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. FreeNLovIt

    I support Obama, but it would have been better with Hillary. We need 3 Presidents. There's too many problems for one MAN.

    November 5, 2008 01:19 pm at 1:19 pm |
  2. Scott

    One thing I would like to say. I do not blame Bush, republicans, or the Democrats for the mess that this country is in. I blame all of us. Four years ago we had the choice to get rid if Bush, and we did not, We gave him four more years to screw this country. Back then the war was dragging the country down.

    November 5, 2008 01:19 pm at 1:19 pm |
  3. JAD-Ohio

    Well, I for one was leaning towards McCain prior to the Palin pick. If he'd picked Romney or Huckabee, the tone of the campaign would have been much different, and McCain may have gotten my vote. But, once Palin came on board, and the divisiveness and hateful rhetoric began, I was proud to switch my allegiance to our new President. btw, I am a white 50 year old conservative affluent Republican who likely may see some tax increases under President Obamas plan, but I'm willing to sacrifice for the good of the country and those less fortunate than I.

    November 5, 2008 01:20 pm at 1:20 pm |
  4. ANGIE

    It is the People like Sara Palin that divides this nation And that is what she tried to do,Remember what President Obama said this is not a Red America or Blue America THIS IS THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA But Sara and Todd having Ties with Alaska Independence Party does not see America as we do!

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


    If this is truly a representative sample of the graciousness of CNN readers...

    ... how sad.

    Almost makes me want to ask, "What would Obama Do?" I have a feeling he'd take a higher road than I'm seeing here. The partisan sniping in this country has got to end.

    November 5, 2008 01:20 pm at 1:20 pm |
  6. KJL

    Mostly bad, I'm afaid. This woman is way too radical for modern politics, not to mention just plain dumb.

    November 5, 2008 01:20 pm at 1:20 pm |
  7. FreeNLovIt

    It was the ECONOMY. Palin was the perfect KRYPTON for Obama. Dont underestimate the power and grace of a woman. Wars and treaties are won and lost by them.

    November 5, 2008 01:21 pm at 1:21 pm |
  8. the snarly old hawk squawks in fellowship square

    No other person in politics anywhere in this world made my skin crawl
    more than this woman.That being said,you have to ask:Was she the only person who wanted the job?It was going to be a tough year for the
    GOP no matter who was on the ticket and you have to wonder if anyone with their sights set on the future wanted to sacrifice those
    aspirations for what was going to inevitably be a lost cause.She came out of the gate and energized the core of the party but I think as time went on,it became fairly apparent that she was completely unqualified
    to be a heartbeat away from the presidency.Does she have a future in national politics?Probably.Will she be successful?I gather not so much,but she cannot be counted out.No matter how much that appeals to me.

    November 5, 2008 01:21 pm at 1:21 pm |
  9. Reggie, MD

    The face that sunk a thousand ships, or should I say votes.

    Obama/Biden 08

    November 5, 2008 01:22 pm at 1:22 pm |
  10. Dionne

    No Hillary = No Obama

    Why are you still bitter about Hillary. She lost, dont blame Obama, blame the DNC. They decided on which delegates would be seated. I hate women who think that just because you wear a skirt that I as a woman should vote for you. I voted for the person who i thought had the best interest of the country and our views at heart. What makes Hillary so experienced, ok she's been a senator for 8 yrs, so what!! Why because she was the WIFE of a former President? Everyone thought that if she got elected that Bill would secretly run things. Dont you want to move past all of the Clinton/Bush days? grow up and get a life!1

    November 5, 2008 01:22 pm at 1:22 pm |
  11. Abigail

    I am not, nor was I a Sarah Palin fan, but let's face it, she was put in an untenable position for which she was totally out of her league. She should have been smart enough to know that, but obviously has an unfounded confidence in her ability, and therefore failed to realize the full level of her incompetence.

    McCain's poor judgment in selecting her was a gamble; but then, he is known to be a gambler. This time, he made the wrong choice. I think if he had made a different choice the race would have been a lot closer.

    Stop hammering Sarah. She needs to go home and take care of her family – and Alaska.

    November 5, 2008 01:23 pm at 1:23 pm |
  12. E Kowlaski

    Shame on you CNN.. You are relentless on your efforts to hurt Sara Palin. We will never watch CNN again.

    November 5, 2008 01:23 pm at 1:23 pm |
  13. Gabe

    Correction. The media caused Palin to be a liability for McCain, she was a benefit before the sabotage.

    November 5, 2008 01:23 pm at 1:23 pm |
  14. Lars

    To those that think the "liberals" posting here are venomous hate-mongers, check out Rush and Faux news commenters and tell me again how nice and considerate "conservatives" are.

    Everyone's a hypocrite these days...

    Time for everyone to get over themselves and work together. That, or we'll be even worse off in the future.

    November 5, 2008 01:23 pm at 1:23 pm |
  15. Mario In Texas

    Na Na Na Na, Na Na Na Na, Hey Hey Hey, Goodbye LoL

    November 5, 2008 01:23 pm at 1:23 pm |
  16. FreeNLovIt

    To Laverne, Palin was the perfect choice. If he picked the other men, women would have stayed home and it would have been less exciting. It wasnt Palin. It was the ECONOMY. People were angry with the outcome of the Hillary/Obama outcome. Women could have easily sit it out.

    November 5, 2008 01:24 pm at 1:24 pm |
  17. Navy in FL

    Sarah Palin is not qualified to run a Mcdonald's let alone a VP slot.

    "she and Mccain, dontcha know, they're just a couple of mavericks, who do mavericky things and things that mavericks do. That financial crisis, they shall allow not things do that, and also, The great ronald reagan."

    – Sarah Palin speaking on the financial crisis.

    A new day is here, And for the first time in a while, im proud to be american, and proud to serve the country.

    November 5, 2008 01:24 pm at 1:24 pm |
  18. Truth Hurts

    Did you guys see Palin and her husband? They played Mccain like he had the plague. Palin stuck her hand out there and her husband did not even shake Mccain hand. Palin was in this for her own personal gratification!!

    November 5, 2008 01:24 pm at 1:24 pm |
  19. Mrs.L




    November 5, 2008 01:24 pm at 1:24 pm |
  20. Michael in Houston

    She is the reason why McCain lost. Now will somebody please take the lip stick wearing pitbull and put her back in the frozen tundra. And if you myopic sore losers think that she even has a chance in 2012, you are dumber than what most that. She won't even win the Primary in 2012. And RNC, the next time you decide to pick a VP for your Presidnetal nominee, at least ask that person a few questions first. All that money the RNC has and they couldn't do one simple background check. Good riddens Sarah from Alaska. Now go back to Alaska and keep an eye on Russia since you can see her from your front door

    November 5, 2008 01:24 pm at 1:24 pm |
  21. obama 08-12

    bye bye sarah,don't forget to take joe the looser with you.

    November 5, 2008 01:25 pm at 1:25 pm |
  22. Freedom Loving Patriot (God fearing too!)

    Sarah Who?

    November 5, 2008 01:25 pm at 1:25 pm |
  23. Barb

    Does anyone know what happened to Joe the plummer? Did Palin take him back to Alaska with her? She should that is where he belongs with first dude Todd.

    November 5, 2008 01:25 pm at 1:25 pm |
  24. Paula

    Palin lost fair and square. Lessons to be learned: Women of this century will no longer tolerate sexist laws which would govern our bodies. Pro-choice is a huge majority of America.
    We would dearly love to see a woman in the White House-HOWEVER, she must represent all of the women, not just the ultra christians.

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

    what's "good" about energizing the most racist and ignorant segments of the population?

    November 5, 2008 01:26 pm at 1:26 pm |
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