The Other McCain

"One should either write ruthlessly what one believes to be the truth, or else shut up." — Arthur Koestler

‘By Any Means Necessary’

Posted on | November 18, 2010 | 19 Comments

“Willow Palin is a 16 year old girl who, like all 16 year olds is going to make mistakes and say things she shouldn’t have. . . . Apparently, it’s only a ‘homophobic slur’ when it comes from the daughter of a conservative female leader. Make no mistake; this is all about destroying Sarah Palin by any means necessary.”
Tammy Bruce, GOProud

Having begun to address the matter of Andrew Sullivan, let me turn to the important question of motive.

Why did Sully become so obsessed with destroying Sarah Palin that, within four days of her announcement as John McCain’s 2008 running mate, he posted nine times in regard to the Trig Truther rumors? Occam’s Razor directs us to the simplest answer: Pure politics.

What you see here is the chart of the Real Clear Politics poll average for the 2008 presidential campaign, showing that by Sept. 8, the McCain-Palin ticket was leading by 2.9 points — with the RCP average for the Republican ticket (48.3) on that date being the highest poll showing of McCain vs. Obama at any point during the entire campaign, even before either candidate had won his party’s nomination.

When Sarah Palin’s name was announced as the GOP vice-presidential candidate on Sept. 29, Andrew Sullivan saw what everyone saw: Here was a potential game-changer.

John McCain was the worst Republican presidential nominee since Gerald Ford. Old, short, bald and grumpy are not high on the list of characteristics any consultant would cherish a presidential candidate.

Sure, he had that Vietnam POW thing going for him, but (a) that was more than three decades ago, (b) the “Republican war-hero” factor hadn’t helped Bob Dole in ’96 or Bush Sr. in ’92, (c) Bush Jr. had mopped the floor with McCain in 2000, and (d) hey, did I mention old, short, bald and grumpy?

With one decision, however, McCain changed the calculus of the campaign. Everybody understood the dynamic: In defeating Hillary Clinton, Team Obama had alienated many independent women voters — and not a small number of loyal Democrats who continued to oppose Obama under the PUMA (“Party Unity, My Ass”) banner.

One of those PUMAs was my lesbian friend Cynthia Yockey. Her last hope as a feminist Democrat was that Obama would pick Hillary as his running mate. Instead, the nod went to Joe Biden and when McCain picked Palin — well, Sarah had Cynthia at “hello.”

And, mirable dictu, the same was true of the Republican Party’s conservative base, which had hitherto been less than enthusiastic. As I reported, Sarah Palin instantly became the “Sweetheart of the Heartland“:

LEBANON, Ohio — Janet Stefanopoulos drove 30 miles from Cincinnati to attend yesterday’s presidential campaign rally here, but it wasn’t the man at the top of the ticket that brought her out on a rainy Tuesday morning.
“I want to see Sarah Palin,” said Stefanopoulos, a retired nurse and staunch Republican who had favored Fred Thompson in the primaries. “I was a lukewarm McCain [supporter] until he picked her. I mean, I would have voted for him, but now I’m fired up. . . . She is what I would like my children to be.” . . .

Oh, yes, I remember the cheering crowd of thousands who turned out on that rainy Tuesday morning in Ohio:



Sarah Palin was a role model who inspired the dreams of millions and, by the week after the Republican convention, she had boosted the GOP ticket to a 10-point advantage among like voters in a Gallup poll.

Sarah Palin’s potential to change the dynamic of the 2008 campaign was, as I say, obvious from the moment her name was announced.  And so, for purely political reasons, Andrew Sullivan set out to destroy her.

By Any Means Necessary.”

UPDATE: It’s those “bitter clingers,” you see, who are shooting up their TV sets in Wisconsin. But Jimmie Bise makes an important point here:

I mean, he could have gotten just as enraged had be seen any spoiled politician’s daughter who had wrangled her way into a position that she would never have earned save for her last name.

Hmmmmm. Who could he mean by that? Never mind. Fingers Malloy attempts an intervention:

Listen, this whole Bristol Palin on Dancing with the Stars thing – yeah we need to talk.

(Via Amato Activists Daily.)

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