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September 01, 2008

MSM suggests Palin lied about her stance on the Bridge to Nowhere. [krakatoa]

USA Today headlines that Palin supported the bridge to nowhere, suggesting that she lied in her first public speech as VP candidate.

While running for governor in 2006, though, Palin backed federal funding for the infamous bridge, which McCain helped make it a symbol of pork barrel excess.

There doesn't appear to be any "there" there, however:

Asked why she supported the bridge, Palin's communications director Bill McAlister said, "It was never at the top of her priority list, and in fact the project isn't necessarily dead … there's still the potential for improved ferry service or even a bridge of a less costly design."

She changed her mind, he said, when "she saw that Alaska was being perceived as taking from the country and not giving, and that impression bothered her and she wants to change it. … I think that Sarah Palin is someone who has the courage to reevaluate situations as they developed."

The headline will frame the issue however, describing Palin as just another hypocrite sucking up earmarks.

Are McCain and Palin savvy enough to predict and counter these sorts of leftist spin tactics from the mouthpiece of the DNC? It is an effective strategy to offer your opponent an arm, then when they overextend, give them a nudge into a tumble. If McCain's strategists have grokked that this is not the Media they thought they knew, they can use this particular bit of campaign judo again and again.

UPDATE: DrewM notes that according to this article, the 400 million was not actually diverted from Alaska at all. Rather, Congress killed the earmark, but allowed Alaska to keep the money to be used in other transportation spending.

Congresses head-fake on the issue in my mind reflects more poorly on them than on Palin, but keeping the money does seem to water-down her reformer credentials, and as Drew says, wouldn't have been nearly the applause line as "We told them no thanks, we'll do it ourself."

Palin's actions after being elected Governor and prior to any hint that she might be part of the 08 national ticket suggest she is supple enough to change her mind as the facts warrant.

This is an incredibly attractive feature in a leader, something McCain gets rightfully slammed for not possessing vis-a-vis the AGW hysteria and Amnesty.

It's no secret that I'm not a fan of McCain. I find his willingness to do things that benefit John McCain rather than things that help his country* to be incredibly vain and calculating.

All this makes the choice of someone like Palin all the more intriguing since she appears to actually embody the more conservative principles I feel McCain only occasionally pretends to have.

I'm still not even on the fence to vote for him, but I have to say: Despite all my previous assertions that I would never vote for the shit sammich, I feel for the first time like I could be convinced to do so.

If Palin continues to shine and can persuade me that she is not a McCain clone, I may just come to the conclusion that there is something less than disaster in store for the long-term Conservative ideals I believe in if McCain's ticket wins in November.

* McCain/Feingold, Amnesty, Gang of 14 etc...

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posted by xgenghisx at 12:31 AM

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