As a long-time Hillary Clinton supporter I can speak of the importance of having a female viewpoint in our national political stage , but I can't offer a first-person expression of the kind of insulting pandering McCain has accomplished with the decision to go with Alaskan newbie-governor Sarah Palin as his VP choice.
In my view, it smacks of political desperation. The kind of desperate grab at what, without thinking it all the way through, might have seemed like a good idea for the first 30 seconds. My guess is that 30 seconds is about as long as McCain gave this idea. Big mistake. He lost the election with this choice, in my estimation.
It demonstrates the shallowness of the Republican view of women in politics, as was clearly exemplified by the fact that no women were standing among the dozen white, male candidates seeking the Republican nomination.
But suddenly, a few days after Hillary Clinton is officially shut out of the Democratic ticket, John McCain has an idea. Seeing polls that show a still significant number of Clinton supporters who have not yet pledged fully behind Obama, the gears are put into motion that will insure a Democratic victory in November -- John McCain ignores his chief argument against Barack Obama -- that our nation will not be safe under an Obama presidency because of Obama's experience level -- and selects a woman with zero experience in national politics and zero foreign policy experience, and someone that he doesn't even know.
Grabbed off the plains of Alaska as a perfect choice to be one heartbeat away from the oval office because -- hey -- the polls say it's worth a point or two.
Which is where John McCain made his second mistake, and gave away the second argument he's used successfully against Obama. That Barack was putting his own election above the interests of the nation -- and now that's exactly what McCain did in the selection of Palin -- selecting a foreign policy novice that would -- McCain has been arguing -- put our nation's security at risk, and he did so simply because it gives him a chance at a few extra voters in November.
But I'm not surprised John McCain has no concept of the insult he gave women in choosing Palin -- in suggesting that female Democrats aren't issues voters, concerned about the economy, about Iraq, about a sensible energy policy, about national health care.
No, John McCain thinks that any woman, even one like Palin who's views on those issues is the exact opposite of Clinton's, will win those reluctant Clinton voters simply because she's a woman.
Simply -- that' s dead wrong. Meet Giovanna Negretti:
I actually used to like Senator McCain. Years ago, I heard him speak once at a convention in Washington DC. I was mostly impressed by his decency and compassion. During the Republican debates, when he promised a campaign that would be free of character slandering, I was equally impressed. However, the candidate I am seeing now is very different from the Senator I heard in 2002 and the one that ran during the primaries. It is actually disappointing to me because I was looking forward to an election that focused on honest debates and intelligent discussions around issues and policies important to the American people and the world. Instead, what I see candidate McCain doing is buying into the political tactics that we have seen in the past 8 years. His recent selection for VP just confirms this.
I find it incredibly startling that McCain would choose a person he hardly knows for a job as important as the Vice Presidency of the United States. It is so obvious that he is doing this as a political tactic that it makes me question his judgment. Is that the way he will make decisions about our economy, our security, our well-being as a nation? If, God forbid, Senator McCain dies during his presidency then he will entrust this nation with a person with zero foreign affairs experience, whom he hardly knows to be the Commander in Chief? How irresponsible is that?
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I can appreciate that this is a historic moment for women but what is insulting and shameful is that it comes as a result of political tactics and not merits. As a woman, I am insulted. I can't help but asking how does he dare insult the intelligence of millions of women who voted for Clinton with this tactic of trying to appeal to them by choosing a woman with no qualifications as a vice presidential candidate. What does he think, that women are stupid? Or is he implying that people supported Hillary just because she was a woman? People supported Hillary because they thought she was the best qualified person for the job. It just so happened that she was a woman, which made the decision to support her even more exciting.
I have watched with dismay how John McCain has transformed his message from the Primary to now. This VP pick really surprised me because at the very core, I wanted to believe that Senator McCain would come to his senses and run a decent campaign based on respect and dignity. However, now, I agree with Senator John Kerry, who said it best at the Convention last week: "Before [John McCain] ever debates Barack Obama, John McCain should finish the debate with himself."
Prior to her two-year stint as Governor of the U.S. state that ranks 47th in population, Palin served as the mayor of Wasilla, Alaska for a couple of years.
And was it her 'experience' that drove McCain to chose Palin for his ticket over an experienced executive like Mitt Romney or Tim Pawlenty?
No, what drove John McCain to chose someone he didn't he even know well -- and someone who's not anywhere near as qualified as Hillary Clinton -- was the simple fact that she was female and a Republican.
Our nation's welfare comes in second -- just like with George Bush -- when Republicans are making a grab for control.
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