Politics

The Sarah Palin Rumor Mill

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At VicePresidents.com, we first wrote about Sarah Palin back in December 2007 when we found that there was, in fact, ONE person actively campaigning for the Vice Presidency. Typically this move is a deal breaker for many politicians and is the unspoken rule: Don’t act like you want it.

Back then, this is what we had to say:

One blogger said the ideal ticket would be a Giuliani Presidency, backed by the fresh face of a woman VP. Sarah obtained a degree in journalism before serving as a two-term mayor of Wasilla and as President of the Alaska Conference of Mayors. She’s especially noted for immediately following her pledge to sell the Westwind II jet that had been purchased by taxpayer money by the previous administration. She cut the enormous construction budget in half and put energy as one of her top priorities. An August poll gave her governorship an 85% approval rating — heralded as the highest in the nation. The question is: How would Judith feel about a woman VP?

Again, we mentioned her in February…

As you may recall, we first mentioned Governor of Alaska Sarah Palin as a potential VEEP just over a month ago. Her campaign for the #2 Spot has been picking up steam on the front page of the Anchorage Daily News and Alaska Magazine, as well as radio talk shows like BlogTalkRadio and AKRadio.org to name a few! It seems that VP-Mania is kicking off in full force. Here at VicePresidents.com, we can’t help but admire those gutsy enough to campaign for VP!

Since then, she’s been mentioned avidly by the underground who has been touting her as an obvious choice all along. Mainstream media has been focusing more on the candidates who held the national spotlight. To choose an unknown dark horse candidate would be so… Maverick… and that’s exactly what McCain needed to do strategically. While everyone was touting Obama’s convention as “historic,” McCain knew a Romney wouldn’t do. Additionally, McCain needed someone who would be content with the “place holder” role he had in store for them. A Romney or other seasoned statesman may not have been comfortable with an in-the-shadows role. Moreover, a McCain-Lieberman would have been historic in a sense (with an ex-VEEP / Democrat-turned-Republican on the ticket) and they are very compatible, but his base would have been rattled by Liebermans’ pro-choice stance and other issues.   

I think in many ways there’s so much to love about Governor Palin — a strong woman who’s as unafraid to hunt moose as she is to buck her own party when she needs to. Ideologically, there’s no doubt she’s a Republican with a Conservative touch, but she also has different ideas about economic issues and energy. You have to appreciate someone who is willing to cut her own salary, sell the state’s taxpayer-purchased private jet and cut wasteful pork barrel projects. She’s worked as a city councilmember (2 terms), a mayor and a governor (2 years). The first word out of the Obama Camp was that she has no foreign policy experience… but to paint her as “inexperienced,” overall, is naive.

But almost immediately the rumor mill began grinding away in other areas… The UK Times says she’s embroiled in an investigation for abuse of power, CBS says she’s guilty of trying marijuana in her reckless youth, the Seattle Times mentions she supported windfall taxes on big oil companies (which John McCain and other Republicans oppose) and the LA Times claims her husband Todd worked for BP Oil Company raking in over $120,000 annually but later quit over conflict of interest when Sarah became governor. 

As the nation gets introduced to Sarah Palin, competing narratives will surface — but whose will be the strongest? The theme of both campaigns are beginning to hone in on the same focus: Middle America, Small-Town America, Maverick America, Blue Collar America, Family America. The question will loom until November: Who’s America do you want to live in?