and, in my opinion, his economic credentials are not sufficient to overcome those issues.

The only hesitation I would have in Schiffren's opinion about potential VP selections is regarding Pawlenty. The times I have heard him speak, my thoughts have been: solid on policy, and a great antidote to insomnia. The man is a bore, and like it or not, John McCain has to think about personality as much as he does about policy.

Why? Because Lisa Schiffren is right: one (perhaps the) central issue of the campaign will be the economy. McCain has already demonstrated with his how-many-houses-do-I-have gaffe that he's vulnerable, and he needs a likable and genuine person in the No. 2 slot to help him reach the middle class that the Democrats so want to persuade.

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  • At 8/25/2008 10:25 AM, Blogger Ted said…

    Despite the Dems and the allied main stream media’s desperation to see Romney as McCain’s Veep, Mitt is clearly out, with (1) Obama doubling down on the class warfare theme (McCain’s 7 houses) and (2) McCain doubling down with ads showing the hypocrisy of Biden attacking Obama in the primaries — Romney did way more than that contra McCain.

    This leaves only Govs Sarah Palin and Tim Pawlenty. Pro-abortion Ridge and Dem-Lieberman were never real considerations, despite relentless media goading. Pawlenty’s lackluster TV performances, coupled with Palin pizzazz, the primacy of oil drilling and the ticked off women/Hillary voters, does now portend a McCain/Palin checkmate on the Dems. This is so albeit the Dems and liberal media dare not mention Palin’s name, that is, everyone but…..

    And if there’s any question as to Palin being uniquely positioned and able to more than nullify Biden in debate, see the excellent discussion at palinforvp.blogspot.com

    Team McCain, well done!!!

  • At 8/25/2008 8:37 PM, Blogger OregonGuy said…

    There's another name I wished were mentioned. Tom Coburn.

    Mid-west. Solid. Smart. And now that Obama has chosen another Senator, the two senator curse is out.

    One side will win.

  • At 8/26/2008 6:45 AM, Blogger Paul said…

    Palin is the best choice on many fronts. Please looks us up and join the movement!

    Contact John & Sarah and let them know of your desires.

    Join us!

  • At 8/26/2008 2:52 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    John Engler.

    Three term Michigan governor.

    Long time local politician before that.

    CEO of the National Association of Manufacturers.

    Economic powerhouse.



    PRO-LIFE Catholic! Someone real Catholics can get behind!

    "Regular guy."

    He is a little younger and more energetic than McCain, but not a rookie by any means. He would probably be like Cheney and retire after 8 years as VP, clearing the way for a more experienced SENATOR Palin to run for President, without wasting time as VP.

    Oh, and did I mention he will win Michigan? That all but guarantees McCain wins the electoral vote.

    John Engler.

  • At 8/26/2008 5:28 PM, Blogger Ted said…

    VEEP Debates Q&A

    QUESTION: How will Sarah Palin do in a debate with Joe Biden?

    ANSWER: How many men watching will be aware that Biden is in the room?

  • At 8/26/2008 10:54 PM, Blogger Ted said…

    Theme song for the Sarah Palin VP intro at RNC next week:



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