Sarah Palin speech open thread


What do you think?

Did she do well?

Do you think she won any votes or changed any minds?

8:37 MDT:  About special needs children:  “If you elect us, you’ll have a friend and advocate in the White House.”  Good move.

8:40 MDT:  Compares herself to Harry Truman?  Cheesy but effective.

8:42 MDT:  “The difference between a hockey mom and a pit bull?  Lipstick.”  She can deliver lines like this like Huckabee (a good thing.)

8:43 MDT:  About being mayor:  “Let me explain to [my opponents]  what the job involves…sort of like a community organizer execpt that you have actual responsibilities.”  A predictible invocation of the bitter/cling comments from last spring.

8:44 MDT:  Brings up her “outsider” cred, throws red media-hating meat.

8:46 MDT:  Ethic of public service–“with a servant’s heart,” good dogwhistle to the evangelicals.

8:47 MDT:  Reputation as a reformer:  Against the special interests, oil companies, and the good-old-boys.  “True reform is so hard to achieve.”  “We put the government in Alaska back on the side of the people.”  (Fired the Gov.’s personal chef?  What was she thinking???)

8:49 MDT:  How she uses vetoes and other executive perquisites.  Good use of specific examples of her leadership (however factually shaky!)  She’s building a good narrative about her being large & in charge.  $40 B natural gas pipeline “to lead America to energy independence!”  She makes good points here about dependence on “foreign oil.”  Paycheck issues–cost of gas and heating oil.  “We cannot leave ourselves at the mercy of foreign suppliers.”  Good laundry list of foreign places, suggesting that she knows what’s going on outside of the U.S.

8:53 MDT:  Re: energy policy:  “The fact that drilling won’t solve every problem is no excuse not to do anything at all.”  “We need American energy brought to you by American ingenuity and produced by American workers.” 

8: 55 MDT:  On Obama:  “This is a man who has authored two memoirs, but not a single law…”  “This is a man who can give an entire speech about our wars…and not use the word victory except when talking about his own campaign.”  Funny line about the Greek columns being hauled back to a studio lot.

8:56 MDT:  Obama is for big government, tax increases–says “raise — taxes” many, many times.  Good connection with her sister’s new service station–“How are they going to be better off if taxes go up?”  Talks about people in Michigan and Ohio, Pennsylvania and West Virginia, etc.

8:59 MDT:  “There are those who use change to promote their careers, and then there are those, like John McCain, who use their careers to promote change.”  Gets in a dig about the “self-designed presidential seal.”

9:00 MDT:  “A leader who isn’t looking for a fight, but sure isn’t afraid of one either.”  Harsh.  You have to admit, she gets the (in the bag, desperately eager) crowd on their feet.

9:02  MDT:  Harry Reid “can’t stand John McCain?”  “Harry Reid can’t stand UP to John McCain!” 

9:03 MDT:  “The American presidency is not supposed to be a journey of personal discovery…not just a community and it doesn’t need an organizer.”  “There is only one man in this election who has ever really fought for you…and that man is John McCain.”  The line of the night–and not a bad one.

9:04 MDT:  back to the 6 x 4 cell in Hanoi…did I miss something?  Was John McCain a prisoner of war?  (/snark)  Recounts anecdotes of McCain’s captivity:  the optimism in adversity and the toughness of John McCain. 

9:07 MDT:  “John McCain has inspired with his deeds.”  “Join our cause and help America elect a great man…”

Overall, a good speech and very well-delivered.  No surprises–the Republicans are running the 2004 campaign all over again:  Republicans will fight for you, Democrats aren’t tough enough.  She’s a much more appealing messenger of this old message than is Giuliani, Romney, or any of the old guard–I think she could be an effective advocate for McCain on the campaign trail.  The crowd is pretty thrilled–I know it’s a captive audience and they’re desperate to be thrilled, but I think she acquitted herself very well and kept them on their feet.

The only major absence was no cultural issues, none of that kind of red meat tossed out to the base.  Abortion?  Never came up?  “Protecting marriage?”  Nope.  Interesting.

McCain climbed up on stage:  he actually looks diminished by her.  He looks really frail.  (I don’t see TV a lot and ordinarily only hear him on the radio–has he looked this way all through the campaign?)

UPDATE, 9/4/08:  New polling by Rasmussen shows a slight dip in Obama’s lead today, plus indications that Palin and the Republicans are holding their own on the Palin narrative and on her experience:

Last night’s polling shows that, by a ten-to-one margin, voters believe reporters are trying to hurt Palin’s campaign rather than help. Republicans and unaffiliated voters strongly believe that a double standard is being applied to Palin because she is a woman. Democrats disagree. Perhaps most stunning is that, among unaffiliated voters, just 42% believe Obama has better experience than Palin to be President. Thirty-seven percent (37%) say Palin has the edge on experience. Again, most of the interviews for this survey were completed before Palin’s well-received speech last night.

.     .    .    .    .    .    .   

Today is the second straight day that the results have inched very slightly in McCain’s direction as the GOP convention gets underway and seeks to overcome Obama’s convention bounce.

.     .    .    .    .    .    .   

Fifty-two percent (52%) of Americans have a favorable opinion of Palin. A separate survey found that Obama is number one and Palin number two on the list of candidates people would like to meet.

Just one poll, so take it for what it’s worth, which ain’t much.  I was impressed with Rasmussen’s speed in getting this out this morning, so I thought I’d just pass it along.

0 thoughts on “Sarah Palin speech open thread

  1. Amy–good luck. I think the best argument is McCain=Bush’s 3rd term. The Repubican convention underscored that they have no new ideas except “drill baby drill,” and want to stick with the (disastrous) old ones in play under the current admin.

    But, the problem is that many people still like and trust McCain–he’s a name brand, whereas Obama is still a cipher to them. (Not saying this is true, just that that’s the perception.) So, I’d stay away from anything that could be interpreted as disrespectful of McCain/Palin.

    (Did you watch McCain’s speech last night? At the end, when the McCain and Palin families joined him onstage, they played “Barracuda!” No joke!)


  2. Thanks, Historiann; I think I’ll work in the “third term” bit for sure. As for being respectful, I am definitely not going to start trashing hockey moms as I make my way through the phone list tomorrow, though I STILL say hockey is a violent….

    Every female independent I have reached so far in Nevada is voting Obama. In contrast, here’s what some of the “undecided” men say:

    – Obama is a tax-and-spend Dem
    – We don’t have any money to pay for everything he promised
    – He has no private sector experience (does McCain?)
    – He lacks relevant leadership experience (gotta concede here)
    – It’s a scary world out there
    – Who does he think he is? (the uppity argument)
    – Presidents have very little influence over the economy
    – The economic concerns have been way overstated and it’ll revive on its own

    On this last point, I succeeded in getting one undecided to concede that Obama’s cutting-edge use of social technologies in building his campaign is a good sign, when compared to McCain’s computer illiteracy (he doesn’t use email)… I mean who is future-focused here?

    I also reminded him about Clinton’s record on the economy, which reminds me… do you think the Dems should shift their approach a bit? At the convention they did a lot of pitying (you poor poor victims without health insurance) and arguably not enough flexing their cred on economic issues (we are the brainy types who can balance budgets and promote smart industries, etc.)?

    I’d appreciate all input… Amy


  3. amy,

    A few raw reactions to your list from another undecided male. Some of this might be useful. Some of it might illustrate what you are up against.

    1. Yep, but Bush has been a cut-tax and spend Republican.
    2. Spot on. Unless Obama abandons his pledge not to raise taxes on the middle class.
    3-4. To put it differently – there is only one of the four major party candidates who has actually run something. Sarah Palin.
    5. True of course. Not that I get how that creates a distinction between the options.
    6. To borrow a frequent response from Shakesville. *HEAD* *DESK*
    7. Spot on. I do not want to hear about how many jobs Obama is going to create.
    8. Spot on. Thats how a business cycle works.

    FYI, the Iowa speech, post-partisan Obama had me wanting to run out and get a ‘Republicans for Obama’ sign. The convention speech, standard Democrat Obama disavowed me of that impulse.



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