I hate beating a dead horse here, but the more I think about the McCain campaign, the more I think that it’s probably one of the best political machines to hit the beltway in a long time. This Palin pick was pure genius, and the teases from the McCain pick were perfect in making sure everyone was paying attention to his nominee.
McCain floated several trial balloons to see what kind of reaction he would get. He floated Meg Whitman, to see if people would be OK with a powerful woman. He floated Tom Ridge, to see if a pro-choice candidate would work. He floated Lieberman, to see the reaction to a hawkish liberla. I think he did this with Palin in mind. Knowing that the base would go bonkers if a pro-choice, liberal, inexperienced VP was named, he purposefully made people think Rudy, Whitman, Ridge or Lieberman were in the finals. But in getting these names out there, people were paying attention. More than that, they cared.
“I’m not voting for Liberman!” “I’m not voting for a pro-choice guy!” “I’m not voting for a philanderer!” The base was angry, thinking McCain was going to soil their Wheaties again. But he didn’t. In fact, he picked someone the polar opposite– a pro-life, conservative, woman with executive experience. Not only did everyone breathe a sigh of relief, they were overjoyed— “McCain listened to us!” say the Evangelicals. And it’s true. He did. And he teased the heck out of you to make sure you really enjoyed this great present he had in store for you.
Congrats to McCain and Palin. If we see more campaign machinations like this, November should be an easy ride.
Prediction: 8-10 point bump for McCain, pre-convention.