November 5th, 2008
11:50 AM ET
5 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. Say it ain't so Sarah! Dog-gone-it you lost!

    Well America, I am proud of you today for the first time in my life!

    November 5, 2008 01:26 pm at 1:26 pm |
  2. Jamie, IN

    OMG, now the GOP will have to start telling the truth in order to compete with Obama and the new body politic. What a nightmare!

    Obama/Biden 08

    John McCain was running a 2000 campaign in a 2008 world. Oh well, life goes on and there will be many lessons learned this year.

    November 5, 2008 01:27 pm at 1:27 pm |
  3. Betty, Virginia

    Sarah Palin should never have accepted the nomination. She had to have known how ill prepared she was. Her narrow view on America is beyond words.

    She needs to learn to accept people not like her. She needs to understand that people who live in cities love America as much as those who don't. She needs to understand that the East Coast of America consists of people who families helped to shape this great country and take great pride in that fact. She needs to learn not to be mean spirited.

    She may have a following in the far right of the republican party but this repubican has no use for her. Her intolerance is intolerable to me. Good bye and good riddance...

    November 5, 2008 01:27 pm at 1:27 pm |
  4. Say it ain't so Sarah! Dog-gone-it you lost!

    Proud of America

    November 5, 2008 01:27 pm at 1:27 pm |
  5. Bee

    I know a lot of people who voted for Obama largely because of the fact that McCain was 72 years old and Palin was one 72 year old heartbeat away from the Presidency. It was too big of a risk. The GOP kept pushing this argument that Palin was more experienced than Obama, but I'd rather put my vote towards a Harvard Law graduate who knows the US Constitution like the back of his hand than a woman who can't even tell a child what the Vice President really does. I don't think that Palin was by any means dumb, but she did lack a hunger for information. An inexperienced candidate should at least show that she's willing to learn new things if she wants the US citizens to take her seriously.

    November 5, 2008 01:27 pm at 1:27 pm |
  6. Bently

    If the Republican Party places its bets on her, they will go down in flames again in 2012. Oh, wait a minute. That's a good idea. Where can I donate?

    November 5, 2008 01:28 pm at 1:28 pm |
  7. CM, AR

    I applauded McCain's VP pick because I figured it would shoot him in the foot! So sorry Sarah. Glad to see you go. Go home and raise your children.

    If the GOP thinks to put this woman up as a figure head they need to think again. There will be no Sarah in 2012.

    November 5, 2008 01:28 pm at 1:28 pm |
  8. Becky

    McCain is a gambler, and this gamble didn't pay off...big time.

    November 5, 2008 01:28 pm at 1:28 pm |
  9. GG

    Finally the US can rejoin the international community and not look like fools. The rest of us out here (the other 7 billion of us) have waited and waited, through 8 loooong years of disappointment and going "What are they THINKING over there? Have they totally lost it?"
    So welcome back to the world, guys. Cheers!!

    November 5, 2008 01:28 pm at 1:28 pm |
  10. Nisha, Little Rock, AR

    Although I think that Obama would have won with another person on McCain's ticket... I would still like to thank McCain for selecting Sarah Palin! Every little bit helps... or shall I say helped!

    Barack Obama 2008!
    44th President of the United State of America!!!!!!
    1st Black President of the United States of America!!!!!!

    November 5, 2008 01:28 pm at 1:28 pm |
  11. WW

    I was proud to have voted for Obama and even more proud after listening to his speech last night. I especially liked the inclusiveness of his language and the fact that he promised to listen to all the people who did not vote for him. Personally, I think Palin was a poor pick for VP and I strongly disagree with many things she said, including her inference that American citizens who are not republicans are not "pro-American". However, I encourage anyone who is reading these comments to listen to (President) Obama's speech and think about his words before writing these hateful comments about McCain or Palin. It will not help Obama to use divisive language about other American citizens, just because they felt strongly about a different political candidate.

    November 5, 2008 01:29 pm at 1:29 pm |
  12. REPUBLIC OF TEXAS

    THANK YOU SARAH FOR A GREAT FIGHT!!!!!!!!!

    YOU DID NOT HAVE ENOUGH MONEY TO BUY THE WHITE HOUSE

    SEE YOU IN 2010 or 2012

    November 5, 2008 01:29 pm at 1:29 pm |
  13. Karen from Charlottesville

    Sarah Palin is a smart woman and has a lot going for her – she has intelligence, beauty and charisma. Too bad she used her gifts to generate hatred and fear. It would be great if people like Sarah could learn to use their gifts to make the world a place of collaboration and peace.

    November 5, 2008 01:29 pm at 1:29 pm |
  14. Wes

    There is one thing no matter what, no one can take from you; your integrity. Only YOU can give it way.

    If Palin ever had any integrity she willingly gave it up for her personal ambitions. Her supporters and she can blame how they wish, but in the final accounting it was Palin who undid Palin.

    November 5, 2008 01:29 pm at 1:29 pm |
  15. mary dale

    go away Sarah, become a mother to your kids, they obviously need you – that should be your first concern.

    November 5, 2008 01:29 pm at 1:29 pm |
  16. Crystal

    I would like to comment on (Dave, Central Illinois), so you want to cancel BET, why because your upset that a Black man won the presidency? Get over it because a white man owns the station.

    Any way, Sarah was a joke from the beginning. McCain tried to make woman vote for him but, what he does not know about woman is that we are very particular about the people we trust and believe in.

    Hiliary did not get all those votes just becasue she was a woman.

    November 5, 2008 01:30 pm at 1:30 pm |
  17. C A

    I am stilll confused why some think that Palin excited the Republican base when she was first nominated. They did not know her. So what is it that excited the base?

    Buchannan and others give her praise for exciting the base after her nomination. But I say it was not Palin who excited them. It could not have been. They knew nothing about her. It had to be something superficial like her gender or some other emotional need that was missing.

    To say that Palin excited the base of the Republican party and enjoyed large crowds at her rallies may be true. But to say that she excited the base as a result of some legitimate reason as ability or experience or based on wha tshe believed is stretching it a bit don't you think. It would seem to me that rather than having something legitimate to excite the base, the base found a symbol that they needed to to excite themselves and what they believed and palin just went along for the ride.

    November 5, 2008 01:30 pm at 1:30 pm |
  18. Irma in North Carolina

    Well Sarah first of all I will say that Mccain gave a very good speech last night and for once it wasnt all about hatered. And as far as you are concerned, as you would say it was a task of God to Let Obama and Biden win this election. At least now the american people can rest in piece without having to worry that you might get in there.

    November 5, 2008 01:31 pm at 1:31 pm |
  19. t.c.jones

    I think we are in for a world of a surprise when we find out that there is no man that can change this world. No matter who he is or claims of what he can do. If all the people are not on the same page with the same idea with the same goal in mind then we will not have a chance.

    November 5, 2008 01:32 pm at 1:32 pm |
  20. Gail AL.

    I just hope Obama can hold it together, till 2012. If he doesn't throw us into a depression, or get us attacked, from his little expericence and judgement. Now we have an african- american for our president, 95% of blacks voted for him because he is black, not for what is good for the country, Let's see if Obama can deliver, After 4 years Obama's supporters will be ready to throw him out of the whitehouse. If he doesn't get us all killed first.

    GOD HELP US ALL

    November 5, 2008 01:32 pm at 1:32 pm |
  21. Lisa P

    In the end what really amazes me is how very limited and closed-off Palin's self-propagating world view is. Even more amazing she appears to think that she and the people who agree with her or look like her or live how she does somehow represent the real America. She is very wrong about that, as has been clear from the outset. God spoke yesterday for the good of the nation, but I suspect that she and her friends are even now denying the facts and trying to find some way to distort God's message to their own advantage.

    Speaking of which, I find it funny that Palin and McCain could only attack Obama and Biden by taking their quotes out of context but that the most effective attacks on Palin simply consisted of quoting her verbatim, the more the better. Very ironic.

    November 5, 2008 01:33 pm at 1:33 pm |
  22. Jack

    Sarah Palin represented the "dumbing down" of America, and I'm glad that America chose intelligence over her grating "folksiness". In the prank call from CKOI in Montreal, she missed a myriad of obvious points that should have given it away:

    1. You cannot see Belgium from the Palais Royal in Paris where Sarkozy lives.

    2. The Prime Minister of Canada is not Stef Carse but Stephen Harper.

    3. No politician would talk about loving to "take away life" and the horrendous mistreatment of animals that she seemed to embrace in that conversation.

    4. No politician would talk about killing baby seals.

    Honestly, I would have been afraid of having someone so ignorant of the world in the office of the VP so close to the presidency. I'm glad this chance has been denied her (it should never have been a possibility to begin with).

    November 5, 2008 01:34 pm at 1:34 pm |
  23. EBONY

    MC CAIN MADE A MISTAKE AND CHOOSE PALIN. WHAT HE SHOULD HAVE DONE IS CHOOSE ROOMEY, AND CHOOSE HER TO RALLEY THE BASE, BY GETTING HER TO CAMPAGNE FOR HIM. THEM HE MIGHT HAVE HAD A BETTER CHANCE TO BECOME PRESIDENT.

    November 5, 2008 01:34 pm at 1:34 pm |
  24. Laszlo in L.A.

    Thanks, Tina Fey. I never knew you were so funny until Sarah Palin briefly appeared on the national scene.

    November 5, 2008 01:36 pm at 1:36 pm |
  25. dEMOBRAT

    It would have been a surprise if a Republican had won this time around with the political climate as it was, along with the economy. I don't think Palin had anything to do with it.

    Can the liberals start being nice now?

    November 5, 2008 01:36 pm at 1:36 pm |
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