Why the panicked rush to choose Palin? What's behind this desperation move (besides bowing deeply to the religious right extremists that apparently still run the Republican Party)?
It's not too late to right this wrong, Mr. McCain.
From the Washington Post:
Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin was not subjected to a lengthy in-person background interview with the head of Sen. John McCain's vice presidential vetting team until last Wednesday in Arizona, the day before McCain asked her to be his running mate, and she did not disclose the fact that her 17-year-old daughter was pregnant until that meeting, two knowledgeable McCain officials acknowledged Tuesday.
Sitting around a dining room table, the McCain team has talked to her about Iraq, energy and the economy, but has focused on what she should say in her speech, struggling almost as hard as she has to prepare for what will be, along with a debate in October, her main opportunity to shape the way she is viewed by voters. Not anticipating that McCain would choose a woman as his running mate, the speech that was prepared in advance was "very masculine," according to campaign manager Rick Davis, and "we had to start from scratch."
Obvious signs, important only in that they further illustrate the fact that not enough time was taken to full vet Sarah Palin.
McCain can correct his mistake and replace Palin - and it'll be a lot easier if he does so before she accepts the nomination.
With reporters and opposition researchers crawling through Alaska, and with the McCain campaign having dispatched its own team of lawyers to re-vet Palin, Republicans are wondering what shoe might drop next. If further revelations prove damaging enough, McCain could decide to replace Palin or she could choose to withdraw. While such an event seems unlikely given her popularity in some quarters of the party--Jacob Heilbrunn has suggested that social conservatives would view her ouster as "political infidelity"--her rocky reception makes the "Eagleton scenario," and how it might unfold, a subject of more than academic interest.
Interviews with Republicans and legal experts today shed light on how the process could play out. At any point before tomorrow night, McCain could simply replace Palin. But once she formally accepts her nomination, he'll no longer have the power to do so unilaterally. According to Ben Ginsberg, the former general council at the Republican National Committee, Republican rules stipulate that the 168 members of the national committee would need to ratify any replacement to make it official. The process falls under Republican Rule Number 9(a): "The Republican National Committee is hereby authorized and empowered to fill any and all vacancies which may occur by reason of death, declination, or otherwise of the Republican candidate for President of the United States or the Republican candidate for Vice President of the United States, as nominated by the national convention, or the Republican National Committee may reconvene the national convention for the purpose of filling any such vacancies."
Nothing would shed John McCain in a better light than him stepping forward now and fixing this mistake. McCain has a million-dollar opportunity here, to drop Palin and give the Veep spot to Pawlenty, who it appears was his second choice.
Will John McCain act in the best interests of this country? Or has John McCain the Maverick already become John McCain the Sidekick - kowtowing to the extremists on the right that would rather have a social conservative like Palin as President than John McCain himself?
Those are the people John McCain is placating with the Palin pick - the religious extremists on the right who can't stand McCain to begin with.
It's time to fix this mistake, Mr. McCain, and give America viable choices in November election. Obama and Biden represent the very best of the Democratic Party. Sarah Palin is not the very best that the Republican Party has to offer, and the United States of America deserves better.
Note: Wizbang Blue is now closed and our authors have moved on. Paul Hooson can now be found at Wizbang Pop!. Please come see him there!