I don’t really intend to write a whole lot more about Sarah Palin, since I think the pick, while possibly shrewd, is such a craven and obvious political ploy, it doesn’t merit too much ink. The fact of the matter is that the structural nature of the Republican Party, the conservative coalition, and John McCain’s fealty to same remain unchanged. In other words, this is another fresh coat of paint on a house that has fallen into utter, shocking, disrepair.
But watching the coverage of it evolve, I wouldn’t be surprised if we saw massive MSM backlash against the pick. I was in the greenroom over at MSNBC in Denver the morning it was announced and the dominant sentiment among the folks there was bafflement and palpable anger: Like, how dare he pick someone we don’t know about! In this respect, Sarah Palin is the opposite of Joe Biden. The Biden pick made all the members of the politico-media establishment nod their heads. “Ah yes. He’s one of us.” Sarah Palin is not. Now that still might not matter for voters (in fact it might be a plus). People may not care whether or not this particular individual is the right person to be a heartbeat away from the presidency. They may allow her unquestionably compelling personal story and obvious personal political talents to cloud out her very, very conservative, hard-right political beliefs. But remember McCain has called the press “his base,” and its true: no one buys into the brand of McCain more than those who cover him in the DC establishment. But this pick, while pleasing one base (the right) has alienated his other base: the DC media establishment. It will be interesting to see this plays out.