When Palin first took to the stage at the Republican National convention, the Democrats immediately recognized just what a serious threat to them she represented. Her attacks on Obama were stinging and effective, and suddenly the GOP was energized and ready to take on all comers. Worse for them she represented a new force on the national scene, a charismatic figure from outside the beltway with whom the electorate could identify with as one of their own.
The choice of Palin as VP nominee was probably one of the most inspired choices ever made in a Presidential election. While only the most optimistic of us could have hoped for a win under the circumstances, I believe that she was probably the reason why we were able to hold off a real disaster at the polls, it could have been much worse. Disillusioned conservatives and libertarians came back to the fold and in the process denied the Barr/Root ticket the three million votes many of us were predicting.
The result was of course one of the most vicious campaign of personal attacks, vilification, ‘investigation’, innuendo, downright lies, computer hacking, obscenity, and illegal acts, ever perpetrated in a Presidential campaign being launched, not only against her but her children as well by the Obama campaign.
In the Senate race in Georgia, outright victory was narrowly denied to the Republican candidate Saxby Chambliss by the Libertarian candidate who got around three percent of the vote. The result was a runoff election between Chambliss and the Democrat candidate Jim Martin, which was critical to both parties as a Democrat win would have granted that party a filibuster proof majority and the ability to do whatever they wanted without fear of serious opposition.
They went all out for it, with Bill Clinton and Al Gore, stumping for Martin and Obama doing radio ads and automated phone calls for him.
John McCain, Rudy Giuliani, Mitt Romney and Mike Huckabee, helped Chambliss but at the end of the day Palin arrived and was greeted by rock star type audiences, really carrying the day. The end result was the Democrats lost in a thirteen point flogging, a great result which should provide new impetus to the GOP.
While the DNC will undoubtedly continue with their underhand efforts to undermine Palin as that is their nature, it is clear that she has weathered the storm easily, and the public at large has rejected those efforts. Despite everything she is still a force to be reasoned with.
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