September 3rd, 2008
11:48 PM ET
13 years ago

Gergen: Palin delivers

[cnn-photo-caption image= caption="Palin addressed the RNC Wednesday."]Republicans got everything they could possibly want from Sarah Palin tonight: she was a large, confident personality - one Democratic friend ruefully wrote that she reminded him of Ann Richards - and she delivered an extremely well crafted speech. Before the speech, Republican strategists told Dana Bash of CNN that they hoped that she would show viewers "a common touch with executive presence", and she definitely succeeded at that.

Three things in particular stood out:

1. She joked that the difference between a hockey mom and a pit bull is ...lipstick. Clearly, in the next few weeks, she will play the role of a pit bull with lipstick. My sense is that she will very likely connect with blue collar America but may be much less successful in suburban America.

2. Her personal story is also one that will relate well to people. She has a quality of seeming like the girl next door.

3. She showed a lot of confidence in addressing energy toward the end of the speech, which gave her more substantive depth.

Now let us be clear: there will be tons of Democrats and others who will disagree with her and will take sharp exception with her views. Her jabs at Barack Obama and the Democrats were surprisingly personal at times. And she will face tough questioning ahead from the press. After all, there are still some serious questions about what kind of president she might be. We are going to have a rough and tumble race down the home stretch.

soundoff (1,124 Responses)
  1. Coach K

    Of course Palin delivered. Did anyone think she wouldn't? Did we really think that Sarah Palin would get on stage and go away?! NO! I expected Sarah Palin to deliver because the speech was written for her. However, what she and two others before her delivered has convinced me to vote Obama/Biden.

    I heard NOTHING that convinced me that the ticket and Party with the most executive experience can turn this country around.

    September 3, 2008 11:56 pm at 11:56 pm |
  2. Manuel TX

    She delivered...big time.

    I'm a huge Ann Richards fan and a Hillary fan.

    I'm also now a Sarah Palin fan.

    The Democratic party has proven itself incapable of putting a woman in the white house...who woulda tunk that it's the Republican's who just might.


    September 3, 2008 11:56 pm at 11:56 pm |
  3. Hillary Supporter

    This about the issues. It was Gods will that we go to Iraq? Come on people. Banning books? Husband joined a political party that wanted to separate from the United States? She went from curious to dangerous. This person can not be put in charge of our country.

    September 3, 2008 11:56 pm at 11:56 pm |
  4. Jason, Pittsburgh

    If Obama has the audacity to belittle this woman's qualifications by ignoring her position as Governor and go ahead and bash her because she was a mayor of a small town, it goes to show what kind of president Obama would be. Look down on the small town folk and those who represent them. Our nation has 262 cities with a population of 100,000+ and close to 100,000 towns with populations less than 10,000. Our nation is made up of a heck of a lot more Wasillas than Chicagos.

    September 3, 2008 11:56 pm at 11:56 pm |
  5. Andrew

    It's now cool to insult community organizers? This is the party of evangelical Christians? What would Jesus do? I'm sure he wouldn't make fun of missionaries!

    September 3, 2008 11:56 pm at 11:56 pm |
  6. Rocky A in Buffalo

    This whole Republican CONvention has been nothing more than a Bash Obama Party. Not one of the speakers can refrain from mentioning Obama's name and talk about the issues. When and where are these snakes going to start talking about the issues like the ECONOMY, HEALTH CARE? Just like Obama said, they don't have a platform of their own, so all they do is BASH.

    Forget Iraq, I like most Americans couldn't care less what goes on over there. Whats more important is whats happening HERE. And please, someone who "supports" this war, what exactly do we "Win" in Iraq?


    September 3, 2008 11:56 pm at 11:56 pm |
  7. AmyO

    Her speech was terrible. She said nothing about what she will do as Vice President or about why she is qualified to be Vice President. I thought it was incredibly insulting to Americans as well. I don't know how anyone can think she did a good job when all she did was make fun of Obama and the people that support him. Go back to Alaska Palin!

    September 3, 2008 11:56 pm at 11:56 pm |
  8. teflon warrior

    Palin put it all in perspective, her experience, wit and confidence proved all those naysayers wrong!! OBidden watch out!! Go get'em Sarah!!

    September 3, 2008 11:56 pm at 11:56 pm |
  9. THE O

    i am sorry Gergen she was so disgusting the whole night was disgusting. this shows you that mccain is just more of the same, they don't have any new ideas so they attack everyone else, they talk about victory, and values. But what about job losses, what about health care, what about earning a living wage. No they have nothing for America but more of the same.

    I am so disgusted with mccain and the whole republican party

    BARACK THE VOTE!!!!!!!!!

    September 3, 2008 11:56 pm at 11:56 pm |
  10. Straw

    Nothing original, there is not a single mentioned of economy and us common people. This party is so out of touch and hate full that I am getting sick to my stomach. They are driven by hate and fear. Bad choice for Veep. Mrs Palin got zero experience and living close to Russia IS NOT A FORIEGN POLICY experience like Republicans have been saying.

    September 3, 2008 11:56 pm at 11:56 pm |
  11. SLH

    So you make personal jabs, but can't take personal jabs. Please spare me? Being VP does not mean 4 years of Tonight Show opening monologue. All jabs, no substance. But I guess this makes me "un-American" to say this...::gasp::

    September 3, 2008 11:56 pm at 11:56 pm |
  12. Hillary Supporter

    Just keep chanting USA, and all of our problems will go away...not

    September 3, 2008 11:56 pm at 11:56 pm |
  13. Honesty

    I continue to be sicken by the liberal comments of Bazzile and Bernstein, and the other AA man(?Rolin) can not remember his name. To him specifically who seems so ofended about the community organizer title BO so proudly uses, Rolins get your facts straight. BO mocked the title of mayor the other day, now he is getting what he deserves.

    Excellent job Governor Palin. As a woman, mother, professional and an ex-Democrat turned independent, I couln't be prouder.

    McCain/Palin 08

    September 3, 2008 11:57 pm at 11:57 pm |
  14. wayne

    She didn't deliver. The speech was an absolute joke. This thing is over. Obama will be President come November.

    September 3, 2008 11:57 pm at 11:57 pm |
  15. Mike

    I feel like I'm watching a real life version of The Emporers New Clothes. I'm being told that she's the real thing. Everybody is talking like she's the real thing. And I see nothing, but I'm tempted to believe them just because they are saying it with such certainty. I truly think McCain needed something so drastic that he picked this completely unkown and simply decided to throw all his effort into trying to make the rest of us feel dumb for not agreeing. But I'm not going to fall for it. The facts are the facts. By picking her, McCain proved he is imcompetent for president.

    September 3, 2008 11:57 pm at 11:57 pm |
  16. DB

    I have never voted before in my life but after tonight, I see that the Republican party truly is just a bunch of false smiles, insults and poor attempts at humor. No substance at all. I am registering as a Democrat tomorrow.

    Obama/Biden 08

    September 3, 2008 11:57 pm at 11:57 pm |
  17. Kimberly

    Gov. Palin gave a great speech! She portrayed confidence, knowledge, and integrity with style.

    The Democratic VP nominee cannot begin to hold a candle to her.

    September 3, 2008 11:57 pm at 11:57 pm |
  18. sad sad

    all she did tonight was give a bunch of one liners. she spoke of no substance and offended all community organizers all around this great country. i can't wait til Biden debates her, its game on now!

    September 3, 2008 11:57 pm at 11:57 pm |
  19. juan

    was that the worst speech ever given by rudi guliani? was it even a speech at all??...

    September 3, 2008 11:57 pm at 11:57 pm |
  20. nerakami

    where is the rhetoric to unite this country? Why must it always seem to be attacks and divisiveness? I am very concerned about where this is going. I am very concerned that there is no reference faintly familiar to most of the extremely diverse population in this country.

    The parameters of being American seem extremely rigid and exclusive.

    I am extremely concerned...

    September 3, 2008 11:57 pm at 11:57 pm |
  21. T.lynch

    I would like to thank the Media for being just that the Media.
    It was said on GOod Morning America that the Vice President do what the PResident tell them to do. It was sad that Ms Palin would do what the Mcain party tell her to do.

    I really don't see what was so great. However I think it is a shame how the republican ticket is praising the daughter and her boy friend.

    The Fact is her Mother didn't tell her about safe sex (Condoms)

    The Fact is that they are writing a ticket for every young girl with the stamp of approval to say go head have sex get pregnant and you can marry her later. It is a shame and it is sad that the country is placing a stamp of approval for sex.

    Georgia (Praying for our nation)
    GOD for bid if John Mccain Dies.

    September 3, 2008 11:57 pm at 11:57 pm |
  22. Dennis Campbell

    "Surprisingly personal?" Give me a break! Gergen long ago went soft, making him a good fit for CNN."

    September 3, 2008 11:57 pm at 11:57 pm |
  23. Marc

    Sarah Palin's speach was dull, boring and did not hit the heart and soul of Americans. Matter of facts, it was so general and not personal. Nothing in her speach was to the point >> so forget about making her something out of nothing,

    September 3, 2008 11:57 pm at 11:57 pm |
  24. Hillary Supporter

    She stands for everything Hillary does not.

    September 3, 2008 11:57 pm at 11:57 pm |
  25. hick

    yes. obama's name was mentioned more than mccains. i think this election's all about obama. i'll go with obama. no hate there.

    September 3, 2008 11:57 pm at 11:57 pm |
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