Just Win, Baby - John McCain caused quite a stir when he selected Alaska Governor Sarah Palin as his running mate on the 2008 Republican Presidential ticket. Another maverick move by an outside the box thinker, right? Well, not so much. In fact, just another example of the Republican tactic of doing whatever it takes to win. Now, don't get me wrong - having a female on major party ticket for only the second time in history is a noteworthy event, but the circumstances of Palin's selection are dubious at best.
In selecting a female, John McCain engaged in an obvious ploy to court female voters disenfranchised or discouraged by Hillary Clinton's exit from the Democratic race. Plenty of people disagree with this view, and many would label my opinion as 'sexist.' I argue that the sexism comes from the selection itself. Selecting a running mate based on a set of criteria that not only includes gender, but places it at the top of the list - that's sexist. The ploy is even more transparent when placed against McCain's stated goal to staff his administration with the most qualified and experienced Americans, regardless of their party affiliation. Palin's experience and qualifications, as far as being second in command, are shaky at best. This selection seems to have been the product of some hybrid Help Wanted/Singles ad:
WM seeks MWF for partnership, possibly more. Experience a plus, but not required. Must love America, Big Oil and family values. Qualified candidates please reply to US RNC as soon as possible. Background information helpful, but a full check will be run upon acceptance of the position. Country First!