McCain & The Working Mom.

What drew my attention was not the first-term, 44-year-old Alaska governor who was standing at the podium proudly accepting the invitation to join a presidential ticket. My eyes were instead focused on a woman in the crowd.

 

Dressed in a navy blue T-shirt bearing an American flag, the woman had, just moments earlier, been politely listening to GOP nominee John McCain explain why he made his particular choice of a running mate. Before revealing the name of his VP, Sarah Palin, McCain talked about how his announcement would “shake up Washington.” It wasn’t until he mentioned that it was the week of the 88th anniversary of women’s suffrage when it dawned upon the woman in the flag T-shirt -- who’d likely been standing in the Dayton, Ohio crowd for hours -- that the vice presidential nominee was not a guy. The spectator’s mouth fell open. Her eyes widened. She looked at the man standing next to her as though she couldn’t believe what she’d just heard. It couldn’t be a woman. Could it?

 

A few minutes later, a mother of five – who gave birth to a baby with Down Syndrome in April, whose eldest son is being deployed to Iraq in September and who was celebrating her 20th wedding anniversary on this day – stepped in front of her first national audience. With a nod to Senator Hillary Clinton’s 18 million primary votes and the 18 million “cracks in the glass ceiling” created by her failed presidential bid, Palin said, “. . . [I]t turns out, the women of America aren’t finished yet and we can shatter that glass ceiling once and for all.”

 

It was stunning news to try to absorb as viewers watched Palin, her children and her husband on stage, particularly coming on the heels of the previous evening’s historic speech given by Democratic presidential nominee Barack Obama as he accepted his party’s nod on the 45th anniversary of Martin Luther King’s “I Have a Dream” speech.

crazymama2
08.31.08

I'm all for having a woman in the White House, don't get me wrong. But I agree that we need to have the *right* woman in the White House. NOT Ted Nugent in a skirt.

gsavage
08.31.08

Okay, I think this pick merited about 24 hours of attention and now it's time to go back to discussing real issues, how we are going to move forward, how we are going to fix the economy and restore our standing on the world stage. The Politics of Distraction has taken everyone's eye off the ball once again. Fortunately there is still time to move back to an intelligent debate on real topics. Enough already.

emiliadanzica
08.31.08

You are no doubt aware of Governor Palin's dismal record, from her staunch support for special interests and Big Oil to her terrible assault on wolves and other wildlife. She might as well be a heartless man. I am disgusted to read this article by a newsletter I used to respect. If she becomes our president I am moving.

zardog
08.31.08

None of you have the faintest idea who Sarah Palin is. She is the best Governor we had in Alaska, bar None. She kept all of her campaign promises. In just two years she has tackled major issues here in Alaska, she sold our million dollar state jet we did not need, she dismissed the gourmet chef in the Governors mansion, she drives to work by her self and she takes commercial flights just like the rest of us. The Alaska Gas line is now on track, thanks to her, she fought big oil on tax increases and won, and she pushed for an energy package,which allows Alaskans to winterize their homes, safe on energy and qualify for a partial refund on the improvements. To combat the high energy prices in Alaska,thanks to Sarah we all receive a $1,200 onetime energy rebate. She has done all that in a mere 2 years. And, yes, she had Trix who is the sweetest little thing and goes everywhere Mom goes. His dad is taking care of him when Sarah works. She is the most amazing women and the best thing that can happen to America.

ann1083
08.31.08

I am very concerned that Senator McCain chose Govenor Palin in a bid to get Hiliary Clinton supporters. I, too, am very concerned about a mother who would leave a 4 month old special needs child to seek such a high office. In addition to this, her lack of experience, her anti-abortion stance, her anti-gay marriage opinions, and lack of concern for the environment concern me deeply. Women must look beyond the fact that we want to see a woman in the presidency or vice-presidency--we want the right woman--not just a woman!

gsavage
08.30.08

Well if you want to say Palin has more experience than Obama, then you must also admit that she has more executive experience than McCain - who has always been in the legislature and never held a command while in the army.

jeanmansen
08.30.08

I think it is an insult to women to assume that we will vote for McCain because he's picked a woman for the veep spot. Her lack of adequate resume and her politics should stop all of us cold. McCain appears unpredictable, desperate, and with an anti-choice, pro-NRA, environmentally dangerous, neo-con running mate with no international or other qualifications one heartbeat away from the presidency, Barak Obama is offering the type of change we need, not threatening to take away the progress we've worked so hard to achieve over the last 50 years.

scarlett
08.30.08

This selection is an insult to women everywhere, the worst kind of pandering. Can any of us imagine accepting this appointment, knowing how close we would be to the presidency of a man who's 72 and has had several bouts with cancer, and knowing how flimsy our own resume is??
What record Palin has is totally at odds with the interests of women, especially mothers. She hopeless, even dangerous on the environment, rabidly pro gun,and anti choice. Others have already pointed out her bypassing the family leave act and the message that sends. McCain himself is far from reliable. Though he may have made a reputation as a maverick, that's been destroyed forever as he's reneged on every position that might have been called independent. Palin is a cynical choice aimed at "getting" the evangelical women who have been dubious about him and, improbably, some women who had high hopes for Hillary. Women are smarter than that.

itssarawithnoh
08.30.08

No one is calling Obama the Democratic nominee with 2 children. Why isn't Palin being introduced and lauded for the quality of her work as opposed to the number of children she has. It's incredibly sexist and you would never hear a young man introduced to the world as a father before you hear about his credentials.

mommy_esq
08.30.08

The reality is that we VOTE for a person if we like them. Why we "like" a candidate is a open question. Yes, for some, it is the issues. But for many others it's random things that don't have anything to do with the issues or the candidates abilities, such as the fact that Sarah Palin is a woman and mother.