Friday, August 29, 2008

Sarah Palin

By now, it's more-or-less official. Elaborating a bit on my previous posts, I've been thinking about the last few vice presidents. Most of them were acknowledged political heavyweights going in: Cheney, Gore, the senior Bush, Mondale, Humphrey, Johnson. That leaves out two names: Agnew and Quayle.

The sales pitch for those last two was that they were young men with great potential that had not yet played out on the national scene. I think criticism of Quayle was overdone, but he didn't handle himself very well, in reaction to it.

By mentioning Palin in the same context as Agnew, I don't for one minute intend to imply anything scandalous about her. As far as I know, she is clean in regard to the scandals involving Alaska Republicans. As a matter of fact, I believe her election as governor was based on her being a clean alternative to other Republicans in her state.

Changing the subject a bit, it has become commonplace for male gubernatorial candidates to choose female running mates. In my native state, Minnesota, all lieutenant governors have been female, going back to the 1980s. My current home state, Pennsylvania, has been a bit behind in that regard, but the current lieutenant governor is a woman.

In that sense, it's surprising that other presidential nominees have not followed the lead of Walter Mondale who, in 1984, was the only previous major-party nominee to choose a woman for VP.

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