Pumas 4 Palin

Senator McCain, meet your Running Mate, Governor Linda Lingle (HI)

Posted on: August 28, 2008

{Update: I admit to being totally off in my VP predictions for both parties, but feel vindicated by the fact that McCain did go outside the lower 48 states, and to a female governor, as I predicted/preferred. Evidently, I was led astray by my bias for warm weather, surfing, hula girls and and tropical mixed drinks! To, the campaign dynamic turned as discussed down below in this post. Thanks for visiting}



It’s been an unconventional conventional wisdom in modern American politics that when it comes to selecting an unconventional choice (read minority or not white), the Democrats are great at symbolic gestures but that the Republicans one up them with substantive actions.  Now, before my ‘progressive’ friends get their blood up, let me clarify. It is true that up and down the body politic the Democrats have always stood up for the Big Tent and practised it.

Hundreds of African-American mayors, national level politicians, thousands more at city and county levels have come of age, prospered and proudly stood for the broader principles under the umbrella of the Democratic party. They have been joined in recent years by Hispanics, Asians, and of course women. There are more women in Congress on the Dem side, nearly twice as many as on GOP.

The Democratic party goes to great lengths to select delegates to their national convention to reflect this rainbow character.

The Republicans meanwhile have been slow, though hundreds of women and fewer males of non-white persuasion have in recent years attained national stature.  There are some great GOP senators and politicians at the national level. Thousands at the county and state levels. yet, everyone remarks that your typical GOP event, specially the national conventions, tend to look, pardon the expression, lily white. There has always been less of an outreach on the part of the hierarchy to diversify, but that’s been changing lately. Gov. Bobby Jindal (LA) being a recent example.

What about big, dramatic moves, the more visible and stunning examples:

  • First woman UN ambassador, chosen by Reagan
  • First woman supreme court justice, Sandra Day O’Connor was picked by Reagan.
  • First African American Chairman of Joint Chiefs was chosen during GOP rule.
  • First African American and Woman  National Security Advisor, Bush43.
  • First African American Secretary of State, Bush 43.
  • First African American woman secretary of State appointed by Bush43.
  • First woman as the vice-presidential candidate chosen by Dems  (but she lost)
  • First Jewish person as the vp candidate chosen by Dems (but he lost)

To give Dems credit due, Carter did hire Andrew Young, he was the first black UN ambassador, Bill did hire Madeleine as the first female Secy of State.

Those last two items in the above list are the ones that I am talking about in this post.

With one smooth move, John McCaain can accomplish what the Dems have been unable to do, elect a VP who is both female and Jewish, Gov. Lingle. In the wake of Hillary’s candidacy, the McCain-Lingle team will be a shoo in.

Here she is addressing a GOP meet recently.

From the  Jewish Virtual Libraryof the AICE

Linda Lingle was born in St. Louis, Missouri, in 1953. When she was 12, her family moved to Southern California, where she graduated from Birmingham High, a public school in Van Nuys. In 1975, she graduated from California State University at Northridge, where she was editor of the Journalism Department Newspaper and the Alumni Newsletter. She was also selected to join the journalism honor society Kappa Tau Alpha. She moved to Hawaii after graduation

From the Almanac of American Politics at the National Journal:

Linda Lingle is the first woman elected governor of Hawaii and the first Republican elected since 1959. She grew up in the St. Louis area and Los Angeles’s San Fernando Valley; after graduating from California State University at Northridge in 1975, she moved to Hawaii, where her father owned a Ford dealership. She worked for the Teamsters and Hotel Workers unions in Honolulu and then founded the Moloka’i Free Press on that island, which is part of Maui County.

By most measures, using data compiled by On The Issues, on most issues that the American public talks about, the composite view is that:

Governor Linda Lingle is a centrist


According to Ballot-pedia

Lingle holds a few distinctions: first Republican elected governor in Hawaii in forty years since the departure of William F. Quinn in 1962, first county mayor elected governor in Hawaii, first female elected governor in Hawaii, first Jewish governor in Hawaii; the first twice-divorced governor of Hawaii; and the first not to have any children. During the 2004 Republican National Convention in New York, Lingle served as chairwoman of the convention during the absence of permanent chairman Dennis Hastert from the convention floor.

Prior to her gubernatorial administration, Lingle served as Maui County mayor, council member, and chaired the Hawaii Republican Party. As of November 20, 2006, her approval rating stood at 71% with only 24% disapproval.

As governor her greatest accomplishments are creating a record surplus of $730 million. Before that, the budget was in a $250 million budget deficit. She is also is credited for developing a strong economy, leaving Hawaii with a very low unemployment rate. She is also popular for signing in the Three Strikes Law Bill and Sex Offender Registry Website

Think of the advantages to McCain campaign .

Americans will be suddenly entranced by a completely new personality in front of them. The nation, the media, the blogosphere, the world, that for a whole year has been buzzed to headache levels by the hope and the hype, will now suddenly be focusing on something totally new.  For sure this will deflate some of the DNC/MSM anointed one.

Progressives, liberals, Jews, women, moderate Democrats,  PUMAs, some trade unionists, minorities of a large number of stripes will be  enchanted and taken in with this new person on the national scene particularly. 

Suddenly 18 million voters are reminded of something they did months ago, in a different season as it were. Regardless of what transpired at Denver, 18 miilion are reminded that they chose a woman.

For the 40% of Hillary voters who will not support Obama for whatever reason, the selection of Lingle will make it very easy to become a McCaincrat for a day.

For millions of undecided voters, already afflicted with Obama-fatigue, Gov. Lingle will be a breath of true fresh air.  She turned Hawaii red locally, now she could do it nationally.

The campaign dynamic will change dramatically. Obama already feels familiar. The one woman in a group of four aspirants will draw much attention and quite a bit of adoration.

Practical advantage against Biden. It is said Biden will be the pit bull or attack dog of this campaign. Can you really see Biden being mean in a debate to this nice motherly Jewish lady?  May be he would have attacked Hillary, not Lingle.

Almost subtly, people won’t see the pairings as:  Obama-McCain and Biden-Lingle match up, even if pundits talk that way. I guarantee you, the voter perceptions will be different. When the typical voter looks at the four, they will subconsciously categorize them into pairs differently. It will be  more a comparison of Biden with McCain and Obama with Lingle.  Once that angle sets in, Obama is toast. Lingle’s resume, style and background are every bit a match to the Obama story and she will win people over. Especially, elderly females, men of a certain age and most minority voters will be entranced.

The contrast between the manufactured nature of Obama’s persona and campaign versus the natural and organic nature of the career and resume of Gov. Lingle will be painfully obvious. Rock star meet public servant. Even the kids will have a hard time staying high. (More koolaide please).


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