Putting Lipstick On A Monolith

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Supporters of Republican vice presidential candidate Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin wear toy red lips on Se

Supporters of Republican vice presidential candidate Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin wear toy red lips on September 10, 2008, in Fairbanks, Alaska. Source: sloomis08 hide caption

toggle caption Source: sloomis08

There have been few elections that are more fun to cover than this one — it is historic in almost every way, and it has put feminism back on the table (kitchen, dinner, and pub) the most I've seen in a long time. Sen. Hillary Clinton's candidacy — and now Gov. Sarah Palin's — have proven at least that women are not a block — we are no monolith — so any politician that makes a cynical choice may find that it backfires. We've talked at length about both the animosity and the support that Clinton received from women — and today we're going to ask women to consider Palin. (Here's a little required reading for you all, most of which was written by guests we'll speak with today.) I hope you'll weigh in too — does Palin thrill, disturb, and/or perplex you? Are the "Mommy Wars" back? What are you talking about when you talk about Palin with your friends?



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It really comes down to qualifications. Is she ready to be president? Is that why she was chosen?

Sent by Vicki | 2:11 PM | 9-16-2008

Sarah Palin is NOT a feminist! In fact, I would say Sarah Palin represents the opposite of feminism while Hillary Clinton represents the promise of feminism. Sarah Palin is against a woman's right to choose, no matter what and that is a core feminist issue. Sarah Palin is little more than GWBush in a skirt. And thats being generous.

Sent by M Annette Watlington | 2:12 PM | 9-16-2008

I'm a woman who wants to see a woman become President. However, I want her to become President by an election inb which she is the Presidential candidate and not by default. If McCain gets elected the odds are good he might die in office leaving us with Palin. Heaven forbid!

Sent by CAROLINE DUNHAM | 2:13 PM | 9-16-2008

I guess I'm one of those rare voters who votes based upon the issues and not the gender, race, religion of a candidate, or whether I feel like I could "share a beer" with them. Sarah Palin's views on the issues I care about are so different from mine, that she is the last person I would want to have be a heart beat away from the presidency.

Sent by Mary, Tualatin, Oregon | 2:13 PM | 9-16-2008

I'm sorry, but if you can't see that Palin and the Republican Party is completely against all feminism has worked to achieve for both women and men, then you have serious cognitive problems.

Having a vagina doesn't make one a feminist. Having a woman as a VP nominee is an achievement, but let's not act like voting for that ticket does anything to support women. Don't be blinded by supposed achievements - focus on the policies and not the people.

Sent by Rachel | 2:13 PM | 9-16-2008

Even though it is a relief that America is finally accepting women in roles of power, I find McCain's choice in Sarah Palin only to be a political move intended to gain woman voters. I'm not interested in voting for a person based on his/her gender, just as I'm not interested in voting for a person based on race. I vote based on the issues and urge my fellow female voters to do the same. McCain/Palin don't represent any of my values.

Sent by Carrie Allison | 2:13 PM | 9-16-2008

I am glad that there is finally a representative of feminism that isn't in lockstep with the screaming liberal issues of the left. Women are not just one group with one view that is why Sarah Palin is attractive.

Sent by Sherianne Schow | 2:14 PM | 9-16-2008

Could someone tell me why are you are not reporting her stance on shooting wolves from airplanes and bounty of wolves front paw & she is OK with Polar bears drowning? I have seen this reported in the Maimiherald but you have not had the courage to bring it up! WHY??

Sent by Marleen Oetzel | 2:14 PM | 9-16-2008

Sarah Palin does not believe in reproductive rights. I consider reproductive rights to be an important part of feminism and cannot consider a woman that does not believe in reproductive rights to be a feminist.

Sent by Barbara Flaig | 2:15 PM | 9-16-2008

Give me a break - a real person?? As a woman, I don't want a "real person" as vice president, I want someone who knows something about foreign policy and the economy - Sarah Palin knows nothing about either.

Sent by Penny Beach | 2:16 PM | 9-16-2008

Don't you think it's just as bad to not vote for someone because he's black as it is to vote for a woman just because she's a woman? I would hope that most women are smart enough to see through McCain's choice as nothing more than manipulative. The choice of McCain-Palin would set women's rights back a hundred years.

Sent by Kathy Earls | 2:17 PM | 9-16-2008

Insulted? I am insulted that anyone would think that women will or should support Palin only because she is a woman. Who cares if she is a woman? It's the issues! I will vote for Barak Obama because he stands with me, a woman, on the issues I find vital.

Sent by Lizzy Jones | 2:17 PM | 9-16-2008

The issues that are important to me are the Supreme Court appointments, choice, gun laws and the environment. Sarah Palin is the exact opposite of what I look for in a candidate.

Sent by Cindy Edwards | 2:18 PM | 9-16-2008

I am a 56 year old white woman, mother of three and I am absolutely appalled at the choice of Sarah Palin for Vice President. I would never vote for a ticket just because a woman is on it. What about the many serious issues facing our country. The person chosen should have the intellect to deal with all of these issues, man or woman. The fact that religion and life style choices and women's reproductive rights even enters into the running of our government sickens me. Do we really want anyone in that position who cannot understand science enough to question whether dinosaurs existed??

Sent by Paulette Angvall | 2:18 PM | 9-16-2008

Whether or not Sarah Palin's "story" resonates with me is not relevant in an ELECTION -- it might be if I wanted to have coffee or a beer with her, but not if I want her to be the second in command of our nation. I don't select a candidate -- for president or VP -- based on their story, but based on their ability to lead, their experience and their stand on the issues. She may have something in common with me as a woman (or NOT) BUT if she doesn't back a platform that appeals to me it is all for naught.

Sent by Amie | 2:18 PM | 9-16-2008

As a feminist woman, I have always argued that I wanted to be judged on my merits. Unfortunately, Sarah Palin does not measure up to these standards. I want my President and Vice president to be highly informed on foreign policy (I can see Russia from Alaska does not meet my standard); understand domestic policy issues. I am also deeply concerned about her style as governor, her position on teaching creationism in the schools, her skepticism about man-made climate change, and her positions regarding oil drilling.

Sent by Alexandra Korros | 2:29 PM | 9-16-2008

I was more concerned about Cheney being "a heartbeat" from the Presidency. Maybe we need to also take as close a look at Joe Biden. I once voted for him when he ran for the Presidency. But, he isn't exactly "honest Abe" himself. I think we need to take a closer look at the issues and promises...I find it hard to believe promises people make, like "I'll stop these corporations from sending our jobs out of the country" and "There will be jobs for all Americans who want them". Please tell me how you're going to pull off that little magic act.

Sent by Sheryl Johnson | 2:29 PM | 9-16-2008

Why is NPR still talking about this with all thats going on? I'm 50, mom of three, work, live in an affluent part of my community - I even look like Palin - I don't relate to her because she is not smart. And, by the way, even a liberal democrat like me figured out a long time ago - you can't have it all as a mom. One gets most of your energy. I picked my kids.

Sent by Kathy | 2:29 PM | 9-16-2008

For John McCain to have selected Sarah Palin as his running mate reflects poorly on his judgement and is insulting to women. She is completely unqualified to be President or Vice President of the United States. I am appalled to think Senator McCain believes that women will blindly vote based on gender. I am a 53 year old woman who has a family and has been successful in a corporation dominated by men. I know what it takes to do both. Perhaps Sarah Palin is a great (2 year)governor for the state of Alaska. That does not make her qualifed, IMHO, for high federal office.

Sent by Deborah Elias-Smith | 2:29 PM | 9-16-2008

As a mother of three, and someone who would be considered an ardent political junkie, it absolutely astounds me that people would support Palin based on the sole prerequisite that she is a woman and a working mom! She has define her candidacy by her ability as a mother, but then when the subject is broached by a reporter, they are being 'offensively sexist'. Our economy is in tatters, our standing in the world diminished, and our citizens thouroughly stressed financially, and as a PROUD feminist, I will be voting for someone who actually addresses these issues, educates themselves thoroughly on all sides, and is willing to take advice from both sides of the aisle. Keep your lipstick, I'll be voting for someone who is actually going to fight for everyday Americans, Barack Obama!

Sent by Tess | 2:29 PM | 9-16-2008

I am a 41 year old mother of two. I have an MBA from a prestigous top 5 businees schooL. I am an engineer and I chose to leave the world of high powered consulting to care from my two children one who has learning disabilities. I am tired of hearing how the superwoman of today is the one who is trying to have it all on the back of others. Palin has what she has because of her extensive FREE support system of family. A majority of my friends who are executives in banking, law, academia struggle every single day to patchwork their working and family lives together with inadequate social and cultural provisions for child and family care. Palin does not represent me or my friends. We are extensively educated, very experienced and do not have her options.

Sent by Ann Adams | 2:29 PM | 9-16-2008

I am appalled that women would vote for McCain because of his choice of running-mate. I thought after watching what Republicans did to this country in the last 8 years that we wouldn't be fooled again with image over substance. We shouldn't choose someone we want to have a beer with for our president, we should elect the person is smarter than us, with judgement and character, not a manufactured facade that is Sarah Palin.

Sent by Linda Honigfort | 2:30 PM | 9-16-2008

I am a white woman. I am very distressed that we once again are spending time on Sarah Palin, hockey mom, woman. LET'S TALK ISSUES. I have a brain. I vote according to the issues. The Rovian strategy has worked once again. Get us talking about everything, but what we really need to be talking about. The media has played right into it. I challenge Sarah Palin to be a real woman and talk to us about the issues. Has anyone bothered to look around them? Women, men and children are facing tough times. Let's get going!!

Sent by Tess | 2:30 PM | 9-16-2008

One of the guests today compared Sarah Palin's situation (having 5 children) to Nancy Pelosi, also the mother of five. The big difference is that Nancy Pelosi sought national political office in 1987, when her youngest child was a SENIOR IN HIGH SCHOOL...big big difference...Sarah Palin cannot do it all, and she is not even qualified enough to try!!!!

Sent by Judith Nathans | 2:30 PM | 9-16-2008

Which is it? Is Palin Superwoman, running a government with one baby on her knee and another at her breast? Or is she like a lot of male politicians, with a family at home and a spouse and all sorts of other people to help her raise her family while she spends much of her time working? If she's going to be vp, I hope it's the latter. Some women seem to insist on believing "she's just like me," as if she's making dinner, giving baths and driving kids around town while also running for vice president in two states a day. That's simply not the case. She's not just like you. She's like most other people in politics with young children, she has a lot of help. So let's get past the fact that she's a woman and a mom and start looking at what she would actually do in office, while her children are cared for by other people most of the time.

Sent by Jana | 2:30 PM | 9-16-2008

I am a 28 year old white woman, and I think that Sara Palin represents all of the institutions that feminists fought so hard to abolish. I originally voted for Hillary Clinton in the primaries, and was torn in my allegiance to the Democratic Party when McCain chose a female running mate. Her alliance with the religious right sickens me and further proves John McCain was simply "playing politics" in his VP pick.

Sent by Jo-Anna | 2:30 PM | 9-16-2008

Sarah Palin has lied to the american public and does not represent a woman who I want to support. She has not turned down government earmarks and she has lied about that

Sent by PAt Reddemann | 2:30 PM | 9-16-2008

I hope any Democrat woman who votes for her because she is a woman understands that as President, she will appoint Supreme Court judges who will overturn Roe v. Wade. If your daughter is in the market for an abortion, dust off the old coat hanger or send her to Mexico or some back alley clinic. That's who Palin is.

Sent by Mike | 2:31 PM | 9-16-2008

Voting with our UTERUS!!!Quite a quote. Please tell your guest I can't think of a more offensive phrase. You CANNOT outlaw abortion and flatter yourself to not realize that what you ARE voting for is forcing girls to develope babies against their will even in the case of rape and incest. That is akin to physical involuntary servitude that can harldy be compared to man paying taxes and I used my brain to come to this conclusion, thank you very much!

Sent by Mary in Peabody | 2:31 PM | 9-16-2008

I'm listening to this discussion, and it frightens me to hear what I judge to be intelligent people talking about her as if her gender is all that's important to them. If they're as smart as I think they are, I hope they will do their research on who and what she is -
her views scare me to death. The issues are getting lost here - what about health care, alternative fuels, our failing economy? All people seem to care about are her designer glasses and red shoes..... OMG, what's happening to this nation? Has everyone forgotten what's been going on for the last eight years?

Sent by Rachel | 2:31 PM | 9-16-2008

I am a man whose mother in the 1960's and 1970's, and whose wife today are professionals. America needs the sensitivity, the nurture, the feminism and the intelligence of a woman in the presidency. HOWEVER, Palin/McCain's policies and positions lack those thoughtful and intelligent qualities that I look for in a President. Obama has my vote this time around. Hopefully someday a woman too will lead the country with these qualities.

Sent by Laurence | 2:32 PM | 9-16-2008

My Republican sister-in-law called me to say I could now vote for a Republican since there was a woman on the ticket! I was floored to think she would assume I would ignore the issues important to me and other women and simply vote for "the woman". The scariest part of this conversation is the fact that she is an immigration attorney, well-educated and informed.
As for whether or not she resonates with me, the answer is a resounding no. I am a 45-year old single career woman with no children. I work very hard, pay huge taxes as a single person, own several properties, am planning for my own retirement and get no tax breaks for any of my efforts. I may consider voting for a Republican woman when we remove reproductive healthcare from the political landscape and begin giving tax breaks to those of us who support zero population growth rather than having huge families!

Sent by Vicki | 2:32 PM | 9-16-2008

The question isn't whether she can govern, it's HOW she'll govern. And what we're now seeing (see recent NYTimes article) is that her administrations have been marked by cronyism, secrecy, defensiveness and vindictivenesss against her enemies (i.e. anyone who disagrees with her). Sounds a lot like George W. Bush and team to me, and I think that's the last thing we need. I'm prochoice and progressive in my politics, and I will not vote for her.

Sent by Cynthia McCune | 2:32 PM | 9-16-2008

Palin's parental choices aren't relevant to the discussion; her governance is. This is a woman whose administrations in Alaska were characterized by secrecy, cronyism, and revenge against any political opponent who dared to question her policies. No candidate better represents the Bush-Cheney style of government. People need to get beyond the gosh-wow factor of her being a strong woman who hunts moose, and take a serious look at Sarah Palin, the governor.

Sent by Jay Brazier | 2:32 PM | 9-16-2008

The idea that women will vote for Palin just because she is a woman is both appalling and frightening. To place someone with so little experience (18 months as govenor) and such conservative views (reproductive rights, gay rights, evolution vs. creationism) just a heartbeat away from running this country is wrong. I might be swayed to consider Palin as a viable candidate in 10 years once she gained more executive experience but certainly not now.

Sent by April Stevens | 2:32 PM | 9-16-2008

I am a 35-year old single woman, and I've spent my entire professional life in male-dominated professions, including fighting fire and flying helicopters in Alaska. Whether you fight fire, are a pilot, or are the VICE PRESIDENTIAL candidate, the most important thing is whether you are QUALIFIED for the job!! Gender is not important when lives are at stake, but competence is. I have seen many horrible examples of women being put in positions of power or leadership because of pressure to "hire more women", and I feel as though this kind of thinking has now reached its pinnacle with the McCain campaign.

I don't respect Palin as a person, I don't feel she is especially intelligent or exceptional, and I am completely horrified that so many people are using something as shallow as gender to pick a presidnetial candidate.

Sent by Melanie Hunter | 2:32 PM | 9-16-2008

I'm confused by Katherine Mangu-Ward's (I think) constant comment that Sarah Palin is a "real person." What does that mean, exactly? Who does she consider to be "unreal". If she is referencing authentic leadership, I'd like to know how she thinks Palin is demonstrating that. Take, for example, Palin's comment on community organizing. Either she authentically believes that community organizing is something worth mocking and disrespecting, which I think is a key component of a democracy. Or she doesn't believe it, and is simply reading a speech someone else wrote in order to get votes--Not very authentic, not very real.

Sent by Sarah | 2:32 PM | 9-16-2008

Those who think it is not important whether you think Sarah Palin's personal life is relevant is mistaken. Republicans nominated her precisely for that reason--a woman whose story they hoped women would identify with. Otherwise, why nominate her? Don't tell me she is the most qualified, best prepared-to-lead, best prepared-to-advise Republican (of either gender) in the whole country.

Sent by Mother of three | 2:33 PM | 9-16-2008

If you had been in a room full of African Americans watching the Academy Awards the year Halle Berry won best actress, most there were hoping the "Sister" would win. I wish the White women that continue to be polled would just be honest and admit that they to, are voting for McCain-Palin because she is their sister.

Sent by Alphonso, Florida | 2:33 PM | 9-16-2008

For me, as a 30 year old mother of three, the candidacy of Sarah Palin is extremely insulting. There were so many other people who were more qualified for the invitation to run as the VP and the fact that chose her begs the questions of why?! There is an assumption inherent in the choice of Sarah Palin that I abhor! This assumption that she will appeal to women like me, as if I cannot see that it was a low brow, pandering and political choice, done only to con women into thinking more about gender and less about issues that are important in our country! Give me a BREAK!

As to whether the media should investigate into her life. . .the other candidate have had their lives torn apart and then put back together by the media for years. It is our JOB to tear her apart and if she can still stand after we've seen all there is to see, then perhaps she can deserve the position so generously offered to her!

Sent by Meladara | 2:33 PM | 9-16-2008

I feel like so many voters are ignoring Palin's stance on abortion: against abortion EVEN IN THE CASE OF RAPE? I'm shocked any woman would support that stance.

Sent by Carrie | 2:33 PM | 9-16-2008

Palin's candidacy is nothing more than a distraction in this election.
I as a single mother, lower-middle class feminist and socially aware woman am appalled that she is even a apart of this election. She is Pro Life, has called for the banning books, has very little experience in this arena nor the background to understand the whole slew of issues facing the US today.

Woman need to open their eyes! She is nothing more than George Bush w/ a uterus.!

Sent by stacey | 2:33 PM | 9-16-2008

A republican on most issues, I was very intrigued when Palin was announced as the VP candidate. However, the more that I have heard her speak, the more she sounds to me like she is already part of the political systems that I have grown to dislike. Your one guest refers to her as the most "real" candidate, but she seems to be less genuine to me than Barak Obama. So, even though I disagree with the guiding ideas of the Democrats, I don't want to vote politicians into office that will produce more of the same.

Sent by Brenda Nielsen | 2:33 PM | 9-16-2008

I do not believe women can have it all. I am a professional woman and a mother of four. Based on my experiences, I realize that I could have been a better mother if I had given it 100% and likewise I could have had a better career if I had given it 100%, but I had to make compromises and Sarah Palin must make compromises. I think she should be honest with the American people and tell us what she will compromise. Then, we will be able to make an informed decision.

Sent by Karen | 2:33 PM | 9-16-2008

I'm all for women moving up the ladder, but voting for her JUST because she's a woman WOULD be sexist. Sarah Palin mirrors Bush even more than McCain. I see her as Bush/Cheney in a skirt. She could take away many of the rights we've worked so hard to get.

Sent by Kathy Alexander | 2:33 PM | 9-16-2008

It is difficult for me to imagine a potential president, regardless of gender, having only a BS in journalism. Our world is becoming more and more complex and having an extensive education is vital. I am a professional woman who has raised three children nearly by myself. I know how demanding trying to fulfill roles of mother and career is. I believe that Sarah Palin is just plain not qualified.

Sent by Mary | 2:33 PM | 9-16-2008

Palin's Chief of Police in Wasilla reversed a policy so that the town will now charge rape victims for a rape kit to investigate the crime.

Also, one of today's guests mentions that the Fairfax rally was 23,000. The Washington Post estimated 8,000. I love that no fact checking occurs during the show.

Sent by Tom | 2:34 PM | 9-16-2008

I am a single mom, raised two sons, and a feminist. I'm not voting for Palin because of her RECORD in politics:
She inherited a city with zero debt, but left it with indebtedness of over $22 million. This says a lot. The last 8 years has put our economy into tremendous debt...we don't need more of the same. Let's hear MORE about who she was as a politician and less as what she is about being a woman. Women CAN be leaders. Palin's just leading in the wrong direction for me.

Sent by Trudy Tucker | 2:34 PM | 9-16-2008

Sarah Palin is the major victim of this travesty. She would certainly not have been chosen if Senator McCain had been generating interest and excitement, and if Senator McCain thought through his actions and acted carefully, like Obama does. It reminds me of the pretty women whose images sell beer and cars.

If she were to become vice president, it would be another Quayle/Agnew situation. The Republicans would hide her in a back office... worse still, they might choose Cheney to give her on-the-job training.

I feel very sorry for Sarah and her family.

Sent by ELV | 2:34 PM | 9-16-2008

Why are we talking so much about her at all? The PRESIDENTIAL candidate is McCain, NOT Palin

Sent by Anna Chinn | 2:34 PM | 9-16-2008

This will be wildly unpopulary in many circles but I cannot believe Sarah Palin can do the job of a vp and the job of being the mother of 5, including a baby with Down Syndrome. Something will have to give...and while she is absorbed in her work, we all know it's her kids who will suffer.

Sent by Amy | 2:34 PM | 9-16-2008

I am a 56-year-old woman, a former Republican elected official (local government executive). John McCain's choice of Sarah Palin convinces me that he puts his desire to win ahead of the good of our country. I cannot imagine entrusting Sarah Palin with life-or-death decisions for my daughter (abortion) or my country (war and peace).

Sent by Susan Galbraith | 2:34 PM | 9-16-2008

Many people seem to be drawn to Sarah Palin as a role model, however, as the New York Times and other publications have pointed out recently, Ms. Palin has run a highly secretive administration which has been characterized by the same kinds of cronyism as the Bush administration. If she is, in fact, able to "do it all", why did legislators in Alaska take to wearing "Where's Sarah" buttons? She is proven that she is a very shrewd, power hungry politician, not that she is qualified to be vice president.

Sent by Eric | 2:35 PM | 9-16-2008

Neil Conan asekd the question, "What does Sara Palin's candidacy meant?" My answer is "reverse sexism and disaster".
Reverse sexism: Usually women are denied opportunity because they are female; Palin was chosen because she is female. Disaster because her view of the world is skewed towards the religious right and that does not make for good governance. Anyone who was not going to vote for McCain, or waslukewarm about it before Palin hit the ticket isn't voting for McCain to win. They are voting for McCain to die so that Palin can step in as president.

Sent by Kathleen | 2:35 PM | 9-16-2008

I see palin as a female GWB. Her administration is as sinister and secretive as the whitehouse and is a clear danger to personal freedom and our constitution. They use private email in hope they can keep those from the public eye. That is paranoid and smacks of Saddam and not Thomas Jefferson.

Sent by wesley dukes | 2:35 PM | 9-16-2008

I am listening to this and I am appalled.

How is it that one picks a VP who is a heartbeat away from becoming the President based on her skills as a working mother.

Am I missing something but this kind of discussion makes me think we are just acting like a bunch of dummies.

Here is another person talking about drilling in Alaska, the oil and gas up there is only about 2 to 3% of our needs. By the way if this caller did her homework instead of listening to the sound bites she would have found out that the oil stocks in the Alaska are dwindling. Dwindling that means it's not going to help at all.

Please do your homework and don't believe in what the candidates say.

Become educated, please!

Sent by jeff | 2:36 PM | 9-16-2008

I am an active duty military wife, small business owner, and pro-choice.

I am intrigued by Palin's candidacy and one thing the pundits are not talking about --

The last two serious candidates for national office -- Hillary Clinton and Elizabeth Dole -- were both defined by their husband's role in national politics -- (or we can look at Christine Todd Whitman or Sen Murkowski for daughters of famous politicians).

Here Palin is TRULY breaking ground. I support her -- and the reason I don't get hung up on the pro-choice issue is that we are looking at an impossible thing to do (amend the constitution ) super-majority in both houses/ and 75% of states ratifying. Really I think the politics of fear should be replaced with good managers like Sarah Palin who get things done.


Sent by Alice Ganier | 2:36 PM | 9-16-2008

Explain to me how she is real? I cannot relate to her at all. Sarah Palin may be a hard working woman but she has yet to prove herself. She knows nothing on foreign policy and makes vague statements like "what does a vice president do?". A lot of her past work she talks about in her speeches is sort of the half truth and all these "feminist" pro life women supporting her for having 5 babies should really do their research.
I am a Hillary Clinton supporter who is afraid to think of what will happen if Sarah Palin is a heart beat from presidency. In short, being a woman is not enough. Sorry, Palin. Try in 4 years when you have brushed up on current events and politics.

Sent by Debbie | 2:36 PM | 9-16-2008

I was so surprised that there are people who believe that a woman wouldn't be a good vice president because she should rather raise her children.
I grew up in East Germany, both of my parents worked and me and my sister went to day care when we were 2 months old. I have very fond memories of my childhood with my parents and during our formative years our parents managed to de-brain wash us every day from the ideology that was taught us at school.
I'm now a social competent scientist at one of the top Universities of the states.

Sent by Frauke Greil | 2:36 PM | 9-16-2008

I think that Sara Palin was chosen specifically for her unknown and therefore blank slate. I feel that she and her views,family, son in Iraq and even the Down syndrome baby (double bonus there) is being used as decoration on the political christmas tree to get the vote. She is so totally unqualified for this office, especially as compared to other republican women that this must be the only conclusion as to why she was chosen. Nd now troppergate interview have been denied as well.

Sent by Julie Brunner | 2:37 PM | 9-16-2008

Come on! Two working parents, five children and the Palins never had the need for quality, affordable childcare? From what I can tell from online research, Todd Palin was not a stay-at-home dad until recently. I would like to see the Palin's taxes from past years. This would tell me when Todd Palin became a stay at home dad. Prior to that, they HAD to have used childcare.

The McCain campaign would have us think the Palins are some kind of super-family, never needing anyone beyond grandma to help take care of their large brood despite both parents working. Why do working Republican mothers and fathers believe this? I sure don't believe it. Childcare is not a luxury but a real need for modern families, no matter their political inclinations. Too bad no one is talking about this.

Sent by HenrysMom | 2:37 PM | 9-16-2008

I have heard no mention about Sarah Palin and banning books, even ones she has not read. How can anyone endorse a candidate for VP of the United States who would ban books?

Sent by Karen Regis | 2:37 PM | 9-16-2008

In the primary in voted for Senator Clinton, as Senator Clinton said no way, no how, I would vote for Palin. I believe that she is not read to lead our country. By virtue that she is woman, or has hunting skills is irrelevant to me.

Sent by Nasrin Pearce | 2:38 PM | 9-16-2008

Am I mistaken? Is this election about who is VICE-PRESIDENT?? Is GENDER now a prerequisite for LEADERSHIP?? Whatever happened to voting for the PRESIDENT!!
As for Sarah Palin as potentially president? People THINK DAN QUAYLE!!

Sent by Steve | 2:39 PM | 9-16-2008

I am the mother of 2 autistic boys. I am voting Obama. I feel Palin/McCain will not be special needs advocates. They want to privatize health care and so many families that deal with autism already have issues getting the services they need. I am offened that she would even call herself an advocate for special needs children. And yes I do juf=dge her on parenting. Any woman knows that if your water breaks yout get to the hospital. You do not say a speech then fly a plane from Texas to Alaska. And the worst is she ken her son was already special needs. I think women should have it all. Some of us just have to take a time out to get our kids the best help right away!

Sent by Kate | 2:39 PM | 9-16-2008

To the self-professed liberal who called in saying she would vote for McCain/Palin because she advocates for drilling in the Alaska National Wildlife Refuge, please check your facts before you vote on this issue. The amount of oil this would produce is so minor, it is not worth the risk to the fragile environment up there. We will get much more oil drilling offshore, which Obama supports if the Republicans are also willing to help pass legislation that requires better mileage for vehicles and other energy conservation measures. There are also oil drilling permits that companies already have and are not using here in the lower 48 states. Please check out Obama's energy policy before you vote for McCain/Palin on this issue. Thank you.

Sent by Mary, Tualatin, Oregon | 2:39 PM | 9-16-2008

It is so clear that even the media cannot focus on the fact that this is a Presidential election, and that Barack Obama is running against John McCain for the President of the United States.
Obviously you enjoy a "cat fight" over a true presidential debate of the issues.
Entertaining the feigned respectful conversation among your interviewees masks the fact that there is nothing more to the Sarah Palin story that was not exposed by Charlie Gibson.

Sent by Maureen Hicks | 2:39 PM | 9-16-2008

Ask yourself one question: if Sarah Palin had run for president in the Republican primary, what would have been the result? She would have been laughed out of the race due to her lack of experience politically and lack of interest and engagement with the rest of the US, much less the rest of the world.

John McCain himself stated that being mayor of NYC and governor of a small state (MA) in a primary debate were not qualifications to be president. Somehow, I suspect that governing NYC and MA is more challenging than Wasilla (pop 5000) or Alaska (pop 670k), so going by McCain's own words she can't do the job.

Sarah Palin is not qualified to be VP, she is not qualified to be president, and aside from that her personal story is irrelevant to this election.

Sent by Brian | 2:39 PM | 9-16-2008

I should be Palin's target demographic--a working mom, hockey mom, regular church-goer who lived for years in a town much smaller than Wasilla (1500 people). But, any chance I would vote for McCain completely evaporated when he picked Palin as his nominee.

The issues facing our nation are exceedingly complex and require in-depth knowledge of economics, foreign policy, technology, and so much more. Palin has already proven herself to place ideology over scientific data as governor of Alaska, and we can't afford yet another anti-science administration in Washington. Her knowledge of economics seems limited at best, and her knowledge of international affairs is nonexistent. As governor she has made hiring and firing decisions based on personal loyalties rather than competency. She seems to incorporate the very worst aspects of the current administration, not any kind of change I would want to see in Washington.

Sent by Yvonne Grover | 2:40 PM | 9-16-2008

As a feminist, I find Sarah Palin's placement in a position for which she's not qualified a huge detriment to the feminist movement. We are taking LEAPS backward by supporting a woman merely on the basis of her chromosomes...in a just, have a responsibility to support candidates on the basis of their merits and ability.

Furthermore, some people are basing their decision on who they can most "relate" to in a friendly way - who they'd most "like to have a beer with." Since the chance of having a beer with the President is highly unlikely, how about we focus on electing someone that can heal our fractured nation, on social, economic, and international levels.

Sent by Leigha (pronounced Lee-ah) from Minneapolis | 2:40 PM | 9-16-2008

My concern about Sarah Palin is not that she is a working mother, it is that she is a working mother with several children under 16 she is responsible for.

I am a Democrat who supported Hillary Clinton, and I am also a single mom of 2 elementary aged boys. The difference for me is, I've tried to work with my kids home (as your commentator just stated that she is breast-feeding while taking con calls), and I am, from my own experience, doubtful that she is able to really focus on either of these tasks (work vs. being a mom). She bills herself as a hockey mom, but how many games has she been to this year?

Where are the issues being discussed? All I have heard Palin talk about is drilling - what of education, homeland security or tax reform? I would not vote for a republican just on the abortion issue (I am pro-choice), but I refuse to be told that I need to vote for a woman simply because she is a woman. The issues, and experience are what matter to most American women, regardless of the gender of the candidate in question.

Sent by Kir | 2:41 PM | 9-16-2008

Compare Sarah Palin's recent speeches with earlier ones. Hmmmm, dropping the g's -- goin, runnin (and doing it poorly, I might add). Sounds a little folksy--have we heard this before? She's a manipulator, and not for me.

Sent by Cindi | 2:41 PM | 9-16-2008

Are you kidding me? Sarah Palin is laughing at all of the feminists on whose shoulder's she stands. She is spitting in the face of all of the women who came before to give women reproductive rights, voting rights etc. The republicans should be ashamed of themselves for presentign a woman so ill equipped, with no knowledge of foreign policy, economy and complex issues facing our nation. Just because she says she is ready and confident speaks to her inability to assess her own strengths and weaknesses. She is ill qualified. If motherhood is her platform then she should tend to her family. She is a political bully.

Sent by ellen terry | 2:42 PM | 9-16-2008

The Republican Party was very shrewd in this nomination of Sarah Palin. She has brought life into a lifeless campaign. That being said, she is not someone I could vote for or support. Her views on the issues are completely opposed to mine. She is opposed to sex education in the schools and in favor of teaching creationism. She is opposed to choice. She is in favor of drilling in Anwar and opposed to any type of gun control. I could go on. John McCain talks about reaching across the isle, but the nomination of Sarah Palin will do nothing but further polarize the parties. This will keep us from rationally addressing many issues that desperately need to be addressed. It frightens me to think that she could eventually become President and/or have any influence in who might be appointed to the Supreme Court.

Sent by Mary from Tallahassee, FL | 2:42 PM | 9-16-2008

Seeing our country grow to the point that we have a women as a VP is a great thing, as it is to see a black man running for pres. Remember the issues and what it is that she stands for. If you are a liberal or civil rights activist, think of what it means for you. Perhaps most importantly, that in the next 4-8 years there will likely be at least one and possible up to three supreme court positions coming open. This is a life time position. We are not voting on the direction of the country over then next four years but more likely the next 40 years. This is the opportunity of a life time for social conservatives and if they gain full control of the bench, the face of this country will change substantially.

Sent by ben pritchard | 2:42 PM | 9-16-2008

Even in my Catholic Mass, our priest is silent during the prayer that says: "for us _men_, and for our salvation..." If he can acknowledge that our souls are genderless, then we should all be able to overlook it as well.
My issues do not concern gender other that equal opportunity for all persons. I am a mother of 4, put myself through college, and for most of the time have worked full-time, and am lucky to have a good stable marrige for more than 21 years.
Frankly, McCain's responses on questions at Saddleback Church scared me. Perhaps he was trying to appeal to what he thought the viewers would want to hear...
Obama seems to be a totally-connected family man, which may have a lot to do with his upbringing. And he seems able to understand what a greater cross-section of Americans are going through on a daily basis.
Gender is not an issue with me. Caring, understanding, bridging social divides, bringing not only our economy back from the brink, but lifting our country up in the eyes of the rest of the world, are issues that concern me. A commitment to a greater cause and not pandering for my vote, but brining forth REAL solutions to these and our other problems are what count. Ovaries and testes do not.

Sent by Kitty | 2:43 PM | 9-16-2008

While listening to Beth Twilly (who was insulted often) I must say I was embarrassed and insulted that Ms. Palin was even a consideration as a candidate for VP. Granted, she is reaching out to working women across the nation, raising families and identifying with them. Is that now the criteria we use to choose a commander and chief? She has not proven herself, as Ms Twilly stated, rather she has little experience and there are much bigger issues at stake than being a working mom - like the economy, healthcare, education, the lending crises, the banking and finacnial industries, foriegn relations, and war....to name a few. As a working mother myself, she has not reached out to me, infact she frightens me - the thought of her winning is unfathomable to me, and that so many women in this country don't see through this political ploy! Her choice as a VP candidate insulted me!

Sent by Laurie Kaye | 2:43 PM | 9-16-2008

How about Palin's lack of education (she has BA only & went to several schools to complete) and experience to prepare her for the vice-presidency. Besides completely disagreeing with McCain/Palins' views on just about everything she is not qualified to be VP. I don't want an "average hockey mom" to be in one of the most powerful positions in the world! I think having a woman in this position would be invaluable just not this woman.

Sent by Melody | 2:44 PM | 9-16-2008

What does she stand for? Tell me about the economy, what is she going to do? What about healthcare? What can she contribute to this issue? So what she is a mother of 5, my great-grandmother was a mother of 15 and she worked(along with my great-grandpa)to put them all through college. That is not a reason to vote her as VP. Mccain had a better choices (I.E.Olympia Snowe McKernan senior United States Senator from Maine)if he wanted a woman on the ticket. If women vote just for a woman, then all the hard work that other women have put up with has failed. Just like when people say that black people are going to vote for Obama, because he is black. You vote for the best person to move this country along. No matter what Bill Clinton did before he was elected (affairs, lawsuits), he was still the best man to help turn the country around. We did not vote for him based on his personal life.

Sent by OCB | 2:44 PM | 9-16-2008

Ugh! Why are we even talking about her as "running" for vp? This choice by McCain was just an attempt to get the Hilliary vote and surprise! the double bonus!of the right wing Christian vote.
I am a mother of four and I DO NOT identify with her in any way. I see her as a whiner (not to mention liar) with ulterior motives and I would NOT vote for her (which is not actually possible anyway) unless it was for vp of MaryKay or Avon. I am extremely tired of our society voting for the leaders of our country based on sound bites and image/popularity.

Sent by camp | 2:44 PM | 9-16-2008

As a single mom, I can't relate to Sarah Palin... AT ALL. I can't afford to have five children. I can't afford to let my child play hockey. So, sorry folks as far as I'm concerned this "Hockey Mom" who doesn't speak to my issues is just a bit too elitist for me.
Why is there such hype for this woman who nobody really knows about.
What do we know so far...
She has been fighting an investigation into the fact that she abused her position to get a someone fired for her own personal reasons; Someone who by the way was a champion for abused women. We know that she has lied about being against the "Bridge to Nowhere", and continues to do so. We know her inauguration was sponsored by big oil (BP).
Does any of this bother anyone!!!?
And how does she get away with putting down a man who did community outreach instead of finding ways to cash in on being an ivy league law graduate, stating at the Republican convention, to great applause, that Barak Obamas experience as a community organizer did not require leadership, as if his work helping the quality of life for all people, did nothing of significance .....Why would this not bother anyone..black, white ,male, or female?!!!
Common people let's really listen. And let's do some reading.

Sent by mary | 2:45 PM | 9-16-2008

Gov. Palin's motherhood is neither a plus or minus for me--all of the candidates are parents. I would like to ask those who do find this so compelling, how do they reconcile the McCain/Palin campaign making this a centerpiece, while in her own words, she "didn't blink" when offered the vice presidential place on the ticket.

I've always supported my wife's professional decisions, including passing up job offers and relocating to another state when she got a great job offer. However, always talked about these before acting. Gov. Palin apparently decided to drop the job she already had without giving notice, willing to uproot her family, and exposing her family to extreme scrutiny without "blinking". If she is willing to do that to her husband and children, what else is she willing and ready to do to the rest of our families? None of this strikes me as the actions of a "real" person, but of yet another ambitious politician, gender not withstanding.

Sent by Doug Ross | 2:46 PM | 9-16-2008

It distresses me that women (who have always been a moral compass for this country), are being swayed by the obvious pandering of the Republicans so easily. Sarah Palin's world view seems so narrow; I guess that must be true of many under 50 women who were commenting on your show. I hope these younger women are planning to sign their young children up for the military, as both Palin and McCain seem so set on military action for the future. It saddens me that women for Palin (and Palin included), no longer are able to view the nation's women's and children's problems as their own. We have truly reached a turning point in our history.

Sent by jackie page | 2:46 PM | 9-16-2008

I am so happy to read the other comments here in light of the viewpoints expressed on the air. I too am completely horrified at the specter of Sarah Palin being our VP. I'm a 57-yr.-old white woman and my evaluation stems from her mean-spirited,lying sarcasm at the convention (is this a model for our daughters?), her continually lying about the bridge, her belief that a woman should be denied choices in her pregnancy, her backing away from the Trooper-gate investigation and now reading about her croney-ism and secrecy in governing (Bush-Cheney anyone??)- these have me shaking my head that ANYONE could be for this woman!!!! Neil, with your choice of guests and lack of questioning, I'm now more and more questioning how often I should tune into your program....

Sent by Natasha | 2:46 PM | 9-16-2008

How does a VP at this stage in the race refuse to "meet the press"? Why aren't all these Palin supporters unnerved by a VP who is supposed to be responsible for meeting with people like Putin, Jong Il, Ahmedinaj-whatever, but unable to handle Campbell Brown? Is she going to give world leaders pre-written speeches when it's time to negotiate nuclear programs, sanctions, policies? Or maybe her story is going to resonate with all the world leaders and they will just LIKE her and not give her a hard time. I think it's ridiculous to want to vote for her because she's a woman you can relate to. I also think it's typical of people who don't understand that America has a tenuous hold on its standing in the world OUTSIDE of America. We don't need someone who only resonates with us in office, we need someone who can resonate with us AND the rest of the world. McCain/Palin? Yeah, right.

Sent by Tracie | 2:48 PM | 9-16-2008

McCain is USING Palin for his own means--he only cares about winning the election! He NEVER would have chosen her if she were a man! Come on, people, wake up! She is so NOT qualified, it's not even funny. And it is NOT "sexist" to question her qualifications! If she were a man with so little experience, she would be subjected to brutal scrutiny-- she should want and expect EQUAL treatment! Where was all of this "indignant" reaction to supposed sexism when Hillary was dealing with it in the primaries?? And who cares if Palin's "the everywoman"? We don't need a potential future President who is a "working Mom" from a state that shares FEW of the issues that the rest of the continental U.S. deals with. She doesn't even believe that evolution should be taught in public schools--to me, a college Biology professor, this was my biggest turn-off to her. If she has that level of ignorance, and also thinks that "creationism" can somehow be taught alongside REAL science in PUBLIC schools, then I certainly wouldn't want her "a heartbeat away from the Presidency"!! Women, don't be fooled by McCain's shrewd politics: we should all be offended that he is only using Palin as a "means to an end."

Sent by Jennifer Siegert | 2:48 PM | 9-16-2008

I am horrified that this country would even consider electing this woman to be a heartbeat away from the presidency. McCain could have chosen from among many qualified women (I still wouldn't have voted for him/them) and chose instead to insult our country by suggesting that she is a viable candidate.

Sent by Robin Leach | 2:49 PM | 9-16-2008

I feel insulted that a woman like Sarah Palin is representing us. She has guts but not brains to be a vicepresident.She needs some education in foreign affairs, economics etc. I was supporter of Hillary and I will be vote for Obama.

Sent by hedi delor | 2:50 PM | 9-16-2008

I just wanted to respond to a comment made by one of the guests on the show. She stated that Sarah Palin is a "real and genuine" candidate. She went on to extol the virtues of being real and genuine. Let's be clear, Sarah Palin is real and genuine in that she is "like us." Well, not me, but she's the kind of person you want to hang out with (well, I don't want to spend time with her). Plainly stated, she's as stupid as you and I are. When did "folksy" and "real" become credentials to hold one of the most powerful positions in the free world? Sarah went to five schools before obtaining an undergraduate degree. This is a problem! What sort of graduate degree(s) does she hold? None, you say? This is a problem! Running this country should be a job given back to smart people. We have had 8 years of genuine, mediocre, dumb government rule. Perhaps I've stumbled onto something. Kaplan should devise an aptitude test for government office.

Sent by Lisa Pope | 2:50 PM | 9-16-2008

I like shooting, I like hunting and fishing, I admire any parent(s) that can successfully raise five children.

But I like the freedom to choose, I like fiscal responsibility and I hate liars. That knocks the McCain-Palin ticket completely off my radar. And hearing the listeners and reading these posts, where people are voting on totally irrelevant attributes and issues puts fear into my heart. God help this country.

Sent by Jessaca | 2:52 PM | 9-16-2008

When one of your guests commented on Sarah Palin's genuine personality and strong character, I would ask "Doesn't telling the truth define someone who is genuine and has a high moral character?" In that case, Sarah Palin is in question as she continues to lie about her position on the Alaskan "Bridge to No where". She was in FAVOR of it until she realized it was not in her political best interest. Showing she in TRULY interested in reforming political ear marks. AND as for the being a fiscal conservative, an article in this week's TIME magazine highlights the REALITY of the Alaskan people's lives under her administration as one with the highest state taxes in the country and one where each individual Alaskan receives more Federal Tax dollars per capita than an other state in the union. How does this match what she is SAYING about reforming government?

Sent by Tricia Biagi, Louisville | 2:52 PM | 9-16-2008

Sara Palin may be a feminist in that she has been allowed to choose her own lifestyle. However, she scares the hell out of me with her religious overtones, anti-gay and pro-life views. I'm thrilled to see a woman on the ticket but I just wish it was someone I could and would support. For this feminist, voting for a woman will have to come at a later date.

Sent by Vicki | 2:55 PM | 9-16-2008

I am a 25 year old female Presbyterian minister in training, and I am not impressed with Ms. Sarah Palin. While I appreciate her willingness to be feminine in a "man's world" I am horrified by the peppy way in which she pulls her party line. To her I say, "thanks but no thanks." I remain an ardent Obama supporter.

Marcie, Wynnewood Pa.

Sent by marcie brozyna | 2:57 PM | 9-16-2008

Sarah Palin is a female version of Gov. George W. Bush in terms of experience and philosophy. If folksiness and "being a fresh face" is more important than serious issues and a candidate's ability to function well in the role of president, she will become the next vice president (with the help of misguided "feminists").

Sent by Annie | 2:58 PM | 9-16-2008

As others have said it boggles my mind as to why people think they need to vote for "someone just like me"!! I want someone who knows much more than me! Do people realize that we are a world power and having knowledge about other countries and cultures is a big part of the job. How can one make informed decisions if you have no experience beyond the borders of the USA.
I thought we had moved beyond the having it all and the supermom phase of feminism--because we found out that it is not possible to do it all SIMULTANEOUSLY. I would have more respect for Palin if her family was not front and center in this campaign--because as VP she needs to be on the job 24/7. Palin is using her family to sell her as McCain's choice. Look at Obama--it was reported that he was at home for only one week all last year with his kids.
Look at her views on science education which points out a lack of rational thought that science requires-for creationism against evolution.
also too much talk about God's influence.
Unfortunately pitching to the lowest common denominator seems to work in this country. many people seem to be impressed by her confidence even though she demonstrates no "real" knowledge of the broader issues that the office of VP covers. She seems brash in her decision making without thoughtfully thinking through the consequences--exactly like George Bush and look where that has got us!!

And she repeated the falsehood that invading Iraq and 9/11 are related in her son's unit Iraq deployment--that is FALSE info--but I bet she doesn't know that they are not related at all.

Everything about her choice as VP is ONLY because she is a woman--how depressing --someone even less qualified than George Bush.

Sent by Beth Gibb | 3:01 PM | 9-16-2008

I am confused by a vague term that I keep hearing: people referring to Palin as a "real person". What makes someone a "real person", why are these characteristics important for the vice president, and why aren't any of the other candidates "real"? If "real" is a reference to her truthfulness, it seems the more I learn about her from independent sources (factcheck and others), the more I lies I discover she told. If that is a reference to her being an "everywoman", I don't see how that supports her case for VP. As Amie says, if I want to go for drinks, I will probably take a peer. My leaders should be better educated, more experienced, more knowledgeable, and better thinkers than me.

I also do not hold Palin as a good role model for women and girls. She was not selected for being the best-qualified candidate. Her executive experience is limited and not applicable: Alaska's oil production created enough tax money that no taxes needed to be levied on individuals or property. No other state can say that, and neither can the federal government. If she were a man, her resume would not have garnered her the VP pick. Getting a job because you are female is not the example I want to follow, nor one I would want my children to follow.

A very dismal conclusion results from her selection: McCain, a man I would gladly have supported in 2000 and 2004, is doing what he can to win, regardless of if it is what best benefits the country. He needs the support of women and Christian fundamentalists. I hope such a cheap (and reckless) ploy to women is not successful.

Sent by Meg, Philadelphia | 3:02 PM | 9-16-2008

Is this panel the best the producers could come up with for this topic? I felt frustrated by the totally subjective and superficial dialogue by all guests. Not one of them made any significant contribution to the debate. And besides Neal Conan questioning the caller's statement about McCain now being pro-drilling in Alaska, there was little significant challeng to anything anyone said. Is it because it was a show related to issue(s) of women that no serious dialogue occured (i.e, was not taken seriusly), or is this what TOTN is like now (fluffy, subjective, uncritical)? I get more substantial debate from family and friends at the dinner table or at coffee.

Sent by Maeve | 3:04 PM | 9-16-2008

I was quite taken back by the comment made by one of the guest towards the end of the program regarding Palin's appeal to minority women. The response that an Palin should only be able to reach out to other white women with similar backgrounds is unacceptable. As and a candidate seeking elective office Ms. Palin needs to make it her mission to understand the needs and concerns of all Americans. Imagine an Obama supporter stating that Obama is only going to reach out to those with a similar background because he can't be all things to all people. How Riduculous. Obama is in fact working very hard to win the working class vote and appeal to people who on appearances have nothing in common with him. We want to elect a President and Vice President who try to reach out to every American!


Sent by Melissa | 3:08 PM | 9-16-2008

ben: As a fellow guy, I respectfully disagree that this is "the opportunity of a life time." Are you saying that if women don't support McCain/Palin they will most likely never see another female presidential candidate in the foreseeable future? Sounds like coercion by emotional blackmail to me. Hillary Clinton is still out there, and I have no doubt she has her eye on 2012.

Sent by George | 3:08 PM | 9-16-2008

s a Hillary Democrat, I am very much in favor of Sarah Palin. Even though she has SOME views that are to the right of mine, she has clearly and emphatically stated she will not be forcing HER views as policies and that she respects the views of others.

Her Resume trumps Obama in every way. Here is a comparison side by side.


Further, according to Insurance actuarial charts, Senator McCain has only a 20% chance of dying while in office.

Sarah Palin is smart, has a proven record of taking on corruption, and her juggling of family, campaign and Gbubernatorial experince PROVES she has a quick learning curve.

Most improtantly she has a strength of character, is open and has interigity. The Greeks use to say the Health of a State is only as good as the upright Character of its leaders. Put another way, it is idiotic to build a house on quicksand. Without a good and trustworthy character, you are infact building on quicksand.

I say Go Sarah GO

Sent by Professor Nellie Stefanik | 3:10 PM | 9-16-2008

Regarding Sarah Palin:Gloria Steinem stated it perfectly in her Los Angeles Times editorial a week ago. She represents what femisism stands for only in that she has access to the opportunity to be a Vice Presential candidate. This access to a job women weren't considered for in the past is a good thing. That she has the right to hold what beliefs she does, is of course her right also. Even if she is wrong in most of them, in my opionion. The other probably more important gains for women that were needed outcomes of feminism, she is against. A women's control over decisions about her own body. If a women, or girl were a victim of rape, or incest. Ms. Palin, excuse me, Mrs. Palin, would support this women to be forced to carry a child conceived in this way to full term. Sadly, she is the unapealing product of what the Republican party has become, a seamless blend of church combinded with state. She like George Bush has convictions, but in her case without religion, and the privileged upbringing. As I said before, she has the right to be wrong, so does John McCain. Sadly, America had the right to be wrong twice, electing (if not honestly the first time) George Bush. Of course these were not situations due to my vote. Obama is not a saviour, but at this time, he provides some hope to unhook from the Republican train wreck, and perhaps get back to where we were when Bill Clinton left office.

Sent by Clarice Campbell-Mason | 3:10 PM | 9-16-2008

What does Palin stand for? We all are well versed on the infamous "Bridge to No Where" but does that make her a true reformist? Obama has clearly reformed the state of Illinois by giving all children in the state health care....but Sarah can win a crowd over time and time again by saying "I told congress thanks but no thanks, if we want a bridge in Alaska we'll build it ourselves." But then takes the earmark money and spends it on other Alaskan issues. Who are the people that are really voting for her? I am an intelligent woman and I am not buying what she is selling. This nation needs to wake up and realize they all are being buffaloed by this woman. She is just a shining new toy being dangled in front of millions of people who just won't snap out of it. What is seriously wrong with this country? Race should not be the issue as well as sex! I did not vote for Hillary Clinton because I did not think she was a strong person overall. Obama is the change this country, this world needs. In the recent broadcast one of the guest mentioned that liberalist would vote for Palin because she smoked pot, who cares, is that why Bush was elected by crazy people because he did lines of coke? What's wrong with you people that are blindsided by these phonies who just want the fame and glory, not your intentions? I am sure that Obama is not perfect, but he has groomed himself to get this far, he was not a quick choice to make in to the White House. America needs to get off the Zoloft and seriously wake up before it's too late. Everyone that is for Palin is more worried about what she's wearing then her lies she has already put out there about the earmarks. I don't know what else to say to Americans out there, just really think about your economical state, think about alternatives to oil so your kids, grandkids, etc. can live on this planet a little longer, think about the state of this world that this past administration has destroyed in the last eight years; it's not about the American people in this election, it's about every single living being on this planet. You all want change vote for Obama. He will get us out of this mess, and honestly Palin is just a pretty little thing to get the votes and as soon as she has the VP title she will not have any say, maybe in her home state, but as far as the rest of this nation McCain's lobbyist will take over and we will all be in a world of trouble. THINK BEFORE YOU VOTE FOR MCCAIN/PALIN!!!!

Sent by Jessica | 3:12 PM | 9-16-2008

I cannot vote for McCain/Palin because I do not "resonate" or agree with Republican political agendas and stances on critical issues which affect the future policies and actions of the United States in this deeply anxious world. My lack of personal resonance with the Republican ticket has not changed nor been swayed otherwise because of the gender, experience or character of either Palin or McCain. I find Palin interesting, as do many others---but in no way will the McCain/Palin ticket get my vote.

Sent by Elise in Ohio | 3:14 PM | 9-16-2008

So much for "Country First"...John Mccain's choice of Sarah Palin for VP is one of the most cynical and political decisions his campaign could have made. He was convinced by his handlers to chose her over more seasoned VP contenders in order to sew up the Republican base, the Evangelicals/pro-life contingent and, unbelievably, Hillary supporters. She is charasmatic and bright; but for Palin to pretend to be qualified to be the leader of the Free World (if need be) is ridiculous. For god sakes, she asserted that being able to see Russia from Alaska somehow makes her an international player!! Her presidential running mate is a 72 year old 4-time melanoma survivor. Do the math, and really think, do you want Sarah Palin running our country??

Sent by CA Breslin | 3:14 PM | 9-16-2008

I understand Sarah Palin is capturing people's interest because she's new to the scene and because she's a woman. Let's not let that cloud our judgement, though. She may be very nice and people may identify with her as a person, that's fine. But the "I feel like she's someone I could have a beer/coffee with" argument is precisely how we wound up with G.W. Bush...TWICE!! It's not the basis for sound decision-making on who we should elect as president/vice president. Sarah Palin, as late as July (on CNBC), said she didn't know what the vice president's duties are. Of greater concern is the fact she has comfortably and repeatedly spoken (and I'll be nice here) inaccuracies on almost a daily basis. For example, her standard "thanks but no thanks" to the Bridge to Nowhere comments. It's been WIDELY reported now that she was for the bridge while running for governor and only came out against is after being elected when political sentiment (including the U.S. Congress) turned against the project. Sounds more like people told Palin "thanks, but no thanks." Her claim that she's an expert on energy policy because she manages a state that controls 20% of the U.S. oil and gas supply? Not true. The Energy Information Administration indicates that Alaska ranks 9th as a provider of oil and gas, supplying only 3.5% of the U.S. total. How about her international experience where she included Iraq and Ireland among the places she's traveled. Wrong again. The Alaska National Guard, with who she was traveling, said emphatically that she never entered Iraq and that her visit to Ireland was a re-fueling stop! John McCain said she's eliminated a half billion dollars in earmarks and hasn't asked for any as governor. Whoops. Palin has requested nearly $200 million in earmarks as governor. There's plenty more evidence of her penchant for re-creating history, but I hope I'm making the point that, outside wholly obvious information, the information she's presenting to the public as political "achievements" have been almost universally false, or dramatically distorted. If the only way she's able to impress people is to completely fictionalize what she's done in her political positions, what difference does it make if she's a woman or not? Who cares how nice or "real" she is if she can't be straight with the American people. She may be able to fool people out on the campaign trail, but you can't fake it once you're in office. We certainly should have learned THAT over the past 8 years!
Finally, I think anyone who's considering voting for the McCain-Palin ticket really needs to think long and hard about how capable Sarah Palin is to function as president of the United States, should that become necessary. She has less than 2 years tenure as governor of Alaska, not exactly a state representative of the country as a whole. Beyond that, she has only slightly more experience as mayor of a town of about 6,000 (at the time she presided). Who can honestly believe that she has demonstrated in the slightest fashion that she is ready to take on what is arguably the most powerful political position in the world?! And, you have to question the judgement of John McCain, who has said that the #1 responsibility of the president is the role of commander-in-chief. Of ALL the people he knows and has worked with in his decades of service, he decided that Sarah Palin is the person best suited to that HUGE responsibility, should the situation arise. There is NO WAY. If nothing else makes clear the fact that the choice of Sarah Palin was one of politics and appearance, that fact alone should do it.
The role of vice president is far more substantive and important than it once was. That Sarah Palin is a woman should not be of greater importance than the fact she is not even remotely qualified to take represent the United States on the national and international stage.
Please, voters of America, use your heads this time.

Sent by Mark | 3:15 PM | 9-16-2008

Sarah Palin did not even endorse John McCain before she became "ticket-worthy". They believe in different stuff, and really cannot represent a unified platform. The VP choice is dismal,dispiriting politic and women- and even men - should not be taken in.

Sent by jill collen | 3:20 PM | 9-16-2008

Thanks for this opportunity today. I am very proud to be a Woman and a Democrat. I am very proud of the accomplishments of Governor Palin as a woman. I am ,however, not Impressed by Gov. Palin. I do believe that in Our Nation, we have a strong tendency to be mesmerized by appearance versus the depth of the individual's character. Governor Palin has been thrust into the American Spot Light not necessarily of her own free-will but because Our Nation has forgotten that Senator John McCain(elderly as he may be), is the Republican Presidential Nominee. Gov. Palin has danced and pranced around the issues when given the opportunities to speak from the heart and address the issues that Our Families, Our Gender and Our Nation must confront immediately. We should not be so concerned about Gov. Palin's ability or inability to "Have It All": Wife, Mother, Grandmother and VP Nominee. Gov Palin has obviously been blessed with a husband or "Dude" who fares better as the Care-giver at home while she is the obvious "Provider". I don't have a problem with her being out of the house nor do I care that she is apparently the "womb-provider" in the relationship. We all choose our mates to compliment our personalities or our short-comings. She has the right spouse for her personality traits. In most appearances by Gov. Palin, she does not appear to be what most of us deem "the Motherly-Type". She is rarely seen in the role we generally see a mother of a 4 month old child. Rarely touches or cuddles the child publicly. When she did hold the child during her acceptance of the VP nomination, she appeared more awkward than her 5 or 7 year old daughter at caring for the child. Each family member, has an assigned responsibility to assist in the care of this special child. A gift from God. In our society, we are truly a people of double standards. I do Believe with my entire being that if, Senator Obama had a 17 year old, unwed, pregnant daughter, our nation would be in an uproar. I can only imagine how this nation would respond should the Obama Household announce that Mrs. Obama was an expectant mom during this bid for the White House. Whew!!! What an attack would we Democrats have on our candidate. None the less,the matter that Gov. Palin is faced with in her household, would not be a private family matter were this going on in the African-American Obama household. The Repblicans are parading the young expectant parents around as if they were already married with the house, the mini van, the dog and the white pickett fence. It is amazing how judgmental we become when you factor in race (african-american) and unwed teen pregnancy. Enough on that! Perhaps we can move this campaign in the direction it should go when we begin to allow the candidates to address the issues and the ailments of this Nation. God Bless!


Sent by Norma M. Tucker | 3:21 PM | 9-16-2008

The last couple weeks have made me a nervous wreck. I've turned into a political junkie, constantly watching the news and reading articles. Watching this 'Palin effect' has had me scared as hell.

I just want to say I feel ecstatic reading these comments!

Thank God the majority of people smart enough to listen to NPR instead of pop radio and active enough to write in seem to AGREE that we don't need Palin as the "hometown GAL" in the office of VP (GAL=Great American Liability).

God bless America! Whoo hoo!!!!! :)

Sent by Tracie | 3:22 PM | 9-16-2008

One of the commentators said "the most important factor in this election is transparency. Sarah Palin put the state's checkbook online. Bringing that to Washington is what we need." Maybe she was referring to how Barrack Obama sponsored legislation o put the government's checkbook online... which apparently neither Sarah or her supports know...

Sent by Rich Greenwood | 3:23 PM | 9-16-2008

When John McCain nominated Palin for VP I was at once shocked and furious. He must think so little of women that he thinks we are shallow enough to support any female, qualified or NOT, that he might support. Get real. If this is an example of McCain's decision making abilities, we should all run the other way. He is certainly putting politics ahead of the country and his irresponsible decision says it all.
I have raised a disabled child and can tell you first hand, it isn't easy, not that any child is. It takes more time than most and parent(s) that are there to support them all. While I would appreciate attention being paid to the issues of services for the disabled, I can't believe she will lead the way. It doesn't fit with anything else I have been able to learn about her.

I am a 62 year-old white female, politically independent, and will support Obama. The McCain campaign tactics are going to get me out actively support Obama's candidacy, something I've never done before. McCain/Palin would be a disaster.

Sent by Lynn in NH | 3:23 PM | 9-16-2008

Palin has energized me for the first time in many years. I see in Palin someone who reflects me in many ways. I am a woman who considers herself a feminist, a working mother, AND a caregiver to my family. It is rare that a woman running for office reflects my thoughts and beliefs like Palin does. Now all of a sudden I find that I cannot call myself a feminist because I do not hold to the same political agenda as the N.O.W. or other left leaning groups (NPR story this morning confirmed the N.O.W. support of Obama and not Palin based on polical views, not sex). I thought women's rights were meant to give woman the right to choose what is best for them and their families based on their gifts and abilities rather than being limited by gender expectations. Now it seems to be a feminist I must agree with a particular political agenda. Do we need to redefine what it means to be in favor of woman's rights, all woman's rights, whether they offend my or your sensibilities? Palin will resonate with many people this election that have rarely felt they were represented (like me). She will also offend other's because they have a differing political view. I think that is what is energizing this election. There is true choice with divergent views, there is race and gender. All of it exciting. May the best person win without any of the baggage listed above!

Sent by Jill Smith | 3:29 PM | 9-16-2008

My opinion of John McCain changed after the Republican Convention. He went from war hero and maverick to a political cynic with his appointment of S. Pallin. How could he put county first, by choosing someone with no political experience or knowledge, (based on the Gibson interview)? Were their no qualified Republicans? This is after all the appointment of the Vice President and possibly the president.

McCain achieved what he wanted by appointing an total unknown..media attention. Beyond the Gibson interview S. Palins' own admission that she didn't know what the Vice President did is very disturbing. This during a time when the Vice-President has more power than ever. (Your last show highlighted this.) Doesn't S. Palin read the papers? The new Cheny power has been written about in newspapers, magazines and highlighted in other media coverage long before this.

To address your a panelist, who stated S. Palins' social platform didn't agree with hers, but she liked S. Palin for other issues. I ask what issues?

I feel pretty strongly about basic need issues like the right to choose medical procedures and the right to receive equal pay.

Beyond social issues what is there: national security? S. Palin does not know what the Bush Doctrine is, or that we were not attacked by Iraq. (Again, doesn't she read the papers?) She is the Republican Governor of the state closest to Russia. She must be more informed about national security policy than most governors.

I didn't really understand the real person comment. After all aren't we all real people. What makes her more "real" than Barack Obama, Joe Biden or John McCain? Do you mean she is more real because she is a mom? Barack and Joe and John are dads. Or is it that she worked hard to get where she is. I believe the other candidates worked hard as well.

I will not vote for McCain/Palin ticket. McCain apparently has no conscious and S. Palin brings no credentials to the job. I hope other Americans can see through the smoke and mirrors of this ticket for all our sakes.

I urge all Americans to listen to the debates.

Sent by Rose from Illinois | 3:32 PM | 9-16-2008

It is as heartening to read this blog as it had been disheartening listening to the Palin and women segment on Talk of the Nation. What a poor excuse for an unbiased discussion. Two for Palin, one against. How about a panelist that is white and small town like Palin who is against her for VP. That would be me. And I can tell you, I know many more women and men who share this view. Your show made it sound as if the only women not enamored of Palin are women of color, as if they should feel this way only because of their ethnicity. Let's stick with the facts and the issues instead of personal feelings. Lets talk about the Republican campaign's focus on lies and half-truths. That is the job of media in an election campaign. Let's talk about how drilling for oil is not going to give us independence. It--if it even exists in significant quantities--would not even be available for 10 years. Guess what--it would go on the international market just like OPEC's I like Obama's focus on alternative energy plans. I am completely disgusted with the way the show was put together today and with Neil Conan's failure to ask tough questions. Is this just a fluffy opinion show? Or is there a debate going on? Is Mr. Conan afraid to take control and possibly offend a splinter group of women?

Sent by Amy, Michigan | 3:38 PM | 9-16-2008

Prof. Stefanik, please see http://www.nytimes.com/2008/09/14/us/politics/14palin.html?em=&pagewanted=all. It is apparent what the foundation of a Palin administration would be, and I'd prefer the quicksand.

Re. the chart, please forgive the cynicism, but I question the credibility of and serious thought behind a chart that includes "Coolest thing about Spouse" as a category. I also do not agree with the conclusion you have drawn from it.

Sent by Meg, atty., Philadelphia | 3:46 PM | 9-16-2008

35-year-old stay-at-home "red state" Mom here. The only thing Palin has inspired me to do is to vote for Obama. I don't identify with her at all. I don't care about her gender - her views and her policies (like abstainance-only sex ed, for example)and her ignorance about the seriousness of this job are dangerous. I don't want to live in a theocracy. And I don't care how "real" some people think she is - she has much less in common with most of us than the Republican spin machine would have us think.

Sent by Liv from NC | 3:51 PM | 9-16-2008

A couple of points that came to mind while listening earlier: One of the speakers said we never asked Joe Biden who watched his kids but Sara Palin was asked. Maybe that is because she has only been on the national stage for all of three weeks now!!! Obama, Biden and McCain have gone through the primary process, as well as senate elections. There is nothing we don't know about them. But there is plenty we don't know about Sara Palin.

I also want to know what these supporters have learned about Sarah Palin in the last three weeks that suddenly make John McCain an acceptable presidential candidate. If he dropped dead the day after the inauguration, what depth of experience, relationships and judgment have to call on not only to be president but to select a cabinet, vice president etc??

Lastly I don't have children and I am getting tired of people saying that her status as a breeder gives her knowledge of what REAL PEOPLE are experiencing. Am I not a real person??!!

Sent by Mary Shea | 3:52 PM | 9-16-2008

I'm a little confused. Let me see if I have this straight.....

If you grow up in Hawaii, raised by your grandparents, you're 'exotic, different.' OBAMA

Grow up in Alaska eating mooseburgers, a quintessential American story. PALIN

If your name is Barack you're a radical, unpatriotic Muslim. OBAMA

Name your kids Willow, Trig and Track, you're a maverick. PALIN

Graduate from Harvard law School and you are unstable. OBAMA

Attend 5 different small colleges before graduating, you're well grounded. PALIN

If you spend 3 years as a brilliant community organizer, become the first black President of the Harvard Law Review, create a voter registration drive that registers 150,000 new voters, spend 12 years as a Constitutional Law professor, spend 8 years as a State Senator representing a district with over 750,000 people, become chairman of the state Senate's Health and Human Services committee, spend 4 years in the United States Senate representing a state of 13 million people while sponsoring 131 bills and serving on theForeign Affairs, Environment and Public Works and Veteran's Affairs committees, you don't have any real leadership experience. OBAMA

If your total resume is: local weather girl, 4 years on the city council and 6 years as the mayor of a town with less than 7,000 people, 20 months as the governor of a state with only 650,000 people, then you're qualified to become the country's second highest ranking executive. PALIN

If you have been married to the same woman for 19 years while raising 2 beautiful daughters, all within Protestant churches, you're not a real Christian. OBAMA

If you cheated on your first wife with a rich heiress, and left your disfigured wife and married the heiress the next month, you're a Christian. MCCAIN

If you teach responsible, age appropriate sex education, including protection from predators and the proper use of birth control, you are eroding the fiber of society. OBAMA

If , while governor, you staunchly advocate abstinence only, with no other option in sex
education in your state's school system while your unwed teen daughter ends up pregnant , you're very responsible. PALIN

If your wife is a Harvard graduate laywer who gave up a position in a
prestigious law firm to work for the betterment of her inner city community,
then gave that up to raise a family, your family's values don't represent America's. OBAMA

If you're husband is nicknamed 'First Dude', with at least one DWI
conviction and no college education, who didn't register to vote until age 25 and
once was a member of a group that advocated the secession of Alaska
from the USA, your family is extremely admirable. PALIN

OK, much clearer now! Duh....go McCain/Palin!

Sent by Tracie | 3:53 PM | 9-16-2008

I wish we could get past gender and race and simply judge on the issues. Personally, I could care less if Sarah Palin had ten kids or none. What I am concerned about is her competence and whether she is ready to be vice president of our country. There is too much we don't know about Gov. Palin's past and fortunately more information is being made public. To me, it is more than terrifying to think she could be vice president and maybe president in the future. Obama and Biden hold our only hope for turning our country around.

Sent by nancy eastman | 3:56 PM | 9-16-2008

As far as I can see, Sarah Palin is LESS qualified to serve as a national leader because she has worked less hard than any of the other three to become leader - much less hard. She has glided onto the scene out of nowhere, so no wonder she looks like a fresh face: she's not exhausted from campaigning, folks.

If she had run for national office on her own qualifications and positions, she would not be in this position now - she would have had to defend those credentials, and much more about her would be known than is known by the general public. It is in no way helping the cause of women in politics to plunk this previously unknown woman down in the middle of a tight race - women need to run fair races, not be plucked Cinderella-like (well, maybe American Idol-like) from the ranks of the "real people."

Anyway, I find her absolutely a gimmick candidate from the far right, and I am personally insulted that she might scoop up any unhappy Hillary Clinton supporters.

Sent by Jean McAneny | 4:01 PM | 9-16-2008

I was really disappointed in todays show about Sarah Palin.Where were the intellegent women with well formed and reasoned opinions about the matter. For the most part, the opinions expressed were based upon emotion and not reason. For those who have not seen David Brooks' editorial in the NYT today, I recommend it. He is struck, as was I, that she glories in the fact that she is not reflective, but "doesn't blink" when she makes a decision. Haven't we had enough of that in the past eight years? I don't want to be governed by someone's gut but by their head. Prudence, says Brooks, that is what we need in a leader. Prudence is the product of thought and experience, two of Sarah Palin's short suits.
Is Sarah Palin the most qualified Republican woman to be vice president? God help us if she is.
And what does her selection tell us about the judgment of John McCain. I don't know about you, but it gives me no confidence in his ability to govern.
Sarah Palin was a cynical move by the McCain campaign, which, unfortunately seems to have worked.

Sent by Susanne | 4:04 PM | 9-16-2008

I would like to believe that most women voters vote on issues important to them. As a woman, I would ask other women to cast their vote (not just for ourselves) but for the next generation of young women.
It was sad to hear one of the panelists say that Sara Palin did not have to be attractive to minority women as she couldn't please everyone. Comments like that just prove to further alienate issues important to minority women. It also helps me to cement the notion that the strategy of the McCain campaign in picking Palin was to be more attractive to "white working class women" instead of American women as a whole.

Sent by Moki Evans, San Francisco, California | 4:05 PM | 9-16-2008

can the guest PLEASE stop equating Sarah Palin's family situation to Nancy Pelosi. Yes, they both have five children, but Pelosi is a grandmother. I believe her youngest child graduated college twenty yesrs ago. This is another intentionally misleading deflection of facts, regardsless of whether Palin's family responsibilities should or should not be an issue

Sent by robert lear | 4:17 PM | 9-16-2008

It is sad how many women that called in are picking her just because she is a woman. Even feminists. That is like voting for Obama because he is black. I must say that I am heartened by the comments in the blog. The majority of the blog comments are based on issues not gender.

Would feminists vote for Palin if she was a man with the same views. I don't think so.

So let's stop talking about lipstick, hockey and kids. And stick to the issues.

Sent by Mike in Chicago | 4:23 PM | 9-16-2008

She does not represent me as a woman, mother, working mother or citizen. She has failed to lead her family with her insistence in abstenence only and promotes the Iraq war as "God's war...as if she has a direct line. As a single mother who raised three children, went to college & law school, without child support, she cannot begin to know what my life was like. I am a Republican and insulted by this pandering to me as a thinking woman.

Sent by Barbara Baskerville | 4:26 PM | 9-16-2008

Please ask the most important question that you seem to be avoiding, "What qualifies her to be Vice-President of the United States"? Please, someone tell me why they think she's qualified?

Sent by DAN RAKOSNIK | 4:28 PM | 9-16-2008

Sarah Palin has set feminism back about three decades. I believe that the male orchestrators of this charade are laughing their - - off at the women who buy into the propaganda of the lipsticked hockey mom.

Good for her, juggling professional and home lives; but that ability doesn't embody feminism. It's not just about balancing - it's about supporting women's issues and rights. It's about having the legally sanctioned ability to earn as much, vote beside, fight with, and stand up against and with our male counterparts. It's about, among other things, equal access to things like choice. In these areas, Sarah Palin is a failure for women.

Sure, if Sarah Palin somehow ends up in the VP job, you can legitimately tell your daughters "you can do anything!" When, though, did feminism abandon the idea that the way to earn the right to do anything was through perseverance, work, and god forbid, formal education! Our president should be a role model of integrity, ethical behavior, intelligence, aptitude, and honesty. In addition to failing as a feminist, Sarah Palin fails in these areas.

Sent by E Copeland | 4:28 PM | 9-16-2008

One of the women on the show takes offense that Sarah Palin is questioned about doing the job with small children, and says "Nancy Pelosi wasn't asked that question. Joe Biden wasn't." Nancy Pelosi is a GRANDMOTHER. Joe Biden doesn't have small children either. The question's not important with them.

I am so tired of right wingers, women and men, trying to tell us what's best for all of us. Her support for right wing causes, her overuse of religion (and I go to church every Sunday) and her LACK OF EXPERIENCE are glaring issues for me. Alaska has a NEGATIVE income tax. What does she know about the economy in the LOWER 48? Please. Do you really want THIS person at the red phone if John McCain should not wake up on January 21???? I don't.

Sent by L Taylor | 4:29 PM | 9-16-2008

Tracie... That was a great recap...

Sent by Maricella | 4:32 PM | 9-16-2008

Sarah Palins' gender has nothing to do with her qualifications to lead the USA should a Vice President be required to fill that position. Many women could accomplish similar deeds given the support of husband and family that she has and therefore see nothing special about her accomplishments. I do not think she can handle the job. I agree with your caller regarding the Avon order.

Sent by Barbara Hallbourg | 4:33 PM | 9-16-2008

Two questions for Beth Tweddle:
1) What are the benefits of having a "real" (ordinary) person in the white house. We've had real and ordinary for the last eight years and look where we are. It seems to be I want someone EXTRAORDINARY to attend the duties of the president.
2) What makes her "real"? The fact that she has managed a political career and raised a family at the same time? I'm sure most, if not all, women politicians in Washington share the same experience. Do you think Hilary Clinton is not real because she only had one, as opposed to five, children?

Sent by Marie Vazquez | 4:36 PM | 9-16-2008

Palin in the office would be a horrifying thought! Unfortunately, she's only on the ticket because of her gender and that is truly a pathetic attempt at trying to catch a few additional votes. Palin is TOO conservative for a nation that needs real change and for a nation that needs to start looking outside the box. The US has too many internal issues that need a fresh perspective on: eco-friendly energy, same sex marriage, stem cell research, birth control, universal health care, foreign policy, getting our butts out of Iraq... There are a lot of areas that need to be addressed and unfortunately Palin does NOT have the foresight or experience to be able to help make the decisions to get this country back on track... If McCain-Palin are in office, the US economy will unfortunately continue to tumble...

Sent by Maricella | 4:41 PM | 9-16-2008

I dislike Sarah Palin's over use of religion. My biggest problem, however, is her lack of experience. Alaska has a wind-fall tax on oil companies; citizens of the great state receive income each year from the oil income; they tax only their visitors. Does she identify with any of us in the lower 48?

John McCain has admits he has done nothing specific for the State of Arizona over his time in Congress, yet Sarah brags about her requests for over $200,000,000 of the federal budget for her state's needs! Talk about a diversity ticket!

Sent by Theresa P | 4:45 PM | 9-16-2008

this discussion is unbelievable. It shows that Palin's supporters know nothing about our current government and reps. One of them said: "No one asked Nancy Pelosi (about her children)". Most of us women know that Nancy P's children were ALL GROWN before she even began as a volunteer Dem. worker. What gives with these women who support Palin? Are they as ignorant as Palin is? What an awful election season this has turned into. Shame on us.

Sent by Linda | 4:47 PM | 9-16-2008

To the women who switched from Obama to McCain because of Palin: Ladies, please!
While Sarah might make a rousing addition to our carpool, book club, or PTO, she
is *not* qualified to be president of our country--and that is what she well might
turn out to be, considering that she is running with a 72-year-old cancer survivor.
Please vote for the presidential candidate who reflects your politics, not the v-p
you'd most like to be stuck behind in the supermarket checkout line.

Sent by Lisa Goff | 4:54 PM | 9-16-2008

I am so very glad to see, from the comments that I am not the only one who has very serious doubts about this "new shining star" the quintessential hockey Mom.The Pit Bull with lipstick.
I made a choice that I realize I could have done much more with my life, but I stayed home, my husband deployed, we are both retired military,he, from Active Duty, myself from the Naval Reserves. My children were my #1 concern and priority. I cannot imagine how she can tout her Mommy-ness when her 4 month old special needs child is being cared for, by whom? A nanny? The other kids? Their father? Who?
She wanted to ban books? She wants us all to be into her extremely conservative church's beliefs? And good grief, she doesn't think humans have anything to do with the environmental issues? How is that possible? Has she been under a rock? What about either conserving or alternative methods. (Have you seen a Mr T Boone Pickens' idea?)
I have been a Pro-choice person ever since I saw the young women spit out baby after baby after baby,(I was 10)in spite of warnings from their Physicians against it, because their religion told them Birth Control was a sin.
I think if there is any woman who has ever gone through an abortion or even considered one,and has not had second thoughts,or wondered about their decision, but isn't the moral issue between her and God? I never want American women to ever again not be able to have a safe medical procedure. I never want to see the bumper stickers with a coat hanger that says "Never Again" come back. I think we have made such strides in the past 100 years, voting, education,equal rights, well we are getting there...and I sincerely think Sarah Palin will take us back so far, we will end up like our grand mothers.No rights and killing our own dinner. I can't even say her name in the same sentence with Hillary Clinton's. Sarah has nothing in comparison. There is no comparison. Except for the uterus, maybe.
We all feel strongly and I for one cannot think that she will ever be up to the job.Perhaps she should try raising her family and learning a bit more before she goes big time politics.
Lastly, can you just imagine her filling in for McCain if his health is as fragile as the average 72 year old? Heaven help us all!

Sent by Pat Kennedy | 5:01 PM | 9-16-2008

Well, I love the comment that white women are flocking to Palin...maybe because I am not white is the reason why I don't identify with her. I did not vote for Senator Clinton, because I didn't agree on how she would run the country, not that she couldn't. She is extremely capable. I voted for Obama, because I like his message of hope and I believe he can change the country in profound ways. If I agreed with Sarah Palin's approach and policies, I would certainly vote for her...not because demographically, she is more like me...a working mother. I simply do not agree with her views, and therefore she will not get my vote...whether she is a woman or not.

Sent by ES | 5:12 PM | 9-16-2008

I am so glad to see so many intelligent women speaking out.
I thought the show was very informative and am glad that I listened but much happier now that I have read these comments.
One statement made, that I agree with is Sarah Palin has set feminism back about three decades. Thinking about the rights of my grand daughters and what the impact of a person like this can have is just one of the things that bothers me.
I will vote for Obama and Bidden

Sent by Cheryl | 5:46 PM | 9-16-2008

One of the guests today described Palin as a feminist because she breast feeds while on conference calls and her husband spends time with the children. If that is your belief of what feminism represents, I guess one could embrace Palin as a feminist. I find the notion that this is feminism to be absurd. And it all takes away from this being a PRESIDENTIAL election and the issues.

Sent by J Hannon | 6:34 PM | 9-16-2008

While driving to work listening to today's show I almost had a wreck.
1. The comment from Katherine Mangu-Ward about not being concerned that Palin was not and could not reach out to women of color was appalling and one of the most disturbing comments I've heard this week. I had to check my date book. Are we still in the 21st century or have we regressed to 1940? I agree, if not our national leaders, then who???
2. I loved the comment from the caller: Sarah may be a nice lady and I might buy Avon from her but . . . run my country - no way!
3. I am taking heart from all of these comments posted. Why isn't the media covering us, those of us who still can reason?
4. Finally, can we stop talking about Palin?????

Sent by Lori | 6:37 PM | 9-16-2008

I agree that I am heartened to see the comments on this page. By many of the comments heard on the show and in other "news" reports, it seemed that many people are taken in by the manipulative ruse that McCain has introduced into the election. However, reading the blog here tells me that many people realize that we do not know very much of Palin and that what IS known shows her to be a supremely unqualified candidate for the VP of this country.

Sent by Sarah | 7:00 PM | 9-16-2008

I must say I'm heartened by reading these posts. The guests and callers on the broadcast were an absolute contrast to most of these comments. I only wish more people would read these comments vs the many that heard the show.

Sent by Cheryl Polzin | 7:10 PM | 9-16-2008

Wow, lots of opinions here! Listen, kids need their mom at all ages but especially in their youth. I can appreciate her ambition. However, her first priority should be with her kids, as CLEARLY, they need her now. Also, lets not jump on this bandwagon just because she is a woman. Let's think with our brains and not our emotions. Does she and McCain parallel with your views? All of them, not just one? If not, don't vote for them!

Sent by Shannon Burbridge | 7:38 PM | 9-16-2008

It was with a heavy heart that I listened to educated women on this program supporting Palin. Lest we forget, as women we fought for equal treatment partially based upon our commitment to equal rights: ours as well as others. How can a committed woman listen to Palin and hear anything that supports that ideology? It was embarrassing to listen to your guests, caught up in the Palin window dressing. As early feminists, we believed that our movement was that of civil rights. Those of us who are early feminists know through trial and error that no woman can "have it all"; something, or someone is going to suffer. It appears that the knowledge of the older females in this discussion is being lost upon the younger generation. Palin does not connect, or even mention support or empathy of women who are struggling without a network of support, which she has and which allows her to do what she wants. I have yet to hear any word of empathy or support from Palin for women who are not just like her. Come on you supposedly educated women--what are you thinking??

Sent by Jamie Jinkerson | 7:43 PM | 9-16-2008

I am a 53 year old white woman with two daughters, aged 26 and 21. I am INSULTED that the Republican Party/McCain selected Sarah Palin for the VP slot on the ticket. If this choice was a gesture to appeal to women voters - tough luck. American women will not forget the issues, we will not look past her lack of qualifications, and we will not vote for her simply because of her gender. Sorry, GOP, you've seriously underestimated the intelligence of American women. And that is the epitome of sexism.

Sent by Deb | 7:59 PM | 9-16-2008

I listened to the show and was pretty shocked at how no one mentioned how Palin shows a lack of gravitas, of having a deep understanding of history in order to avoid disastrous mistakes, a thorough knowledge of international affairs to make measured judgments, and a nuanced perspective of the world that goes beyond reflex reactions. The vice-presidency is an incredibly profound job.

The fact that she spent 312 days out of two years back at her home 600 miles from the capitol shows that she can't handle the responsibilities of an executive job with 5 kids.

And why does everyone say how she seems like a great person? She continues to lie about her record, she is dishonest in pretending she is ready for the job (even she knows she is not), and she seems to have a high-school mentality in her work (firing people who disagree with her, hiring friends with little experience). I would never have a friend like that!

When will the people in our country stop voting for beer buddies? We are voting in someone to take on one of the most difficult and important jobs on the planet.

Sent by Constance | 8:01 PM | 9-16-2008

Why are we discussing gender? With any male candidate chosen, we would be discussing issues, qualifications, positions, etc. I am a woman and believe that we are as qualified as our male counterparts in any job. Gender (or race) is beside the point. Is Sarah Palin qualified to be VP or President? If she were a man, this is what we would be discussing. For women to be treated equally with men in any endeavor, gender cannot be the issue. As to the caller today who commented that Sarah Palin was the first "real" candidate she had seen, I ask if she has looked at her history in Alaska? She may be less visible than politicians in the lower 48, but she is every bit the politician as anyone else. People are kidding themselves if they think otherwise. Maybe women are just looking for a reason to vote the Republican ticket despite the positions.

Sent by Sharon Verrill | 8:01 PM | 9-16-2008

Palin in NO way represents me as a woman or as an American! No way! No McCain, no Palin!

Sent by Amy Petersen | 8:05 PM | 9-16-2008

George: I apologize for my less than clear comment. I may be a fiscal conservative but I vote my social beliefs and they tend to be fairly liberal(or extremely, if you are a conservative). I say "the opportunity of a life time." with great fear in my voice. If they get the white house they have an opportunity to alter the makeup of the supreme court even further than they already have, thus possibly changing the direction of this country, in a manner that is very far from my beliefs.

Sent by ben pritchard | 8:13 PM | 9-16-2008

I am an educated women and find it offensive that politicians belittle my intelligence by assuming that I will vote for a candidate based on their sex and not the issues. As women, we have to stand up for our rights and demand that politicians hear us. We are intelligent and make political decisions based on the issues not a candidate's sex.

Sent by Rebecca V. | 8:36 PM | 9-16-2008

The fact that Sarah Palin is a mother of 5 is not, in fact, relevant to her viability as a VP candidate. We should be much more concerned about her hypocritical use of the Bridge to Nowhere, incidents including Troopergate involving questionable judgment, favoritism and personal vendettas. Why was her husband party to official State e-mails and a participant in meetings to cut the State budget? In 1968, a shrewd media campaign chronicled in "The Selling of the President" paved the way for Richard Nixon to become President. The same type of campaign to manipulate the press and public is underway now - to sell Sarah Palin. Her positives are very weak, and her negatives are far too strong. As a rule, we vote for the Presidential candidate, but in this case, the choice of Palin is reason enough to say thanks, but no thanks to McCain-Palin.

Sent by Roger Bohmrich | 8:42 PM | 9-16-2008

I appreciated the discusion today regarding Sarah Palin. At the end of
the day it does come to issues. Frankly, I'm ready for the debates between the candidates. Right now it's wading through the stumping and sniping. One issue that Sarah Palin brings to the table (perhaps unintentionally) is the issue of the "Wal Mart" mom. My wife is one. She has a Masters
degree and has chosen to stay home and
raise our four children. But somehow
some women have a problem with her voting. It's a tounge in cheek barb
that somehow my wife's life choice (or perhaps vote) should not be taken more seriously. My wife is an incredibly intelligent
and capable woman. We respect a woman
who chooses to have a career. I'd like
our decision for my wife to stay home with that same amount of respect.
We're still undecided.

Sent by M. Haslam | 8:53 PM | 9-16-2008

The thing about Sarah Palin representing the "average mom" to me is: I am a mom, and an educated one, but even though I am passionate about the world around me and care about "issues" and history, I really don't feel qualified to be a vice president, or worse, a president. Sarah might or might not understand class, which in my opinion is more important than race, but we have to think about the enormity of the job. On the other hand, many countries are headed by people who are less qualified than her. The job is not about gender, and she shouldn't be used just for that reason. I am sure she is a nice person, but it has taken me 20 years just to understand Boston history, being a transplant. A person good in diplomacy really needs to be well-traveled. Simple logic is useful, but history and culture can't be understood from a few months reading books.

Sent by yma | 8:54 PM | 9-16-2008

I listened to the NPR story and then recieved on my email this piece from a friend. It is so eloquent...I had to share it.

Eve Ensler, the American playwright, performer, feminist and activist best known for "The Vagina Monologues", wrote the following about Sarah Palin:

Drill, Drill, Drill

I am having Sarah Palin nightmares. I dreamt last night that she was a member of a club where they rode snowmobiles and wore the claws of drowned and starved polar bears around their necks. I have a particular thing for Polar Bears. Maybe it's their snowy whiteness or their bigness or the fact that they live in the arctic or that I have never seen one in person or touched one. Maybe it is the fact that they live so comfortably on ice. Whatever it is, I need the polar bears.

I don't like raging at women. I am a Feminist and have spent my life trying to build community, help empower women and stop violence against them. It is hard to write about Sarah Palin. This is why the Sarah Palin choice was all the more insidious and cynical. The people who made this choice count on the goodness and solidarity of Feminists.

But everything Sarah Palin believes in and practices is antithetical to Feminism which for me is part of one story -- connected to saving the earth, ending racism, empowering women, giving young girls options, opening our minds, deepening tolerance, and ending violence and war.

I believe that the McCain/Palin ticket is one of the most dangerous choices of my lifetime, and should this country chose those candidates the fall-out may be so great, the destruction so vast in so many areas that America may never recover. But what is equally disturbing is the impact that duo would have on the rest of the world. Unfortunately,
this is not a joke. In my lifetime I have seen the clownish, the
inept, the bizarre be elected to the presidency with regularity.

Sarah Palin does not believe in evolution. I take this as a metaphor. In her world and the world of Fundamentalists nothing changes or gets better or evolves. She does not believe in global warming. The melting of the arctic, the storms that are destroying our cities, the pollution and rise of cancers, are all part of God's plan. She is fighting to take the polar bears off the endangered species list. The earth, in Palin's view, is here to be taken and plundered. The wolves
and the bears are here to be shot and plundered. The oil is here to be taken and plundered. Iraq is here to be taken and plundered. As she said herself of the Iraqi war, "It was a task from God."

Sarah Palin does not believe in abortion. She does not believe women who are raped and incested and ripped open against their will should
have a right to determine whether they have their rapist's baby or

She obviously does not believe in sex education or birth control. I
imagine her daughter was practicing abstinence and we know how many
babies that makes.

Sarah Palin does not much believe in thinking. From what I gather she
has tried to ban books from the library, has a tendency to dispense
with people who think independently. She cannot tolerate an
environment of ambiguity and difference. This is a woman who could and
might very well be the next president of the United States. She would
govern one of the most diverse populations on the earth.

Sarah believes in guns. She has her own custom Austrian hunting
rifle. She has been known to kill 40 caribou at a clip. She has shot
hundreds of wolves from the air.

Sarah believes in God. That is of course her right, her private
right. But when God and Guns come together in the public sector, when
war is declared in God's name, when the rights of women are denied in
his name, that is the end of separation of church and state and the
undoing of everything America has ever tried to be.

I write to my sisters. I write because I believe we hold this
election in our hands. This vote is a vote that will determine the
future not just of the U.S., but of the planet. It will determine
whether we create policies to save the earth or make it forever
uninhabitable for humans. It will determine whether we move towards
dialogue and diplomacy in the world or whether we escalate violence
through invasion, undermining and attack. It will determine whether we
go for oil, strip mining, coal burning or invest our money in
alternatives that will free us from dependency and destruction. It
will determine if money gets spent on education and healthcare or
whether we build more and more methods of killing. It will determine
whether America is a free open tolerant society or a closed place of
fear, fundamentalism and aggression.

If the Polar Bears don't move you to go and do everything in your
power to get Obama elected then consider the chant that filled the
hall after Palin spoke at the RNC, "Drill Drill Drill." I think of
teeth when I think of drills. I think of rape. I think of destruction.
I think of domination. I think of military exercises that force
mindless repetition, emptying the brain of analysis, doubt, ambiguity
or dissent. I think of pain.

Do we want a future of drilling? More holes in the ozone, in the
floor of the sea, more holes in our thinking, in the trust between
nations and peoples, more holes in the fabric of this precious thing
we call life?

Eve Ensler
September 5, 2008

Sent by Jana | 9:21 PM | 9-16-2008

The questions should be: Does she know the history of Afghanistan? What tribes live there, what languages do they speak? Is she familiar with the leaders and politics of Central America, or South America, or Indonesia? Does she know anything about the mothers and children living around the world? What about Haiti? Does she know where Bali is? Or Somalia? Or UAE?

Maybe NPR should give a job description to all the mothers out there. They relate to her as a mom, but the job is Vice President. She won't just be writing checks for day care centers. She will be meeting with foreign dignitaries, and she should be informed about who they are and what is important to them, their people, their cultures.

I suspect she was chosen for her global naivete because people thought she'd be easily manipulated. Probie Gov. of Alaska doesn't equate to world diplomacy. Mothers and children in Haiti and Afghanistan and Iraq are crying tonight.

I am a pro-life Democrat, but this isn't about issues and being a mom, it is about the fact that we are on the world stage, and we are not meant to be a spoiled young child with too many toys anymore. Our country needs to grow up in our understanding with other peoples and cultures. Our country needs to mature, to walk with wisdom and finesse. Biden is the person for this job.

Oh! And don't put Nancy Pelosi and Sarah Palin in the same category. Pelosi is too amazing and experienced to be compared to Palin. Palin is a fine woman, but a baby in her world view.

Sent by tamar | 9:49 PM | 9-16-2008

What amazes me as a Catholic, is that despite Palin's anti-choice rhetoric, she herself has had an abortion! It came out in an interview that during her beauty pageant days, she had an abortion to win a beauty competition! What an abomination! And then to hear that she won't hire a Catholic -- it's too much to bear. I cannot in good conscientiousness, vote for this disingenuous woman.

Sent by J P | 11:16 PM | 9-16-2008

I find Palin's comment about hockey mom's being like pitbulls with lipstick to be very telling of the behind the scenes discourse of our political situation. Her comment was met with unbelievable cheer, and I couldn't help but think what if Michele Obama had said that? Would she be cheered? No, she would be labeled thuggish, conjuring up all the stereotypes about blacks and pitbulls, gangs and dog fights. But Palin is cheered. I wonder if this is a problem for anyone else?

Sent by carmen's mom | 11:36 PM | 9-16-2008

I am a 57-year-old white woman who raised two children while working full time and going back to school to earn a master's degree. Sarah Palin does NOT represent me in ANY way. She may be genuine, as the commentator suggested, but her views, while (maybe) genuinely held by her, are not my views, and I could NEVER support her. I am evaluating the candidates on their knowledge of the issues and their likely ability to be diplomatic, measured, pragmatic, honest, and smart in turning this country around. We have too many critical domestic and foreign problems to let someone as inexperienced and ideological be anywhere near the White House. I don't care what her gender is!

Janet in Colorado

Sent by Janet in Colorado | 11:38 PM | 9-16-2008

What has happened to NPR. You have been over taken by the right wing. Your panel is always slanted to the neo cons. Where is a reporter from Mother Jones, the Nation or Counterpunch? You mention the Daily Kos like it is a terrorist organization. I listen all day, everyday and I am sad that the last balanced political talk show is going the way of am radio. Supply-side economics is killing this country and this is all you can talk about! Shame on you NPR.

Sent by Brigette | 12:10 AM | 9-17-2008

Dear Neal -

The issue is not whether Palin can take a conference call and breast feed simultaneously but her policies. She does not have the experience to be one heart beat away from the presidency! She does not know even the basic issues (e.g., Bush Doctrine, global warming, etc.) and she wants to continue the failed policies of the current administration. CAn NPR please shift the conversation to what is important.

Sent by Marcia | 12:26 AM | 9-17-2008

I'm insulted by the notion that I would vote for a candidate based solely on gender.

What is truly insulting about putting Palin on the ticket at all is that it was done only because she is a woman. Is she the most qualified Republican to run for Vice President? I don't think so.

The fact that Republicans think that as a woman I would blindly vote for McCain because his running mate is female *should* be absurd, and I'm deeply disappointed to see that it's working! What should have been a transparent political ploy and a nail in the McCain candidacy's coffin has instead become a successful distraction from issues and discussions about who is most qualified to lead our nation.

The Republicans needed a truly outlandish event to distract from events of such magnitude as the war in Iraq and Afghanistan, reminders of Katrina, and the rapid collapse of Wall Street and my 401(k), to name a few. And I'm sad to say they have succeeded.

Sent by Christin | 12:39 AM | 9-17-2008

I am a woman and I take offense that political pundits think that I will vote for a woman rather than what they stand for. We are wasting precious time asking irrelevant questions. I listened to her talk during the convention and to put the war in Iraq on the doings of god is just showing how she cannot face the ground realities as they stand. The question is not whether she can be a VP besides being a mom of 5.. the question is, can she be a VP at all !!

Sent by S Seetharam | 12:39 AM | 9-17-2008

First of all, I am an Independent voter and value my right to examine all candidates and then to select the most qualified. After seeing Governor Palin's interview I believe she simply isn't prepared and her hasty and autocratic managerial style revealed during the interview and demonstrated during her time in Alaskan politics is not conducive to an elected position that requires deliberation, judiciousness, flexibility and openness. This is irrespective to gender.

During the interview she said she didn't hesitate, she didn't even "blink" when McCain asked her to be VP. In my opinion someone who makes such an important, crucial decision without considerable time and thought has neither the temperament nor astute judgment and analytical skills essential to hold such a high office.

It seems to be a pattern in her life. She transferred from one college to another and flipped from one major to another. She attended four schools in six years to earn one bachelors degree in journalism. In my state even teachers are required to have a master degree to renew their certificate. Besides one's leadership ability and style I believe higher education is paramount for anyone serving in a high-level of government in today's complex world.

Moreover, Governor Palin's method for achieving goals seems to be act now, think later and that is the exact pattern the current administration used when entering the war in Iraq without an exit strategy. As we all know she said yes to the bridge to nowhere before she said no, another instance where she used the act now, think later approach. In my opinion, she has demonstrated impulsive, rigid and imprudent tendencies when making major decisions, and as Americans facing an economic, energy and healthcare crisis, that's something we should all be concerned about unless we want the failed policies of the last eight years to continue.

Sent by Ali Harrod | 12:44 AM | 9-17-2008

The main difference between Hillary and Palin to me (caveat: I'm a male) is not so much on the issues- after all we would expect that a Republican candidate would not share the same views.

Rather, it's the fact that while Hillary fought and slugged it out to almost make it to the top of the ticket, through a grueling primary process in which both she and Obama received a record number of votes.

Palin, on the other hand, was plucked from the sparsely populated, remote state of Alaska after 1.5 years of experience as governor.

In terms of just comparing Clinton and Palin because they are both female, it seems like Palin has enjoyed the most egregious case of affirmative action, and from the party that says they hate affirmative action so much.

Sent by Aaron | 12:52 AM | 9-17-2008

Given her avowed policies and politics, her reported track record as a mayor and a state governor, her apparent ignorance of foreign policy, economics, environmental issues--I have to say, I wouldn't vote for Sarah Palin if Simone de Beauvoir and Susan B. Anthony descended from the clouds and anointed her "Woman of the Year". (Not that I expect they would find her any more palatable a candidate than I do.) And yes, I am a woman and a feminist. I'm also an American with a functioning brain, able to make discriminating judgments about who is qualified for executive office. I know when someone is attempting to sell me a patronizing and cynical bill of goods. No thanks, Republican leadership, you can keep your insulting attempt to win my vote. No thanks.

Sent by Jane Wilson | 1:37 AM | 9-17-2008

My perspective is a little different than most working moms. I am a mom of a special needs child and my opinion is based on my personal experience. I also have a graduate degree, a career and am a women's rights advocate but for me this is not about women's rights it's about the rights of special needs children. My husband and I brought our son into the world and thus believe we had a duty to provide him with the best we could, in our opinion he had a right to the best care we personally could provide. When my son was born I put my career on hold to care for his multiple and complex developmental needs, taking him to doctor appointments and various therapies plus implemented the therapy at home on a consistent daily basis. My husband was integrally involved in all aspects of his care as well and used many family leave days during those crucial first four years when early intervention is essential. It was challenging but oh so rewarding. Thank goodness today our son is a thriving, functional young adult.

We've always had a partnership in our marriage so this was a mutual decision. Taking care of my son and his sister who is three years older was more than a full time job it was a 24 hour a day job for BOTH of us. In addition, at times we needed the support of our extended families. It was a difficult time in our lives and we didn't do everything perfectly but we did everything the best we could and he was our top priority. I could not have worked part time at McDonalds during those years much less at the White House! I could not have been a Girl Scout leader much less a world leader! If my husband or I were in Ms. Palin's position and had such pressing, critical needs in our family neither of us would have agreed to be the VP nominee. Through the years we have learned that it is vital to set personal and professional limits in one's life or stress has a way of making itself known through illness and family problems. In fact, if I was in Ms. OR Mr. Palin's shoes facing all their current family problems I would be holding a sign that said 'Family First" not "Country First". My values are contrary to hers, which is a decisive factor for me to consider personally when voting, but maybe not for you. This is still America, I think we can agree to disagree.

Interestingly, Dr.Dobson, a well-known, conservative, Evangelical and psychologist advises parents on this issue in his book Complete Marriage and Family Home Reference Guide:(2000)
"It has become politically incorrect to have babies and to devote a few years to raising them. There is no more important job in the universe... Families should be there when the first step is taken and the first word is spoken and when fears and anxieties arise....My father and mother were faced with the same difficult choice when I was 16 years old. Dad was an evangelist who was gone most of the time, while my mother was home with me. During the adolescent years, I began to get testy with my mother.... I'll never forget the night my mom called my dad on the phone. I was listening as she said, "I need you." To my surprise, my dad immediately cancelled a four-year slate of meetings, sold our home and moved 700 miles south to take a pastorate so he could be with me until I finished high school. It was an enormous sacrifice for him to make. He never fully recovered professionally from it. But he and Mom felt my welfare was more important than their immediate responsibilities." ...No job can compete with the responsibility of shaping and molding a new human being. That statement is not particularly politically correct in this cultural environment, but I believe it to be true."

Sent by Alyssa | 2:08 AM | 9-17-2008

I am so disappointed that "white women" are shifting their votes in such numbers simply because they identify with the newcomer. This is what "white men" did when they voted for Bush- the man they could identify with, who was a "real American." Look where that got us. Governor Palin is against reproductive rights and wants to overturn Roe vs. Wade, which I think is both unacceptably interfering and also against true Republican values. Small Government does NOT interfere in personal lives and tell people what they cannot do, and yet she wants to do just that. Her "moral values" for some reason can be inflicted upon my body and my life. I disagree.
Somehow in the last 8 years the rules have been re-written to equate Republican with Christian Conservative Values. Real Republican Values of financial caution and small government are gone. This administration has been the most fiscally irresponsible in decades, has encouraged the blending of church and state (as long as it's Christian church and no other), and has tried to interfere in both reproductive rights and the rights of same sex couples... none of which have anything to do with being a fiscal conservative and all of which has to do with being a radical Evangelical. This country is great because I don't interfere in YOUR life, and I don't want you to interfere in MINE and make my children pray for your God in OUR school. Keep God at home where personal values rule, and take care of the country by taking care of EVERYONE (and yes, that includes muslims, jews, christians, blacks, latinos, whites, immigrants, straights, gays, retirees, children, the disabled, rednecks, elites, women, men and everyone else, too!)

Sent by Michelle Imbach | 2:17 AM | 9-17-2008

Neal I'm so disappointed in this show. Both the Palin apologists on the panel and Palin supporters calling in were allowed to state lies regarding Gov. Palin's policy position. You failed to correct them through-out the show with 1 exception.
National Public Radio through our tax-dollars has an obligation to protect the public interest and not to be used as a propaganda machine.
1) Palin is NOT less militant on contraception. She is to the RIGHT of social conservatives: she is AGAINST birth-control pills and against abortion even in cases of incest or rape.
2) She is NOT a liberaterian nor a fiscal conversative. She is the only mayor in Wasilla's history to have requested earmarks from the federal government: $22million of it.
-Additionally, she LEFT Wasilla IN-DEBT. The highest debt in Wasilla's history.
3) Ethics charges: she is accused of abuse of power both as Mayor (to fire Libarian who voted for an opponent) and as Governor (firing police-superivor who refused to do her bidding). Both charges show a distrubing trend of retailation and vindictiveness.
3) Palin sent a 70-page request for over $200 million in earmarks to indicted Sen. Steven of Alaska. Requesting money from OUR pockets to the only state making more money than God is CRIMMINAL.
4) The BRIDGE TO NOWHERE-we finally meet the infamous star of this attempt to steal money from tax-payers and it's none other than Gov. Palin.
5) The reformer? One thing for sure is that Palin DID over-thrown her republican rivals, only to take their place and CONTINUE the culture of corruption. Palin went a step above the call of greed, charging the state of Alaska to pay her a daily fee for her "vacation" in her own house.

*****Women who want to vote for Palin due to her gender have the right to do so-it's a free country.****These women however DO NOT HAVE THE RIGHT to use NPR to lie to the American public about Gov. Palin's record and policies.

We can only hope that NPR submits an error correction to us the People.

Sent by Beth-Ann | 2:24 AM | 9-17-2008

The guests who referred to themselves as feminists Palin supporters seriously turned my stomach. Any candidate, male or female, who thinks women should be forced to carry a pregnancy resulting from rape or incest to term should be held in the harshest contempt by all women. Any candidate, male or female, who would force women who have been raped to pay for their own rape evidence collection kits, should be afraid to show their face among women. Any candidate, male or female, who would support the aerial slaughter of wolves (which the people of Alaska voted down 3 times), should be held in contempt by everybody.
As far as the high regard in which the guests held Palin for "all she has achieved" and how much harder she had to work to get there - that's a pathetic joke! Sarah Palin has been elected to 2 positions - one as a mayor of a town with fewer than 9,000 people, and the other as Governor of a state with a population less than Portland, OR. Sarah Palin was swimming in a very small pond prior to being thrust with very little forethought into the national spotlight and into the number 2 position on the Republican ticket. To laud her for her accomplishments is an insult to women of both parties who have won far tougher battles and who would have been much better prepared for a potential Vice Presidency than Sarah Palin.
Sarah Palin is nothing more than a PR stunt on the part of the McCain team which could nevertheless end in disaster should we get stuck with her in a position of power. The selection of Palin as the candidate for VP on the Republican ticket was a choice made purely on the basis of swaying gullible voters for the election, not on consideration of what should happen should we be unfortunate enough to have her as VP or heaven forbid, President. This is not going to be a matter of agreeing to disagree, or respecting the position espoused by Palin supporters even if I don't agree with it. Sarah Palin is Pat Robertson, Jerry Falwell and Dick Cheney rolled up in a ball and stuffed into a skirt, and any woman who would presume to call themselves a feminist while supporting Ms Palin has suspended her intellectual faculties and crossed the line into such willful delusion that I cannot tap some hidden reserve of respect to extend to them. The Dominionist fundamentalism Palin runs counter to both the good of our nation and to everything women have tried to achieve for 100 years, and any woman who could call themselves a feminist while considering voting for her is nothing short of an idiot.

Sent by K Edwards | 3:50 AM | 9-17-2008

Why is it that when NPR gives us the Days rhetoric from BOTH campaigns, Obama's quote is always played from Obama directly (like a mini commercial) and McCain's quote is always briefly read by the announcer?

Could NPR be anymore obviously buyist!

Sent by Steve | 6:29 AM | 9-17-2008

A quick review of the comments listed takes away some of the isolated, all alone feeling I had yesterday while listening to TOTN, gripping my steering wheel and driving through a storm (both in the air and on the air). Other than Nicole, where were the voices of other women who are not comfortable with the idea of Sarah Palin in power?

I am a white, entrepreneurial woman who on paper may look like something like Sarah Palin but in reality share nothing in common with her views. Her perspectives on abortion, prayer in schools, creationism and the environment
and the thought that she might be just a heartbeat away from leading this country scare me.

I'd love to see a woman in power -- just not this one.

Sent by Betsy Polk | 7:32 AM | 9-17-2008

When I hear women especially say that they usually vote democrat or that they are usually a liberal or like the caller on the 9-16-08 show said- usually a left leaning democrat and then they go on and on about how they will vote McCain because of Palin who is so far from left leaning I can only conclude on thing- this person is a bigot and can't vote for a black man or even a bi-racial man. I think there are a lot of this kind of person out there and it's scary. I think this nation will be stronger if it takes the plunge to full inclusion and electing Barack Obama is a great step in that direction.

Sent by Veronica Ciambra | 7:43 AM | 9-17-2008

Shame on NPR and Talk of the Nation. Here you are supposedly discussing Palin and feminists and you completely ignore the endorsement, announced this very day on Morning Edition, from the National Organization of Women, of Obama/Biden -- particularly as a response to Sarah Palin being on the McCain ticket.

In addition, you selected two guests FOR Palin and one against. And Ms. Tweddle, who is billed as a Republican mother of three, has that unique illogic of the strict Republican talking points guided by Steven Schmidt. When I googled her name, I got a ton of listings about a British gymnast, and one that showed she also recently was quoted in The Washington Post. Where did you get her?! Was she provided or was NPR too lazy to find another Republican woman?

And the one guest who was not FOR Palin gave unusually weak arguments as to why, given the scandalous behavior as a government leader recently reported on the Sunday front page of both the New York Times and Washington Post.

With so much at stake, and so many who still believe in the credibility of NPR, this seemingly-filtered hour was a major disservice.

Sent by Barbara Bellows-TerraNova | 7:44 AM | 9-17-2008

It is scary that she has 0 foreign policy experience(seeing Russia from Alaska is NOT enough), ready for a preemptive war, is shielded from the media all the time and other than energy knows NOTHING else on subjects a VP has to know. Obama-Biden are totally more educated than McCain-Palin. It shows very clearly in their talk!

Sent by Vani | 8:17 AM | 9-17-2008

The "required reading" noted in this article was not useful for me. It did not expose or explain Palin's politics, qualifications, political practices, etc. I beg the press to tell us clearly and plainly what Palin stands for and what those stands mean. Little of what has been said, including, sadly, yesterday's "Talk" discussion, has illuminated what she would mean to the country as VP, or could mean as POTUS.

Sent by Jonathan Friedman | 8:24 AM | 9-17-2008

I am an avid NPR listener and was appalled by yesterday's show - talk about a stacked deck!! Two out of three guests supported Sarah Palin - what was unbiased about that?! I am a 61 year-old white woman who is an educator. The only thing we have in common are two X chromosomes. I am very disappointed in TNT that the show was not better balanced and I expected more.

Sent by Judi Taylor | 9:07 AM | 9-17-2008

I listened to this show yesterday and there was one important point that was not made when "Victoria" commented that we needed to drill for oil in America so that we were not dependent on foreign oil - First, "we" will not be drilling, the oil companies will be drilling. Those oil companies won't be handing over the oil to Americans as a gift, they will sell it back to us at the same rate they sell it to every other country on the world market. It will not benefit America one bit to allow the oil companies to drill more. Second, the oil companies already have millions of acres of land leased in the US that they are not drilling. So why is giving them more land going to benefit us? I was very disappointed that no one responded with these basic facts.

Sent by Miss M | 9:53 AM | 9-17-2008

Sarah Palin is not ready and will never be ready to be VP.She is better off to stay her little town where she is somebody.She struggles most interview, we can't get straight answer from her; she sound like she not sure what she's saying. she doesn't have my vote. just because she is a woman doesn't cut it her poor background and lack of feminism is outrages.

Sent by Dee | 11:18 AM | 9-17-2008

I won't support a Palin pick because after hearing her speak once without a teleprompter she just sounds stupid. We can't have a President how doesn't know what the Bush Doctrine is and why it has damaged our republic. Eight more years of having an unengaged unintelligent person in the White House should count as a high crime and misdemeanor, it is down right treasonous. I'm not sure she would get that reference.

Sent by Curt from Kansas and dang proud of it. | 11:37 AM | 9-17-2008

I heard portions of this program as I was in my car and was disturbed by it. Firstly, I thought your choice of panelists was unbalanced and not well chosen. Your pro-Palin panelists were more articulate than your anti-Palin one. Furthermore, it rankled me that by airing this program you were playing into the hands of the Republican strategists who reasoned that they would get immense, free coverage with this VP selection and tilt the discussion toward personality and "family values." When is the hour-long program on Joe Biden?

Sent by Joan Chomak | 11:47 AM | 9-17-2008

I am a woman living in the Great State of Idaho (yes, Palin's birthplace & alma mater). We are blessed with many of the same attributes as Alaska - clean air & water, abundant forest resources, fish & wildlife and soaring mountains, but happily NOT the oil & gas reserves for which we might be tempted to sell our soul (city/State) for 30 pieces of silver.

In no way does Palin represent my views. Her stands on energy extraction, reproductive rights, and environment are all opposed to mine. Who knows what her take on world issues, education and healthcare are?

We do not need a "pit bull" in the White House - with or without lipstick, especially one who may have to step into the presidency. We need strong, intelligent, well-reasoned leaders who will help us rebuild what's broken in America and regain world respect. I'll be voting Obama/Biden.

Blue Girl in a Red State

Sent by K. Beall | 12:15 PM | 9-17-2008

I am a white, male, over-educated Obama supporter. I thought McCain's choice of Gov. Palin was a smart, perhaps shrewd, decision that may well turn out to be the deciding factor in the election.

I've heard significant discussions about motherhood and the role of the President/VP, but as yet no discussion about the question of active reproduction - i.e., what happens if a VP Palin becomes pregnant during office? Does it matter? Should it matter? As a former OB/Gyn, I am keenly aware of the potential issues that could arise during pregnancy. Pregnancy is not a disease, but neither is it a completely benign condition that requires no particular consideration.

Do we restrict/ask about reproduction for our astronaut candidates? Workers at a nuclear reactor? Is there anything about being the "leader of the free world" (or the first runner up) that would suggest this person should not be pregnant during office? Even if this is not a disqualifier, are the Palin family contraceptive choices be something that people should have a right to know about so that we can make an informed decision?

I would be very interested in hearing others' views about this issue and hope that the act of simply posing the question doesn't earn me the label of "sexist". My own opinion, open to persuasion by others' well-reasoned opinions, is that it would be inappropriate to restrict the office based upon reproductive status, but that it should be open for discussion and not a "private matter". Voters need this information.

What do you think?

Sent by Ross Martin | 12:19 PM | 9-17-2008

Your panel is over-represented by conservative republicans.

What percent of this nation is made up of conservative women?

Sent by PJ | 12:24 PM | 9-17-2008

I am a professional woman, a mother of three teenagers and a wife. I'm a democrat, and I will be voting for Obama. The 3 qualities I described for myself do not in any way sway me toward the republican ticket. Sara Palin does not represent me, nor will she be representing any of the women who will be voting republican. I listened to NPR as I was driving around on sales calls yesterday, and heard women say that they would be voting for Sara Palin. I wondered if any of these women realized that Sara Palin isn't exactly running for president and they can't vote for her. When they cast their votes they will be voting for another old white guy, not the attractive young woman standing next to him. Not withstanding the ultimate role of the VP being to succeed the president in the event of his death, lets also consider if she is actually qualified to do the job of VP (I hope someone has explained it to her). As president of the senate, should we consider her lack of congressional experience? And does she understand that when the senate disagrees with her views that she cannot fire them?
I wonder these things, and so should anyone else that is using Sara Palin as the deciding factor on their vote.

Sent by Ariana Warner | 1:42 PM | 9-17-2008

I was disappointed with yesterday's Talk of the Nation show. The discussion focused on Ms. Palin's gender. Did Neal Conan do any homework? What about Palin's track record of crony-ism, secrecy, an intimidation? Two of the guests supported Palin. I tremble inside to think that if Palin is elected to VP she could be a heart beat away from the Presidency and being Commander-in-Chief. She believes that the Iraq War is "God's Plan".

Sent by Charissa Ebersole | 2:08 PM | 9-17-2008

Great some sales woman running around making sales calls has the nerve to call Palin unqualified. What qualifies you to make that judgment? Palin will represent the women who vote Republican, just not the women who think they have a right to kill someone who inconveniences them, namely their own flesh and blood, their own baby.

Sent by Cliff | 2:10 PM | 9-17-2008

How did NPR happen to pick the guests on this show? As a white woman over 50, none of them represented my views or the views of other knowledgeable women I know. I had to turn it off. I was offended by many of the assertions made, such as Palin is the "only real" person in the election. Sorry, but that is neither substantial nor factual, and as with many of the comments, not relevant to a political discussion.

Sent by voter | 2:43 PM | 9-17-2008

Yesterday's discussion of Sarah Palin was incredibly painful to listen to. The panel discussion lacked the pithy discussion that I've come to expect from the show. Its focus on 'why Palin's uterus appeals or does not appeal to women' really skirted the question that we should be asking, 'why does Palin's uterus matters as all to women given her lack of experience, history blatant lies, pork barreling, and cronyism.'

Sent by Dawn Xie | 2:59 PM | 9-17-2008

just by the pictures, shows palin supporters are clueless and choices to ignore that mccained used it as well as chenney.
Palin very disturbing as of her constant lieing on the bridge to nowhere, reform, personal vendettas,hiring personal friends rather than quified people, her sueing the gov for having polar bear on the endangered species list.

disturbing indeed.

Sent by mike | 3:37 PM | 9-17-2008

I have read and heard on the raido about how Sara Palin has not attempted to better the lives of the INUIT PEOPLE of Alaska. Is it true that the INUIT women that have been raped must pay for a rape kit to be prepared? Stories of the sexual abuse against the Native Women in Alaska with NO attempt of proscution of the men abound around the world. I would like to have Mrs. Palin's answer somewhere during this election campaign.

Sent by Elizabeth | 3:37 PM | 9-17-2008


Isn't it interesting that the people who are complaining the most about "sexist" and "anti-feminist" attacks on Ms. Palin ARE NOT FEMINISTS?!

Long time feminist leaders -- like Gloria Steinem and Erica Jong -- as well as everyday feminists like me and millions of others, see through the trickery.

Our very serious concerns are based on the fact-checking that has revealed Ms. Palin's history of:

* a scattered education and an accompanying lack of critical thinking

* a lack of compassion for traditional women's issues

* choosing irrational faith over scientific evidence when determining public policy

* a willingness to manipulate information almost to the point of sheer nonsense

* a lack of competence in leadership and management

* an arrogance that has led to misuse of power and above-the-law behavior

* an overwhelming ambition that goes far beyond capability, and --

* oh yes, a complete willingness to do and say whatever Steven Schmidt says.

That deference to Schmidt is particularly frightening because while he is the man in charge of everything McCain, he also happens to have worked extensively for Karl Rove and Dick Cheney over the last decade.

Sent by Barbara Bellows-TerraNova | 9:14 PM | 9-17-2008

What I think is really sad is the way the democratic attack dogs are trying to undermine Palin. Its gotten so hideous that hackers have even tapped into he private email accounts to use her private messages. WOW what a sad campaign.

Sent by Suzanne | 10:04 PM | 9-17-2008

Its interesting how some women are so sure how Palin is soooooo untruthful and un-qualified. And most of them know this because of ????????? oh yes, because the liberal media told them so. I think the word that applies here is propaganda.

Sent by Terry | 10:20 PM | 9-17-2008

Y arent you printing my messages. I see how it is ............ liberal media at work again. ITs not working, and youll see when McCain and Palin wins

Sent by Suzanne | 10:42 PM | 9-17-2008

Sarah Palin has been on a meteoric career path and is incredibly popular. Her VP nomination BY FAR the biggest career step she's made so far. Are we to vote our applause for this? Aside from getting the nomination and being who she is, what has she said about what she plans to do? The media maelstrom aside, we have heard her speak for less than 15 minutes. Don't people want to hear her what her platform is before we all jump on it? Or is this a popularity contest? We have extensive speeches and interviews (not to mention voting records) from McCain, Obama and Biden, we have a sense of where each of them stands. It's hard to be inspired by an unknown, especially with so many people speaking for her.

Sent by Michael Shankman | 10:51 PM | 9-17-2008

I am single, professional, white, and middle aged...and I'm voting for Barack Obama because I truly believe that he is serious, genuine, professional, and has the vision that America needs at this time of instability. I have no confidence in a Barbie-like "hockey mom" who was brought onto the Republican ticket not because of her experience, but because of her looks and ability to jazz up McCain's old-manishness and crusty repetition. It was a reckless and irresponsible decision.

Sarah Palin does not represent me and I think she would make a very poor representative for the largely progressive-thinking, tolerant, and intelligent majority of Americans. I can see right through her flimsy bloomers to the ugly underbelly of the Republican Party.

In the world's eyes America is as trashy and cheap as the things that we do and the Republican party has become the poster child for everything that has gone wrong with this country. They have ruined our standing in the world, have made us into dangerous war mongers, and have undermined our noble goals of being thoughtful diplomatic leaders and conscious peace keepers.

When you peel back all the rhetoric and Hollywoodism, you are still left with an old man and a mother of a whole lot of troubled kids who has zero foreign policy experience, unless you count her border with Russia and her proximity to the the North Pole where I've heard that she might have diplomatic ties with Santa Claus.

We need leaders in Washington who know what they're doing and who aren't using pity or a pretty face to distract people from the flaws in their party or the way the country has been run into the ground. We're in an economic, and diplomatic crisis, for crying out loud! This is no time to gamble with "outsiders," "mavericks," and good-old-boys and gals! That sad phenomenon is happily leaving on the next horse outta Dodge!

I challenge all of us to step back from all the razzle dazzle and look at this from the vantage of history (and current raw reality): The Republican party represents the interests of the wealthy elite minority as it always has and it is the people in small towns and the average person trying to make ends meet who are exploited by that the most. What the average American fails to realize is that by voting for the Republicans, you are voting for a platform that will ultimately cause their own suffering.

And in the end, you'd better believe Big Oil trumps hockey moms and NASCAR dads...and guess whose hands are deepest in the barrel?

Sent by JuliaH | 11:42 PM | 9-17-2008

if you are checking and editing the comments, you should have noted that one commentator said that you are "buyist." i assume they meant "biased." maybe you should have put the correct spelling in parenthesis, but maybe you wanted them to look not so bright.

ps readers, take palin's uterus off the table. this is not a reason to vote for or against her. and women, have you lost your minds? hillary is a woman and none of you cared back then. you act like a woman has never had a chance at the white house!

Sent by tamar | 8:49 AM | 9-18-2008

women, stop being so hard on palin for both having kids, having a kid with downs syndrome - and if she had an abortion a long time ago, that may have actually shaped her current views. many women decide abortion is bad after they have had one. it is easy to talk about it as a procedure until you are on the table having a vacuum sucking your insides out. many post-abortion women decide abortion is wrong - and this is not hypocritical - it is growing up in wisdom and learning through experience.

but i actually heard a woman on NPR saying palin had no business having a down's syndrome kid because she should have and could have aborted. this is an insult to millions of people with down's syndrome who are happy to be alive, whatever their limitations or challenges.

again, the job is vice president, which carries a heavy diplomatic role and responsibility, not super parent. clearly women are very passionate about the abortion issue, but insulting this woman for her own personal breeding choices is cruel.

it is disturbing how many women are not asking about her experience on the world stage. and how many are quick to be so vicious about her views on a woman's body. we could all use the council that abortion is NOT an alternative form of birth control. however one feels about the woman's "right to chose" it is not a choice one should make unless under great duress. there is a difference between being raped and not wanting the child, or having grave health complications, vs. choosing to abort because one was sloppy or because they want to only have perfect children - not any with possible challenges or deformities.

Sent by yma | 9:03 AM | 9-18-2008

Thank you Blogger Ladies! After listening to the viewpoints expressed on this show, I was heartened to read this column of blogs. These are written by the "real" women! They are able to articulate rational concerns without resorting to the tinny cliches like "folks" and "real person". I only wish that NPR's guests were chosen with more care. The women on your show did not represent this woman's views. When is the media going to catch on? I have yet to speak with a woman who is impressed with Palin's beliefs or McCain's judgment in choosing her. I do believe there is the potential of some kind of true renaissance in this country - but only with progressive leadership and vision- which isn't offered by the McCain-Palin ticket.

Sent by Kb | 11:31 AM | 9-18-2008

I listened to this episode with total wonderment. Who are these people, or specifically women for this show, who believe that Sarah Palin believes in cutting taxes? Everyone should read this letter written by a Wasilla resident who knew Sarah Palin when she was mayor there. http://www.thepresidentialcandidates.us/about-sarah-palin-a-letter-from-anne-kilkenny/741/
And also, check the facts! Nothing that comes out of McCain and Palin's should be believed without doing some research. They are not afraid to out-and-out LIE. I'm an Obama supporter but even he is not above the occasional distortion of the truth. So everyone should do their homework!

Sent by Anna | 3:41 PM | 9-18-2008

Drilling in Alaska is not an overnight operation. It takes years and it is very possible that there may not be any oil. It is hazardous to the environment. Why not become efficient?

People do not realize that politicians are not like common people hence we can't relate to them directly as much as we like to we can't. Sarah Palin with her offshore drilling is not saying anything incredibly smart and if we think that she is then that says a lot about our level of intellect.

She is not just anti abortion but she thinks that women should keep their baby even if it was a product of incest or rape. That is absolutely sickening. We must have a choice or we will turn into Saudia Arabia. We already are with our religious talk. This is not what our founding fathers stood for. They did not write one nation under god according to Palin they did which shows that she doesn't know the history of our country. How embarrassing. I bet foreigners know more about the history our country than Palin.

So what she has 5 kids that does not help the country in any way. In fact it is rather reckless of her to have that many kids given the rising population of the world. If one like kids go adopt and help the world as opposed to become a burden.
These are the topics family values, small town values, working mom all that are distracting the country.

Sarah Palin has a BA degree. She has no background in law. She is very secretive just like Dick Cheney and his entourage. She is a woman and liked by "men" because she says what they want to hear. She is not well traveled. Our country is an open society. The constitution is one of the best in the world. Our country has all kinds of people from all different backgrounds we need highly intelligent people in the office; leaders who are going to represent us and have a positive influence in the world. Someone who is global not a small town hockey mom. That does not serve us. That does not help our current reputation around the world. We don't need soap opera in the white house. We are saturated with sex and gossip talk. We need to see beyond the obvious. Please don't ruin our great country by picking someone twisted like Palin. Please.

Sent by Tay | 5:02 PM | 9-18-2008

I agree with the other commenters who were disappointed in this show. The lone voice questioning Palin wasn't very articulate or passionate and seemed to be there just to represent minority women. More balance would have been nice. No one got called on making inaccurate statements, except the once. I know so many woman who are up in arms over the selection of this woman. I would have loved to have heard a more lively and impassioned discussion -- this was too much like the pap we hear on FoxNews.

Sent by Ann | 9:29 PM | 9-18-2008

She scares the crap out of me. It frightens me to the core what our nation will become if she is elected VP. Barefoot & pregnant behind the kitchen sink comes to mind. I cannot WAIT to vote for Obama. And if he loses, I'm moving to Canada or Europe. Seriously.

Sent by Jamie | 12:00 PM | 9-19-2008

My daughter indicated if the McCain Palin ticket win, she is leaving the USA. Is this what we want for our young people, a country in which our political folk cause us to want to leave the United States?

Sent by Jere | 5:52 PM | 9-19-2008

It seems that what most people here think disqualifies Palin is that she hasn't killed any of her own offspring. There is more concern about her hunting wolves. Hey, she killed a wolf, I know it wasn't her own baby like you folks prefer but she still killed something. Isn't that enough?

Sent by Cliif | 11:30 PM | 9-19-2008

Suzanne wrote:

* a lack of compassion for traditional women's issues

* choosing irrational faith over scientific evidence when determining public policy

What are traditional women's issues. Traditional women do not have abortions, it is not part of the American tradition. Only part of our sick post modern society.

What is more irrational than evolution. From evolution proceeds the idea that one race is more advanced than another, ie, there is a master race. From religion we get, "All men are Created equal and endowed by their Creator with certain inalienable rights, the right to life liberty, and the pursuit of hapiness." Which rationality do you prefer?

Sent by Clifford | 6:24 PM | 9-24-2008

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