...because you know they want my opinion.
First, let me state my current political position: I am leaning toward McCain but am not decided. Obama hasn't won me over, and unless he starts getting specific will go the way of Kerry and Gore (I didn't want to vote for Bush twice, but I did because of their empty rhetoric). But the McCain that I voted for in the CA primary in 2000 is not the McCain of today, and I am not going ga-ga over Palin they way the Nutroots is over Obama.
I am an independant waiting to be won.
So, back to my advice for McCain.
I listened to the Palin's speech live on NPR and wow, it was great. It beat Biden's speech by miles and IMO beat even Obama's. Still, it was a speech. She passed test #1: she didn't fold in her coming out party. Still, what I have seen since then is depressing.
Like when someone tells a good joke and gets a great laugh, then goes on to tell the same joke for the next week expecting everyone to laugh just as hard, Palin has been doing almost nothing but her convention speech. What is up with that? Maybe that RNC speechwriter took a vacation.
Speeches don't win elections. Debates do, and real interviews. Palin is scheduled to go on ABC this week, but she should be lined up after that. I want to see her on Face the Nation, Meet the Press, The O'Reily Factor, Larry King (well, not Larry; we need hard interviews). She needs to suprise everyone and hold a press conference, then let the questions go for an hour. In short, she needs to prove to us that she can handle the media.
So far the only qualification that Obama has that Palin doesn't is that he has proved to be a good campaigner. In fact that seems to be the Obama-Biden talking point answer to the comparison between his and Palin's experience. And it has some merit. He has run an excellent campaign, beating the heavyweight tagteam Clintons in their best event (campaigning of course). His fund raising and primary skill show a level of tactics worthy of Karl Rove. But other than that, he is a lightweight whose main claim to fame is that he was against the war in Iraq back when he had no real say in the matter (unlike McCain, Biden, Kerry, and both Clintons).
Yet in their overconfidence the progressives are going full tilt at smearing Palin. If she is the lipsticked Pitbull conservatives are making her out to be, where is she? Why are her speeches so obviously retreads. Why haven't we seen any unscripted moments? The answer may be that she isn't ready. And if she isn't able to handle the campaign/media/press conferences, she should not be one heartbeat away from the president.
From the little I've seen, I think she can handle herself. They should take off the muzzle and let her go. That is what a VP candidate is for: attack dog.