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Friday, August 29, 2008

The Governor Palin Selecton

I don't understand all the discussion about whether or not Governor Palin's selection as GOP VP candidate will draw women's votes, particularly those women who supported Senator Clinton, to McCain-Palin. Can that really be the analysis by Republican strategists? How completely silly.

There are so many reasons why this line of thinking is off the mark that it's almost exhausting. Where to begin? Here are the two easiest.

First, assume that a serious chunk of Senator Clinton's most dedicated female supporters are pro-choice. Pro-choice women do not vote for anti-choice Presidential candidates. McCain and Palin are anti-choice; or to use the their terms "pro-life". There is a possibility that the next President could appoint up to three new members to the United States Supreme Court. There is zero chance these women will vote for the GOP ticket. End of story.

Second, apparently the GOP completely misunderstood the Democratic Presidential primary. On issues of policy, and with respect to the choice between Senator Clinton and Senator Obama, the candidates essentially agreed on almost every point. So, some voters thought, 'I get the same policy from either one. I'd like to see a female President. I'll vote for the Sen. Clinton.' That just isn't the case with the GOP candidates McCain-Palin in comparison to Senators Obama and Biden.

So, who does that leave? Pro-life women who will only vote for the pro-life candidate if it is a woman? Who is that? If the voter is really motivated by being pro-life, that voter was always going to vote for Senator McCain. Thus, choosing Gov. Palin gilded the lily, but didn't bring in any new voters.

For these and many more reasons, the mere selection of a woman as his running mate will not cause women voters to move toward voting for Sen. McCain.