As a feminist, I’m pleased that Senator McCain has picked Sarah Palin for his choice as Vice president.

Actually, I’ve written about her before HERE, about when she decided to fly home to have her baby in Alaska when she started having signs of going into labor in Texas.

The pundits so far seem to have gotten a lot of things wrong. A quick scan of the headlines say she is an ex beauty queen (uh, fellahs, check out Miss Congeniality. It’s a scholarship program). Other pundits say she has no experience in foreign affairs (as opposed to a two week tour de force by Obama?) and lacks experience (ditto. She has been governor about as long as Obama has been a Senator).

But there are things that the pundits didn’t notice yet.

One: unlike many political women, she is not a harridan. And her husband is both a fisherman and a well known sportsman.

Yes, maybe being married to the four time winner of the Iron Dog race may not mean much to argula eating snobs, but it might impress the ESPN voters.

Second, Palin is a member of the NRA. Again, this doesn’t sit well in Chicago or with the media, but to those of us who lived in rural towns where we couldn’t jog for fear of being attacked by bears, and where the first day of deer season is a school holiday, owning a rifle is part of growing up. And that includes women. I don’t hunt, but one winter my petit nurse, mother of five, went out and got her elk. Yum. Elk Kielbasa.

Three: Hillary voters are watching. Again, as I had pointed out, if you go by popular vote, Hillary either won or lost by a fraction of a percentage point, but the press was so pro Obama that few people are aware of that fact. The press coverage against Hillary still smarts. If the press uses similar sexism against Palin, expect some of Hillary’s women to notice Obama playing the anti woman card again.

Four: The blue collar vote is more likely to go for McCain. Palin’s husband is a fisherman, but she often helps the family’s business during the busy season. Yes, Biden might be the son of “coal miners” (actually, he grew up in Scranton, not in a coal town, but never mind. The press wouldn’t know the difference), but one won’t see photos of him getting his hands dirty.

Five: The prolife angle. Obama’s choice of an abortion supporting Senator, along with Pelosi telling the Catholic bishops they are wrong is another story “under the fold”. Quite a few Catholic bishops have corrected her publicly, and the one third of Catholics who actually go to church might notice.

Obama might have found Jesus, and Biden will throw his rosary beads down the throat of anyone who questions his religion, but their actions suggest Jesus is merely a prop for votes.

Which is more important, bragging about your religion, or living it? The press was puzzled when McCain praises a Christian guard’s help as an example of what is a Christian, not noticing McCain refrains from bragging of his own actions as a POW risking a beating to hold church services. Similarly, Palin doesn’t have to brag she is prolife. The press hasn’t noticed that her youngest son has Down’s syndrome, but word will get around.

Six: The conservative base of the Republican party might actually get out and vote. Many of them hate McCain almost as much as Obama because he has been too cooperative with Democrats on immigration and other issues. The choice of Palin might change their mind.

So despite the pundits, this is a good choice. It’s just that the pundits of the left and right are so busy playing politics that they haven’t noticed.


Nancy Reyes is a retired physician living in the rural Philippines. Her website is Finest Kind Clinic and Fishmarket.

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