November 5th, 2008
11:50 AM ET
10 years ago

Analysis: Palin rocked campaign

Palin, at McCain's concession Tuesday night, boosted the GOP ticket at first but ultimately became a drag on it.

Palin, at McCain's concession Tuesday night, boosted the GOP ticket at first but ultimately became a drag on it.

PHOENIX, Arizona (CNN) - Sarah Palin's selection as John McCain's running mate redefined how vice-presidential candidates influence a campaign. Unfortunately for McCain, the Alaska governor hurt his presidential bid more than she helped.

Watch: Palin weighs in on 2012

Palin had been unfamiliar to most Americans, aside from some conservative writers and bloggers, who had admired her since she upended Alaska's Republican establishment by knocking off incumbent Gov. Frank Murkowski in 2006.

That all changed on August 29 - the morning after Sen. Barack Obama's acceptance speech at the Democratic National Convention - when Palin was introduced by McCain.

It wasn't just reporters who were stunned. Even McCain staffers at the event itself were shocked. Many assumed McCain would tap a GOP heavyweight like Mitt Romney or Tim Pawlenty. The most daring option, many thought, would be Joe Lieberman, a former Democrat.

But Palin's debut instantly energized the Republican base, which had long been cool to McCain, and the GOP ticket surged in the polls.

Full story

Filed under: Sarah Palin
soundoff (224 Responses)
  1. No Hillary = No Obama


    November 5, 2008 01:01 pm at 1:01 pm |
  2. Ben in San Diego

    Go home baracuda... you did a terrible diservice to our Country. What and ugly campaign... divide and conquer??? No... you LOST.

    Time for a lesson here Sarah...

    America judged Obama on the CONTENT of his CHARACTER... and he WON.

    November 5, 2008 01:02 pm at 1:02 pm |
  3. mr g

    GOOD BYE MOOSE KILLER return to the frozen tondra if they will even have you. And please do not even think about 2012,better to wait till 2024 after Chelsea wins with a black vice president.

    November 5, 2008 01:02 pm at 1:02 pm |
  4. Chris F.

    What will the Rebulicans say next? " It's an Obamanation!!!" LOL!!!

    November 5, 2008 01:02 pm at 1:02 pm |
  5. Amy

    Look at her face- she's literally looks like she is going to cry! I wish I could say that I feel sorry for her, but I can't. The lies that she has told about Obama were the most horrible lies I have ever witnessed any politician make, especially the horrible things she accused Obama of doing, like "palling around with terrorists." She's a liar and a hate monger! I simply cannot stand this woman!

    I'm so happy she wasn't elected Vice President. God only knows what would have happened to our Country if she was elected...

    So, yes, Sarah, God did do the "right thing." He sent you back to Alaska! Goodbye!!!!

    November 5, 2008 01:03 pm at 1:03 pm |
  6. Jacqueline

    The Governor represented the Bush Administration, and John Mc Cain picking her spoke volumes of who he was allowing to run his Presidency. If Mc Cain had been the same guy he was until 2004, I believe he would have been elected, but it was time for a change and Obama is intelligent, articulate, and encouraging in that he encourages all of us to take part in our Goverment. I believe that Michelle will be one of the best First Ladies and his family will be a long needed breath of fresh air.

    I am proud of being a middle aged white woman who was also a single mom to a successful child when she was younger and I know that the Barack's maternal side must feel very proud. His father should still be apologetic for being absent and I hope absent fathers everywhere decide to make a change as well.

    November 5, 2008 01:03 pm at 1:03 pm |
  7. the beginning

    she was NEVER QUALIFIED, this was a gimmick and it backfired, shame on mccain shame on palin, and shame on the republician party for letting them make a joke OUT OF THIS ELECTION, WHEN OUR COUNTRY IS HURTING SO BADLY. BARACK OBAMA SHOWED SO MUCH DIGNITY AND HONOR, THANK GOD FOR HIM, (PRESIDENT OBAMA.)

    November 5, 2008 01:04 pm at 1:04 pm |
  8. obama 08-12

    bye bye sarah go back to alaska,we won't miss you.

    November 5, 2008 01:04 pm at 1:04 pm |
  9. Palin Helped

    I'm not sure where our author Pete gets to his conclusion that Palin hurt more than she helped. Both the pre-election polls and the exit polls show quite the opposite. Was she ever popular with Obama supporters ... no, of course not. Did they use her as a whipping post to try to tear down McCain ... yes, of course they did. But if you look at those voters who thought Palin was consideration in their decision ... she helped McCain by several percentage points. The only time McCain was able to close in on Obama during the campaign, was when she was announced.

    I think most people forget that the country overall leans slightly right of center, and elections are all about getting you side energized and out to vote. Obama energized his side and out registered his side by 10 points ... that was the key.

    November 5, 2008 01:04 pm at 1:04 pm |
  10. Ken in NC

    I'm so glad she is gone. The sucker could not even congratulate President elect Obama on his win when she held her interview. I congratulate McCain for speaking for both of them. He had the knowledge to know that she didn't have it in her to congratulate.

    Now she can go back to the frozen tundra of Alaska and watch out for Putin to "raise his head". This woman is an airhead. I'm glad to see her go.

    November 5, 2008 01:04 pm at 1:04 pm |
  11. grahame

    With any luck within four years the American electorate will have become educated enough to see that this terrible woman is not interested in helping the USA with any problems it may have due to world events.
    She is only interested in herself. This stupid moronic egomanic will say and do anything in order to advance her own private agenda.
    As to the rabid right wing of the Republican party we can only hope that somewhere in her background someone discovers that she had an abortion.
    Her stance against gay rights, Row and Wade etc; is well known. Her zenophobic approach to the constitution is laughable, and if she ever got any kind of power then it will be a return to the George Bush style of taking away personal rights and spying upon her perceived enemies.
    If the Republicans ever want to gain power in Washington once more then don't touch this woman with a forty foot pole

    November 5, 2008 01:05 pm at 1:05 pm |
  12. Ronald, MS

    Did Sarah really think she could be Vice President? She's not educated, but she could go back to school. Learn how to speak properly and take a crash course on civics, government, geography, etc.

    November 5, 2008 01:05 pm at 1:05 pm |
  13. ANGIE

    My Fellow Americans Two Great things on this glorious Historic Day



    November 5, 2008 01:05 pm at 1:05 pm |
  14. JC Cole

    Now that your boy Obama is firmly entrenched, I see you are reporting far-reaching stories about Palin and her wardrobe and the story that she had issues with the McCain people and that "you will further investigate" that for your viewers.

    I might suggest that the lack of proof of Obama's birth certificate is far more important but you and I both know that your "in-depth" reporting will continue to ignore this and concentrate on Sara's wardrobe. How about a story on Michelle's lobster and caviar $500 "snack" at the Waldorf?

    You are amazing.


    November 5, 2008 01:05 pm at 1:05 pm |
  15. Maggie from Virginia

    Palin gets no sympathy from me. She is a terrible person and I hope God have mercy on her soul.

    November 5, 2008 01:05 pm at 1:05 pm |
  16. Lifelong Republican for Obama, Columbia, TN

    I don't blame Palin, I blame McCain. He should have known better than to pick such an inexperienced and wholly uninterested candidated for Vice President. Palin demonstrated rather effectively that she neither had the knowledge of crucial things like the economy or foreign policy, but she also did not have an interest in those things. She was a cheap Dollar Store version of Cheney. The first real decision of a potential president and McCain chose her.


    November 5, 2008 01:05 pm at 1:05 pm |
  17. president obama sounds so good

    sara who??

    November 5, 2008 01:06 pm at 1:06 pm |
  18. Independent Hoosier Voter

    As an independent who considers herself a moderate, this election has taught me quite a bit.
    America is much less racist than people believed.
    America is much more sexist than anyone could have imagined.
    The mainstream media, who should have lost all credibility by now after its cheerleading in the runup to war, stiil has great power to influence.
    And, it turns out that the liberals, who pride themselves on being open-minded, are much more hateful to those who dare disagree with their views than the conservatives ever were.
    When will the hateful comments end?

    November 5, 2008 01:06 pm at 1:06 pm |
  19. ***No longer lost in the fog***


    November 5, 2008 01:07 pm at 1:07 pm |
  20. Gayle

    Sarah was pulled into the big boy game not really knowing how to play. I pray that God will open her eyes to all that she has done and said in the last couple of weeks. Go home Sarah and rest. I was not one of your supporters but I do wish you well.

    November 5, 2008 01:07 pm at 1:07 pm |
  21. PJ

    I am so thankful that our country will no longer buy into old time scare tactics in politics anymore. This is the dawning of a new day. Politicians need to be above reproach when running for office and have good character. Gov Palin represents the Good Old Boy Regime. I never understood why she would say she went up against the good old boys when her actions reflect she is a part of them. I am sure we will see her again on the National scene however I hope not for a very long time. By then I hope she will have grown up and learned how to respect people that look different from her.

    God Bless President Elect Barack Obama, Vice President Elect Joe Biden and The United States of America

    November 5, 2008 01:07 pm at 1:07 pm |
  22. ekk

    McCain' timing the possibility of Hillary's 18 million supporters fall out didn't work! And to add to Sarah' inexperience that seals McCain fate. She has another chance to build her political base- McCain doesn't. Cindy McCain could have done a far better job- still a salute McCain – he conceded defeat like brave soldier -that he is- I am sure he fully support President Obama

    November 5, 2008 01:07 pm at 1:07 pm |
  23. John, MI

    The face of the motivation for millions of votes.

    Thank you Sarah, you helped the Democrats. We owe you one. Maybe we'll visit Alaska and put more money in your tourism account.

    November 5, 2008 01:07 pm at 1:07 pm |
  24. republicans hate america

    Good riddance to you and your inbred husband!

    November 5, 2008 01:08 pm at 1:08 pm |
  25. Anne

    I'm so proud to be an American and part of this ground breaking time in our country's history. I wept during Obama's speech, thinking of all his paternal forefathers and mothers have been through and how far they've come. I thought of JFK, MLK and Robert Kennedy, knowing that they are looking down with pride on our country. I'm also proud that our voters were not swayed by a pretty face in a Neiman Marcus suit. Way to go America!! And Sarah, please go back to Alaska and take care of your children. They need you way more than the American people do.

    November 5, 2008 01:08 pm at 1:08 pm |
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