Since John McCain picked Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin as his vice-presidential running mate, details of her career and family life have been scrutinized closely. Anchorage Daily News columnist Michael Carey has been following Palin since she became a candidate for governor.
Palin's speech to the Republican National Convention drew a huge television audience. But some of the most noted comments, which attacked Barack Obama and the Democrats, didn't ring true, Carey said.
The partisan attacks, Carey said, were "probably inserted by some guys who think they're very smart and are from Washington."
In Carey's view, Palin's "biggest problem in Alaska has been with the most conservative elite Republicans and the oil industry. It hasn't been with the Democrats. "She's worked well with the Democrats in the Legislature."
Still, Carey said, Palin's ready-for-primetime performance didn't surprise him. In televised debates, "it was quite clear that she was very, very good. And whether she was schooled or was sort of a natural in it, I never figured out," Carey said.
"During the campaign, it was the same kind of thing. She came from nowhere and did very, very well."