John McCain has chosen Alaska Governer Sarah Palin as his running mate. In the process he has crashed the gov.state.ak.us website and vaulted Mrs. Palin (and related queries) into all 20 top spots on Google Trends.
She is a smart pick by most measures. She appeals to the conservative base (NRA-member, pro-life.) Most importantly (in 2008) she is in favor of expanded energy exploration in Alaska. In fact, I could listen to her talk about “drilling in our backyard” and “tapping our reserves” all day long. [I couldn't resist]
Ed Rollins, who served as political director for President Reagan had this to say:
[Palin] is a young, articulate, smart, tough, pro-life woman who is the governor of our northernmost state. She is conservative and a mother of 5, including a son in the Army who is set to be deployed to Iraq on September 11.
She is blunt, outspoken and charming. And don’t assume she can’t stand toe-to-toe with Joe Biden. She is a great debater. And she was runner-up for the Miss Alaska title, won Miss Congeniality in that contest, and plays the flute.
Palin is strongly opposed to abortion and supports capital punishment. While running for Governor of Alaska, Palin supported the teaching of creationism alongside evolution in schools; however, she noted she would not use “religion as a litmus test, or anybody’s personal opinion on evolution or creationism” as criteria for selection to the school board.
She opposes same-sex marriage, but she has stated that she has gay friends and is receptive to gay and lesbian concerns about discrimination. While the previous administration did not implement same-sex benefits, Palin complied with an Alaskan state Supreme Court order and signed them into law. Palin disagreed with the Supreme Court ruling and supported a democratic advisory vote from the public on whether there should be a constitutional amendment on the matter. Alaska was one of the first U.S. states to pass a constitutional ban on gay marriage, in 1998, along with Hawaii. Palin has stated that she supported the 1998 constitutional amendment.
Palin’s first veto was used to block legislation that would have barred the state from granting benefits to the partners of gay state employees. In effect, her veto granted State of Alaska benefits to same-sex couples. The veto occurred after Palin consulted with Alaska’s attorney general on the constitutionality of the legislation.Details of Palin’s personal life have contributed to her political image. She hunts, eats moose hamburger, ice fishes, rides snowmobiles, and owns a float plane. Palin holds a lifetime membership with the National Rifle Association. She admits that she used marijuana when it was legal in Alaska, but says that she did not like it. In December 2007, Palin posed for a photo spread in the fashion magazine Vogue.
Or as Rush Limbaugh put it:
Guns. Babies. Jesus and a Babe.
The complete package. Sounds like a classy dame to me.