John McCain drew blood with the Palin pick. That was obvious from the ill-considered instant press release from the Obama campaign deriding the accomplished governor of Alaska as the former mayor of a tiny burg on the tundra.
It hurt. McCain fooled everyone. The fumble-rooski just took a backseat to the McCain Maneuver.
Maureen Dowd is on the case, though. She’s got that Sex and the City world-weary cool thing working, see. All smart, jaded, and hard-hearted. With all that going for her, she writes with the subtlety of Randy “the Macho Man” Savage selling Slim Jims.
Check out this winning sentence in her latest column:
But that crazy maverick and gambler McCain does it, and conservatives and evangelicals rally around him in admiration of his refreshingly cynical choice of Sarah, an evangelical Protestant and anti-abortion crusader who became a hero when she decided to have her baby, who has Down syndrome, and when she urged schools to debate creationism as well as that stuffy old evolution thing.
Careful, Maureen. We know your tastes. Here, you point out that Sarah Palin is an evangelical Protestant (a group you find less than admirable), a supporter of a more open conversation about Darwinism (a concept you find baffling and disturbing), that she is pro-life (Taliban Alert!), and that she gave birth to a baby with Down Syndrome. There are three things about Sarah Palin in that sentence which you find really disagreeable. Those three things surround the fourth thing, which is the baby with Down Syndrome.
Would I venture too far afield if I were to assume you don’t care much for that, either? You prefer the Jocelyn Elders route? The one for really sophisticated types, right? Wasn’t it she who proclaimed a reduction in the birth rate of Down Syndrome children a public health victory? Even though the reduction was due to an increased abortion rate for such children? Ms. Elders, of course, is probably more what you have in mind when you think about effective and enlightened female political leadership.
More charitable readers may give you the benefit of the doubt and assume you just happened to mention the baby along with the things that bother you so much about Governor Palin. I’m not sure I can. I still remember when you gleefully referred to supporters of George W. Bush as “extra chromosome conservatives” in a conversation with the equally kindly Bill Maher (a guy who got kicked off the Craig Ferguson show for suggesting being fondled by adults might not be the worst thing that could happen to a kid). At the time, the National Down Syndrome Society called on you to apologize for your insensitivity in using the term pejoratively. I can recall the elder Bush and Al Gore both apologizing publicly for using the term in the past. Can’t recall you ever did. Huh.
Put the barbed tail back in its mucousal enclosure, Maureen. You’re about to let folks know more about you than you really want.