Sarah Palin will give her acceptance speech tonight at the Republican convention. This will be the second time the American people will hear her make a major speech--the first time when she accepted McCain's nomination. Seven days ago, no one, except Alaskans and some RNC honchos knew who she was. McCain had spoken to her exactly once before he offered to have her run for the VP spot on the Republican ticket. Once.
I heard a teevee pundit ask this very interesting question this am: What would the American people think of a president who spoke to a person only ONCE and then named him or her his Secretary of State? How about Secy. of Treasury? Defense? We the people would think the president was reckless. And yet McCain has placed this woman, whom he spoke with only ONCE, in the position of being a heartbeat away from the presidency. Think of it.
The cynical claims coming from the Right that Palin and Obama have the same amount of experience, that Palin in fact has more experience since she's held a position as an executive, are specious and contemptible. We have seen what "experience" has brought the American people while Dick Cheney ran the office of VP, and how George Bush conducted his presidency--he was a governor with "experience," too.
Sen. Obama and his campaign have correctly said that it is judgment that matters over experience.
After the revelations of the past week over Mrs. Palin and her family and her record as a mayor and governor, and now learning that McCain chose her above many, many other qualified people (women and men) after speaking with her only once, my conclusion is that they both have no judgment.
Experience is worthless without judgment.
Now let's look at Mrs. Palin's experience:
ON FOREIGN POLICY
Palin Hasn’t Given The War In Iraq Much Thought. Palin told the Alaska Business Monthly, “I’ve been so focused on state government, I haven’t really focused much on the war in Iraq. I heard on the news about the new deployments, and while I support our president, Condoleezza Rice and the administration, I want to know that we have an exit plan in place.” [Alaska Business Monthly, 3/1/07]
Palin Has Never Been To Iraq. In her only trip overseas, Palin visited Alaska National Guard troops stationed in Kuwait and Germany in July 2007. [AP, 7/25/07]
Palin Believes That The Iraq War Is A Task ‘From God.’ Speaking at the Wasilla Assembly of God church in June, Palin said that “our leaders, our national leaders, are sending [U.S. soldiers] out on a task that is from God.” [Huffington Post, 9/2/08]
Palin Believes The Iraq War Was Fought Over Oil. “We are a nation at war and in many [ways] the reasons for war are fights over energy sources,” Palin told BusinessWeek in an interview. [BusinessWeek, 8/29/08]
Palin Didn’t Have A Passport Until 2007. Palin first obtained a passport in July 2007 for her trip to Kuwait and Germany to visit Alaska National Guard troops. Her only other trip outside of the United States was to Canada. A Palin spokeswoman had previously said that Palin had also been to Ireland, although it was actually just a “refueling stop” on her Germany/Kuwait trip. [New York Times, 8/29/08; Politico, 9/2/08]
How's that for foreign policy "experience?" Would that be the most excellent person to put on the ticket for VP at this time when Americans are worried about the global war on terror? Does she even know who the leaders in Europe, Eastern Europe, Russia, the Middle East, Africa, South America, Central America are?
Palin Supported The Bridge To Nowhere. During her unveiling as McCain’s running mate, Palin claimed that she said, “Thanks, but no thanks” to federal funding for the Bridge to Nowhere. But in her 2006 campaign for governor, Palin repeatedly expressed support for the bridge project, saying Alaska should take advantage of earmarks “while our congressional delegation is in a strong position to assist.” [Anchorage Daily News, 10/22/06; Ketchikan Daily News, 8/9/06, 11/21/06]
Palin Obtained $27 Million In Earmarks As Mayor Of Wasilla. As mayor of Wasilla, AK, Palin “hired a private lobbyist to help the tiny town secure earmarks from [Sen. Ted] Stevens.” “The town obtained 14 earmarks, totaling $27 million between 2000-2003.” [Associated Press, 9/3/08]
Palin Supports Teaching Creationism In Public Schools. In a 2006 gubernatorial debate, Palin “said she thinks creationism should be taught alongside evolution in the state’s public classrooms.” [Anchorage Daily News, 10/27/06]
THIS ALONE SHOULD DISQUALIFY HER.
Palin Slashed Funding To Help Teenage Mothers. Earlier this year, Palin used a line-item veto “to slash funding for a state program benefiting teen mothers in need of a place to live.” Funding for Covenant House Alaska, which provides transitional housing for teen mothers, was cut by 20 percent — from $5 million to $3.9 million. [Washington Post, 9/3/08]
Palin Supports Abstinence-Only Policies. In 2006, the Eagle Forum Alaska asked Palin whether she would “support funding for abstinence-until-marriage education.” Palin replied, “Yes, the explicit sex-ed programs will not find my support.” [Politico, 9/1/08]
NO COMMENT. SEE THIS PAST WEEK'S NEWS.
More on Mrs. Palin tomorrow.