Political Boxing

Andrew Spano

Many folks have been on record as saying that the 2008 presidential election has been the most heated race in, well, forever. Certainly in my lifetime that is the case – I’m 21 and have witnessed five elections that I can remember dating back to 1992.

What has become increasingly clear is just how dirty and unscrupulous this election has become. And to be quite fair, while both campaigns trade jabs, employ hyperbole and distort truth, it is really the media and, to some degree, the American public that is to blame for what has become, unmistakably, a reality TV show.

There is plenty of blame to go around on both sides of the aisle. What has many conservatives upset as of recently are the utterly vicious and downright mean attacks on Vice Presidential candidate Governor Sarah Palin.

When Sarah Palin entered stage right in Dayton, Ohio – and more prominently at the GOP Convention in the Twin Cities – she was almost unknown. The Democrats immediately retorted, “Sarah who?” I knew a mere two things about her: she was the governor of Alaska and a long shot for McCain’s veep pick.

Yet this was seemingly all too familiar. Didn’t we just go through something like this not too long ago? In the words of Yogi Berra, it was déj? vu all over again. The Democrats conveniently forgot their candidate, Senator Obama, was barely known by the American public, with the exception being those associated with the corrupt Chicago politics. Round 1: Draw.

Not too long after the euphoria of Palin’s nomination, the Democrats were quick to point out that McCain made a “political” move to reel in the undecided women voters and disgruntled Hillary supporters by choosing Palin. Would it have been political if he had chosen Mitt Romney to fill in the economic gaps of the ticket? Or would they have dubbed it the typical GOP ticket: old and white?

The correct answer is yes to all of the above, and the reasons are no different than why Obama chose his number two. Obama made a political move when he chose John McCain’s good friend, Biden, to shore up his lack of foreign policy credentials and experience. By using the Democrat’s logic, one would have to assume that Biden and his 38 years in Washington can hardly represent what Mr. Obama means by “change.” Round 2: Draw.

Inevitably, just as the right came after Mr. Obama with mass emails about how the senator was a Muslim and an agent of bin Laden, the left went after Palin with uncompromising vigor – even more so than McCain.

In the last month, things have gotten really ugly: from Democratic Underground’s attempt to sell Palin’s son Trigg on EBay to a democratic state representative’s son allegedly hacking into her email to the offensive slurs provided by Democratic Rep. Cohen (Tenn.) comparing “Governor” Palin to Pontius Pilate, the “governor” who ordered that Jesus be crucified. I’m sure you can guess who Cohen compared to Jesus? Hint: They’re both “community organizers.”

To be fair, the attacks on McCain and Obama as well as Palin are all hateful. (Has anyone heard anything lately from Biden? Maybe if he spoke up someone might spit at him, too!) Round 3: Slight edge to GOP due to Biden’s disappearance.

Putting aside all the villainous attacks on Palin, the one consistent attack from the left is that Palin just isn’t ready to lead this country. Her two years as governor and six years as mayor aren’t enough to compare to Obama’s eight years in the Illinois State Senate and three years as United States Senator according to many Democrats.

Never mind that Palin has more executive experience than Obama. Never mind that in running Alaska, Sarah Palin is running arguably the nation’s sixth most powerful state in terms of institutional powers: budgetary and appointment authority, veto power, among other factors. The Democrats are half right. The fact of the matter is that both Palin and Obama are inexperienced to be leader of the free world.

But, alas, I almost forgot! The Democrats almost had me convinced I was choosing between Palin and Obama. Thankfully, there’s a maverick with a wealth of experience that has always put his country first as evidenced by his honorable service and bipartisan leadership. That man is John S. McCain, and he is ready to deliver the final TKO in this bout.

This article orignally appeared in The Utica Observer-Dispatch.