Oh How They Loved Sarah Palin

Right Wing Watch cites a long list of quotes from social conservatives praising John McCain’s pick of Sarah Palin as his vice president in 2008 to high heaven. They were sure she was going to turn the race around for him. It’s quite funny to read in retrospect:

James Dobson, Focus on the Family: “A lot of people were praying, and I believe Sarah Palin is God’s answer.”

Tony Perkins, Family Research Council: “Senator McCain made an outstanding pick.”

Connie Mackey, FRCAction: “I am elated with Senator McCain’s choice.”

Mat Staver, Liberty Counsel: “Absolutely brilliant choice.”

Richard Land: “Governor Palin will delight the Republican base.”

Rick Scarborough, Vision America, “I’m elated. I think it’s a superb choice.”

Ralph Reed: “They’re beyond ecstatic. This is a home run.”

Gary Bauer, American Values: “[A] grand slam home run.”

Phyllis Schlafly, Eagle Forum: “She is the best possible choice.”

Janet Folger, Faith2Action: “[T]he selection of Sarah Palin is more than ‘Brilliant!’ ‘Electrifying!’ and ‘Energizing!’ The selection of Sarah Palin will lead to words like: ‘Rejuvenating!’ ‘Victory!’ and ‘Landslide!’”

Wendy Wright, Concerned Women for America: “Governor Palin will change the dynamics of the entire presidential race.”

Janice Shaw Crouse, CWA’s Beverly LaHaye Institute: “She is an outstanding woman who will be an excellent role model for the nation’s young people.”

David Barton, Wallbuilders: “The talk won’t be about, ‘look at Sarah Palin’ as much as ‘look at what McCain’s choice of Palin says about McCain’s core beliefs.”

Jonathan Falwell: “John McCain made it very clear that his administration was going to be a pro-life administration, and he proved that’s his belief and his passion today with the choice of Sarah Palin.”

Jerry Falwell, Jr.: “I think it’s a brilliant choice.”

Charmaine Yoest, Americans United for Life: “And then when [Palin] was announced — it was like you couldn’t breathe. [We] were grabbing each other and jumping up and down.”

Gary Marx, Judicial Confirmation Network: “I can tell you that this pick tells millions in the base of the party that they can trust McCain. More specifically that they can trust him with Supreme Court picks and other key appointments’”

David Keene, American Conservative Union: “The selection of Governor Palin is great news for conservatives, for the party and for the country. I predict any conservatives who have been lukewarm thus far in their support of the McCain candidacy will work their hearts out between now and November for the McCain-Palin ticket.”

How’d that work out for ya?

36 comments on this post.
  1. feralboy12:

    “The talk won’t be about, ‘look at Sarah Palin’ as much as ‘look at what McCain’s choice of Palin says about McCain’s core beliefs.”

    Pretty much what I was thinking as I voted for Obama.

  2. Aquaria:

    It’s like a Rogue’s Gallery of stupid.

  3. Aquaria:

    It’s funny how right these two were, unintentionally:

    Wendy Wright, Concerned Women for America: “Governor Palin will change the dynamics of the entire presidential race.”

    Yes it did change it, Wendy. It changed the dynamics to people running harder away from the Republicans.

    David Barton, Wallbuilders: “The talk won’t be about, ‘look at Sarah Palin’ as much as ‘look at what McCain’s choice of Palin says about McCain’s core beliefs.”

    Yes, it did say something about his core beliefs, namely that they were empty, shallow and stupid.

  4. carlsonjok:

    Actually, I think James Dobson was right.

  5. Doc Bill:

    Well, ACTUALLY, my first introduction to Sarah Palin was her acceptance speech at the convention. She came out there all fresh and bright and confident and proceeded to POTENTIALLY change the landscape of that campaign. She looked and sounded tough and capable.

    Of course, shortly thereafter she had to answer questions with her own tiny, stunted brain and the jig was up. I remember watching Couric’s interview (Katy, you’re such a sweetheart!) and Palin just came off as a complete moron.

    Seriously, I thought, McCain couldn’t have done something that stupid and I kept waiting for the other shoe to drop, for the genius statesman Palin to emerge, but, of course the rest is history.

    McCain pandered away the last remaining shred of his integrity with that VP decision.

  6. richardelguru:

    Awww! Aquaria you beat me to it!
    I was about to write that among all those wildly daft comments there was one voice that told the truth.
    Wendy Wright got it spot on, she really did change those dynamics, and I for one am glad of it.

  7. Bronze Dog:

    My mother liked McCain before he started moved onto the presidential run. He started losing favor with her when he started pandering to the increasingly crazy Republican base. Palin, however, was the last straw. Picking her showed an astounding lack of judgement and detachment from reality. Palin is an unprincipled idiot with a pretty face, and if something happened to McCain, that idiot would have been in charge.

    That’s why my mom voted for Obama in 2008.

  8. Rieux:

    Sure, many of these look stupid—but c’mon, Richard Land’s? “Governor Palin will delight the Republican base”? Can anyone seriously claim she didn’t?

  9. Abby Normal:

    Given the quality of people currently vying for the Republican nomination, Phyllis Schlafly may have been correct as well.

  10. Dennis N:

    It’s like a Rogue’s Gallery of stupid.

    With David Barton as the Joker, Bryan Fischer as Two-Face, James Dobson as Clayface, Tony Perkins as the Scarecrow, and Phyllis Schlafly as Poison Ivy.

  11. MikeMa:

    Not only did Palin energize and delight the GOP base, she still does to a great extent. They still send her money and until a few weeks ago, they still were begging her to run in 2012.

    The problem is not really with Palin at all as she is nothing more or less than she ever was, a greedy, narcissistic moron. The problem is with the GOP base that swooned over those qualities.

  12. reverendrodney:

    Phyllis Schlafly, Eagle Forum: “She is the best possible choice.”

    That proved to be true. It guaranteed McCain not winning. Whew!

  13. davidct:

    I know for sure that it was this choice that cost him my vote. No surprise at who supported Palin. Actually the choice made it clear that McCain’s core beliefs change with the weather.

  14. tommykey:

    I remember watching Couric’s interview (Katy, you’re such a sweetheart!) and Palin just came off as a complete moron.

    And to think to this day there are still some die hard Palin fans who claim that Couric’s interview is an example of one of those liberally biased “gotcha” interviews.

  15. holytape:

    Well, how could you not love Sarah Palin? Her work on 30rock is impeccable…… Oh wait.

    You forgot Obama’s quote*, “I couldn’t have picked a better running mate for old Mr. Mcgrouchy myself.”

    *Not intended to be a factual statement.

    FSM

  16. Ben P:

    I’m going to take a completely different tack here.

    I understand McCain’s pick of Palin, although I do think he didn’t vet her sufficiently and ultimately she was not a good choice.

    Go back and look at the polling through the summer of 2008. Coming out of the democratic convention Obama had a commanding lead. Most pundits were saying Obama had a lock on the election.

    For better or worse, McCain needed a game changer. If he’d picked any other “old white guy,” even someone with purported crossover appeal like Lieberman, they would have run a respectable campaign, fought the good fight, and lost by 6-8% points.

    I think rightfully, McCain’s advisors saw the only path to win was to pick a vice presidential candidate that completely shook up the election. Picking a female conservative firebrand was just the *something* they were looking for at the time. Now they ended up being totally wrong about Sarah Palin, but I see their motivation.

  17. Aquaria:

    Well, ACTUALLY, my first introduction to Sarah Palin was her acceptance speech at the convention. She came out there all fresh and bright and confident and proceeded to POTENTIALLY change the landscape of that campaign. She looked and sounded tough and capable.

    Really? Because I thought she sounded phony, like someone who had been coached within an inch of her life, and anyone who required that much guidance for that simple-minded of a speech had to be an idiot.

    It really was my first thought when I saw her speech.

  18. Aquaria:

    I think rightfully, McCain’s advisors saw the only path to win was to pick a vice presidential candidate that completely shook up the election. Picking a female conservative firebrand was just the *something* they were looking for at the time. Now they ended up being totally wrong about Sarah Palin, but I see their motivation.

    If you need a good female conservative, you pick Kay Bailey Hutchinson. She’s the only female conservative who I think could have helped him, because she actually has a brain. The anti-abortion types would have howled, but where else were they going to go? To the Democrats? Please. Kay Bailey Hutchinson would have made it at least a little closer because she’s somewhat reasonable (for a Republican) on the abortion issue! She would have made McCain far more appealing to swing voters.

  19. Ben P:

    She would have made McCain far more appealing to swing voters.

    Swing voters are a myth.

    Well that’s hyperbolic, I actually agree that Hutchinson might have been a better candidate, but seriously?

    Obama’s election was a historical wave in more ways than one. Do you really think there was a substantial group of non-republican leaning individuals who would have decided not to vote for Obama because McCain picked Hutchinson? McCain’s only real chance was to play the same game as Obama and turn out the base.

  20. noastronomer:

    “It’s quite funny to read in retrospect”

    It was quite funny at the time too! The gift that keeps on giving.

    Mike.

  21. Brownian:

    And to think to this day there are still some die hard Palin fans who claim that Couric’s interview is an example of one of those liberally biased “gotcha” interviews.

    It was! The nerve, asking a Republican what she reads…

    The polite questions are “Who do you think should pull their socks up and stop whining?” and “In your opinion, who’s responsible for making this country the mess it is?” If you must focus on the printed word, ask things like, “Other than the bible, what books should godless liberal egghead professors be forced to read (at gunpoint if necessary)?” and “You’re training a puppy to attack ethnics who set foot on your property: what magazines or newspapers do you spread on the floor?”

  22. JayEss:

    Those quotes reminded me of quotes of movie reviews. And just like most movies, the candidate didn’t measure up to the critics’ praise.

  23. yoav:

    Janet Folger, Faith2Action: “[T]he selection of Sarah Palin is more than ‘Brilliant!’ ‘Electrifying!’ and ‘Energizing!’ The selection of Sarah Palin will lead to words like: ‘Rejuvenating!’ ‘Victory!’ and ‘Landslide!’”

    It sure did. Obama was probably going to win anyway but Palin sure helped by scaring the crap out of the, nearly extinct, sane republicans.

  24. Larry:

    Sarah Palin is God’s answer.

    What was the question again?

  25. d cwilson:

    Really? Because I thought she sounded phony, like someone who had been coached within an inch of her life, and anyone who required that much guidance for that simple-minded of a speech had to be an idiot.

    In fairness, it was the result of that intensive coaching that made her performance at the RNC as good as it was. Shortly after, people kept talking about the “Palin bounce” that McCain received after her speech and he did get a brief surge in the polls after the convention.

    But the convention speech turned out to be the last time she ever listened to her media handlers about anything. From then on, she preferred to “go rogue”. Her natural narcissistic tendencies came through and it turned sane voters off. I doubt McCain would have won had she continued to let herself be coached, but her constant refusal to listen to anyone’s advice is the primary reason why she is widely considered a joke by all by her most fanatical worshipers.

  26. Scott Simmons:

    Ben P:

    Obama’s election was a historical wave in more ways than one. Do you really think there was a substantial group of non-republican leaning individuals who would have decided not to vote for Obama because McCain picked Hutchinson[sic]? McCain’s only real chance was to play the same game as Obama and turn out the base.

    Dunno if it would have made a difference–but I can tell you for certain that I would have voted for him under that hypothetical. Now, my vote wouldn’t have made a difference, because McCain won my state anyway–if the GOP nominated Bozo the Clown for president, Bozo would win my state*–but I don’t think I’m that unique.

    *Which state? I’ll give you a hint–Kay Bailey Hutchison represents me in the U.S. Senate. Well, not me personally, but you get the picture.

  27. Pinky:

    “A lot of people were praying, and I believe Sarah Palin is God’s answer.”

    What? I thought ‘42‘ was the answer.

  28. dingojack:

    James Dobson, Focus on the Family: “A lot of people were praying, and I believe Sarah Palin is God’s answer.” *

    Damn, I wasn’t listening. What was the question again?
    Guess I’ll have to build a really, really big computer to find out.
    And a really big computer needs a big, round name.
    Nound… Plound… Grrround. Ground!
    That’s it – Ground. Hope it’ll be friends with me…
    Dingo
    —–
    * As was said many years ago. If that’s The Cure I’ll take the disease!

  29. Dr X:

    Also worth remembering, Rich Lowry’s reaction to Palin’s debate performance:

    I’m sure I’m not the only male in America who, when Palin dropped her first wink, sat up a little straighter on the couch and said, ‘Hey, I think she just winked at me.’ And her smile. By the end, when she clearly knew she was doing well, it was so sparkling it was almost mesmerizing. It sent little starbursts through the screen and ricocheting around the living rooms of America. This is a quality that can’t be learned; it’s either something you have or you don’t, and man, she’s got it.

  30. Aquaria:

    Obama’s election was a historical wave in more ways than one.

    Obama rode a time-honored wave of “anything but the party that’s been in the White House”. Nothing unusual about that at all. A D was probably going to win that year. That’s the way election years work out sometimes.

    Do you really think there was a substantial group of non-republican leaning individuals who would have decided not to vote for Obama because McCain picked Hutchinson? McCain’s only real chance was to play the same game as Obama and turn out the base.

    I think that there are enough racists in states like Pennsylvania, Ohio, Indiana, Virginia, North Carolina, Florida and New Mexico that the election could have swung the other way if a candidate like KBH had been on the ticket.

    Choosing her as a running mate might have sent the signal out to the real base of the Republican Party–the wealthy–to crank out the dough to support the party. The wealthy in the Republican party love her, and she would have opened a lot of wallets that were hesitant in a D year.

    A whole lot of dirty tricks could have been bought with that money, and they wanted to give it–if they saw what they wanted to see from McCain. Sarah Palin wasn’t what they wanted to see. KBH would have been.

  31. Aquaria:

    Swing voters are a myth.

    They’re not a myth. They’re the mushy middle of moderates who try to hold 20 contradictory ideas in their head at once (I’m not a racist, but…I don’t hate the faggots, but…I feel sorry for the poor, but…), and whichever one has ascendancy when they walk into the voting booth is the one that has them ticking a box.

    Look, one thing I learned from working campaigns long enough is that, in any election, each party can count on about 30% of the electorate voting for them, no matter what. I don’t care how bad of a scandal someone’s been in, if he’s in jail, if he’s dead–he can usually get 30% of the vote, just for having a certain letter by his name. With two parties, that means 60% of the election is decided going in, and there’s very little you can do to change that.

    That leaves 40% to be haggled over.

    Where you win elections is appealing to the 40% who like to think of themselves as independent or “moderate”. Most of them are people who like to flatter themselves about how much fairer they are than other people, so they vote for a different party in each election, split tickets and always put themselves in the middle–no matter how far left or right a national zeitgeist has moved. The rest of this 40% are followers. They follow the crowds, or what their alpha is voting for. Seriously. There really are people who vote because that’s what their boss is doing, or who their spouse tells them to.

    You’d be amazed how many followers and fairness-uber-alles types there are in America.

  32. Michael Heath:

    Aquaria asserts:

    The wealthy in the Republican party love her . . .

    WTF? The wealthy demonstrate who they love by whose campaigns they fund. Ms. Palin was unable to even start a viable campaign fund unlike someone like George W. Bush who was fairly close to a sure thing for the GOP nomination in 1998 based on this campaign chest. Ms. Palin was good at getting populists to give her $25, but like Rep. Bachman, is not capable of attracting real money.

    There is of course a couple of exceptions to wealthy Republican contributors who have somewhat divergent objectives, e.g., the Koch brothers, Scaife, and the Calvinists in SW Michigan; however they also weren’t showering their love on Sarah Palin. This is partly why I argued she wouldn’t run for president but instead build-up a voting block of the base in an attempt to force the hand of the nominee who had the cash but not the loyalty of the voting base, e.g., Mitt Romney. I was wrong, but only because Ms. Palin was even dumber than I imagined, where it’s now apparent she believed God would provide a unique path to a GOP presidential nomination – which is incredibly idiotic and delusional on her part.

  33. harold:

    Michael Heath

    WTF? The wealthy demonstrate who they love by whose campaigns they fund. Ms. Palin was unable to even start a viable campaign fund unlike someone like George W. Bush who was fairly close to a sure thing for the GOP nomination in 1998 based on this campaign chest. Ms. Palin was good at getting populists to give her $25, but like Rep. Bachman, is not capable of attracting real money.

    The comment you are responding to asserted that the wealthy love Kay Bailey Hutchison, not that they love Sarah Palin.

  34. Michael Heath:

    You’re correct Harold. Thanks for pointing that out. I retract my criticism of Aquaria’s point in regards to it applying to Sarah Palin. I have no idea where the rich stand when it comes to Sen. Hutchinson.

  35. Scott Simmons:

    I don’t know of any polls across the ‘wealthy’ demographic, Michael; but Sen. Hutchison is well-known for being remarkably business-friendly, even for a Republican. She pays just enough attention to conservative social issues to keep getting on the GOP ticket, but her clear focus is on helping big corporations maximize their profits.

  36. [links] Link salad is with the high command | jlake.com:

    [...] Oh How They Loved Sarah Palin — A little restrospecitve on the Right Wing commentariat’s love feast for the First Grifter. [...]

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