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Gerald McEntee originally posted on The Huffington Post: Questioning Sarah Palin

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Omaha Steve Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Oct-04-08 09:49 PM
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Gerald McEntee originally posted on The Huffington Post: Questioning Sarah Palin /

October 1st, 2008

This entry by AFSCME President Gerald McEntee was originally posted on The Huffington Post.

Traditionally, in America, political candidates dont hide from the press. Yet, until last week, thats exactly what the Republican candidate for Vice President had been doing. Unlike Joe Biden, who has met with the press more than 40 times since joining the Democratic ticket, Sarah Palin had never held a press conference or sat down for a one-on-one interview. She has now emerged from the political cone-of-silence that the lobbyists who run the McCain campaign placed her in. Not surprisingly, her conversations with Charlie Gibson, Sean Hannity and Katie Couric have generated enormous interest and comment.

Some on the right, however, wish she had been kept under wraps. Conservative columnists and pundits are competing to see who can say the pithiest disparaging thing about the fast-fading star from Alaska. They have been stunned not only by what shes said in the interviews, but also by the overarching sense that she is not a deep thinker on issues of policy, she lacks curiosity and she turns each question she cant answer into an opportunity to portray herself as a victim of East Coast elitists who reject the candidacy of someone who represents Joe Six-pack.

At the same time, the brilliant writer/actress/comedian Tina Fey has dominated the cable news programs and entertainment television programs with her masterful impersonation of Palin, most recently satirizing the candidates nearly incoherent interview with Katie Couric. What makes the Tina Fey skits so funny beside the wonderful contribution made by her fellow Saturday Night Live castmate Amy Poehler is that Fey nails her impersonation with a splendid but subtle comedic touch, and she salts her satire with verbatim Palin quotes.

Like many, Im appalled that so much of what Palin says makes no sense. However, by focusing on the comedy, we may be missing a deeper truth about Palin. She is a remarkably successful politician, and she clearly knows how to communicate. Shes a skilled and smart debater whos won every debate shes had to participate in, including successful televised debates with prior Alaska governors who she went on to defeat. When prepared, she is able to hone her language to take advantage of opportunities to define herself as a candidate who represents working people, who opposes the status quo.

This was on perfect display earlier this week when Palin spoke by phone with conservative talk-radio host Hugh Hewitt. When asked about working people struggling during hard times, Palins response was as powerful as anything Ive heard recently from any politician:

Theres been a lot of times that Todd and I have had to figure out how we were going to pay for health insurance. Weve gone through periods of our life here with paying out of pocket for health coverage until Todd and I both landed a couple of good union jobs. Early on in our marriage, we didnt have health insurance, and we had to either make the choice of paying out of pocket for catastrophic coverage or just crossing our fingers, hoping that nobody would get hurt, nobody would get sick. So I know what Americans are going through there.

FULL story at link.

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dchill Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Oct-04-08 10:00 PM
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1. And the money quote:
If the policies promoted in the Republican Party platform are ever enacted into law, every couple will have to white knuckle their way through their early years with no health insurance and lots of tough choices. Plus there wont be many union jobs for them to land.

"So I know what Americans are going through there." - Maybe so, but she doesn't care to remedy it.

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