Wednesday, September 3, 2008

Video of Governor Sarah Palin's RNC Speech

Palin's Home Run
Is there still an enthusiasm gap?
September 4, 2008 1:05 a.m.

St. Paul

Twenty years after Ronald Reagan left office, Republicans who have long missed him may have found a future Margaret Thatcher. If John McCain wins, conservatives may find one of the most enduring accomplishments of his term will have been what he did before it started: helping to fill the Republican Party's future talent bench with such a fresh and compelling figure.

Sarah Palin is a conviction politician, a naturally compelling speaker and someone who can relate to her audience on very human terms. America has just learned why Mrs. Palin enjoys the highest approval ratings of any governor in America.

Liberal commentators glumly noted the thunderous applause in the convention hall last night. But they could do precious little to attack. Even Keith Olbermann, MSNBC's official attack dog, could muster only this as commentary on Mrs. Palin's performance: "People who like this sort of thing will find this ... the sort of thing they like."

Mrs. Palin accomplished several things last night. First, she introduced herself and her story to the American people in a compelling and warm manner, complete with effective pictures of her proud family. Secondly, she praised John McCain's leadership, service to country and independence in a way that made him come alive. Thirdly, she effectively deflected the media and liberal criticism of her by saying they really represented an attack on the small-town and suburban values she grew up with. Lastly, she skewered Barack Obama with gusto but without meanness. Her line about her job as a small-town mayor being "sort of like a 'community organizer,' except that you have actual responsibilities" brought the hall to its feet in a frenzy.

Some hard-bitten political observers I know were uncharacteristically impressed with the Palin speech. Hal Stratton, a former Attorney General of New Mexico, wrote to me as follows: "That's what we out west call openin' a whole can of whip a— on your opponents."

Other observers were more restrained, but still impressed. "She passed her first major test, and if the reaction of the crowd in the hall is any indication, with flying colors," says Peter Brown, the deputy director of the Quinnipiac Poll. "So much for the comparisons with Dan Quayle, who couldn't have given that speech if his life depended on it. Obviously, Sarah Palin probably went down better in Warren, Michigan than she did in Washington, D.C. -- but that was the whole point of her speech and her candidacy." Indeed, while Mrs. Palin certainly won't swing any deeply blue states in John McCain's direction, she may have an impact in swaying independent voters as well as boosting GOP turnout in swing states such as Colorado, Nevada and Michigan.

One of the standard operating theories this Election Year is that Barack Obama and the Democrats are much more energized, excited and willing to work hard for victory in November.

After Sarah Palin's remarkably effective speech, I don't think any pundits or politicians will be able to count on a decisive Democratic enthusiasm edge. Sarah Palin electrified the hall, and from what I can tell from my e-mail inbox that excitement is being replicated in living rooms across the country.

See all of today's editorials and op-eds, plus video commentary, on Opinion Journal.

And to read more stories like this one, please subscribe to Political Diary.

The Speech
What Palin wrought.
by William Kristol
09/04/2008 2:00:00 AM

NOW WE SEE why the liberal establishment has been trying for the last few days to destroy Sarah Palin. She is a threat to their hopes to take the White House this year, a threat to their broader claims to speak for youth, for women, and for the future, and a threat to their attempt to control the high ground in the culture war. After her stunning success last night, some in the liberal media may retire from the ring for a while. Others, with the threat now even more evident, may redouble their assaults and become even more desperate and vicious. Surely they'll fail.

A star was born last night--but I won't belabor that fact, especially since it was the title of my New York Times column Monday. Nor will I analyze the whole speech, which I'm sure will be ably done by others. I'll just make three points.

1. I've heard one or two Palin skeptics acknowledge that it was a good speech, but then say--well, another nominee could have given a similarly good speech. Actually, no. The speech was so effective because it was given by someone who is, at once: a relative unknown, an executive not a legislator, a real reformer, a middle American who made it on her own, an outsider
who was greeted with hostility by the D.C. establishment--and, yes, a woman. Obviously, another nominee could have given a good if different speech. But what made last night's speech special--what may have made last night an inflection point in this campaign, and even in American politics beyond Nov. 4--depended on the peculiar combination of qualities Sarah Palin brought to the table. Her speech was as far as a speech could be from being a generic one. Only Sarah Palin could have given it. The fact that she had the help of an excellent speechwriter, Matthew Scully, doesn't change the fact that this was in a precise way, and I'd almost say a profound way, Sarah Palin's speech.

2. The attack on Obama was very deft. Palin went right for Obama's fundamental weakness--that he's never done anything impressive. (And by giving such a good speech, she partly undermined his claim to be the only one who could speak impressively.) For example, consider this line--which I predict will be remembered two months from now: "I guess a small-town mayor is sort of like a 'community organizer,' except that you have actual responsibilities." This deflates all the sanctimonious praise of Obama at the Democratic convention for all his selfless years as a community organizer. And if you take away the community organizing, Obama's just a career politician, one "who has authored two memoirs but not a single major law or reform," one of those who has used "change to promote their careers." What's left of Obama's résumé, and his claim to deserve the presidency? Not much.

3. Don't underestimate the power of this statement: "To the families of special needs children all across this country, I have a message: For years, you sought to make America a more welcoming place for your sons and daughters. I pledge to you that if we are elected, you will have a friend and advocate in the White House." The McCain campaign should flesh this out in policy terms, should not get worried by the inevitable attacks on McCain for voting (as he must have) for some budget resolution or other that would have cut (or not increased as much as some wanted) some special-needs programs, and just keep on emphasizing that Palin will take the lead on these issues, and McCain will see to it she gets the support, budgetary and otherwise, she needs. This would be real compassionate conservatism, and would be good both for conservatism and for the country.

William Kristol is editor of THE WEEKLY STANDARD.

How's Palin Playing in Alaska? Well, Funny You Should Ask ...

Andrew Romano

ANCHORAGE, Alaska--Here at the Peanut Farm restaurant in Anchorage they are eating up Sarah Palin's words with more gusto than the huge steaks they sling.

When they cut away to a shot of little Piper, Palin's 6-year-old, stroking the head of her napping baby brother Trig, people here laughed so hard, the guy at the bar next to me wheezed in his burrito and started crying. That's when Palin was talking about the political power of PTA presidents.

The crowd here at the bar, including her sister Heather, who is in the custody of a CNN crew, are riveted. When she makes a crack about the only difference between a pit bull and a hockey mom being lipstick (same joke she told me a year ago) some women at the bar nodded in agreement. "It's the truth!" another howled.

Having spent much time covering Palin over the past year, she seemed like the longest of long shots. Tonight, though, she's all pitch-perfect timing and delivery. A populist star is born.

UPDATE, 11:13 p.m.: The Peanut Farm has erupted with shouts of "Sarah, Sarah, Sarah!!!" as Palin raises her arms in triumph and her family fills the stage. They're gonna be talking about this one for a long time here. The rapture over Palin, with McCain standing awkwardly by, reminds me of the first time Prince Charles took Lady Di for a walkabout.

UPDATE, 11:16 p.m.: Here at the Peanut Farm my fellow diners are putting their hands over their hearts and singing along with the National Anthem.

September 04, 2008

Palin Rules, Libs Drool

By Kyle-Anne Shiver

A couple of hours before Sarah Palin rocked the house in St. Paul last night, I caught a few minutes of Bill O'Reilly's interview with Sally Quinn, who is front and center among the female media elites chastising Sarah Palin for her supposed inability to manage the demands of the Vice Presidency with the role of nurturer in chief among her own brood.

We women are not known for our capacity to mind our own business.

As soon as I saw Sarah Palin take to the podium, though, Quinn and her minions' disdain for the tough-as-nails-smooth-as-satin Alaskan governor became crystal clear.

They cannot stand her because she easily makes 4 or 5 of them. Palin is able to accomplish, with one arm seemingly tied behind her back, more real work with less complaint than nearly all the working liberal women in America. From liberal women, one hears nothing but complaint and woe-is-me tales of how unbearably hard their lives as women have been.

Sarah Palin doesn't wallow; she doesn't entertain pity for her lot.

She loves being a woman. She loves being a mother. She loves her husband. She loves America. And she certainly does not shy from hard work on the people's behalf.

On those down-to-earth, solid-gold issues Sarah Palin made her speech last night to an all-American embrace that will not be soon forgotten.

Palin rules; Libs drool.

When Barack Obama's campaign unleashed their first stab at Palin's candidacy last Friday, by condescendingly mocking her experience as mayor of a town of 9,000, they opened the door to this Palin zinger:

"I was mayor of my hometown. And since our opponents in this presidential election seem to look down on that experience, let me explain to them what the job involves. I guess a small-town mayor is sort of like a ‘community organizer,' except that you have actual responsibilities."

This line was delivered by Sarah Palin with such amazing aplomb that I wondered how many would be brave enough to point out how far this woman has surpassed the hyped-up charisma of Barack Obama. Not only does she best him on the experience issue, but she easily outflanks him on stage appeal. Not bad for one night's work.

Palin rules; Libs drool.

On what is shaping up to be one of the most important issues of this presidential campaign, Governor Palin, artfully reminded Americans that she has presided over the government of one of our Nation's most important energy suppliers -- Alaska. And she addressed the drilling issue head on with an intro that should have shamed Nancy Pelosi into hiding under a desk somewhere. Governor Palin reminded Americans that "our opponents say again and again that drilling won't solve all of our energy problems - as if we didn't know that already."

No-nonsense Palin then proceeded to lay it out for the voters plain and simple, reminding us all that we must begin somewhere soon or saddle our children with an even worse energy situation:

"...the fact that drilling won't solve every problem is no excuse to do nothing at all. Starting in January, in a McCain-Palin administration, we're going to lay more more nuclear plants...create jobs with clean coal...and move forward on solar, wind, geothermal, and other alternative sources. We need American energy resources, brought to you by American ingenuity, and produced by American workers."

With impeccable timing and grace, Sarah Palin wowed Americans from coast to coast, injecting a sense of humor and small-town authenticity that even caused somewhat reserved Republicans to herald her with hearty applause and raucous cheers of "U.S.A! U.S.A.! U.S.A.!"

Palin rules all right, and if Libs aren't drooling, it might be because they haven't even figured out yet what has hit them.

As the mother of a son, who is profoundly deaf, I was brought to grateful tears myself when Governor Palin took a moment to mention our special-needs population. Acknowledging the difficulties that special-needs kids and their families face in "making America a more welcome place," Mrs. Palin promised that when she becomes Vice President, all of us "special" families will have "a friend and advocate in the White House." My own heart did swell at that and nearly burst, simply for that moment of recognition, as I have learned from our son that citizens with extra challenges show us all facets of the human spirit that we would otherwise never see.

Democrats may talk a good game when it comes to love; Sarah Palin lives a life of love.

Big difference. Talk is cheap; real love ain't.

For 40 minutes, Sarah Palin delivered one perfectly-timed zinger after another, especially at Barack Obama. The crowd seemed to be wrapped around her little finger every minute.

Pow. Pow. Pow. Without so much as breaking a nail.

My favorite lines of the speech, however, had to do with Senator Obama's two faces, the one he shows you when he's with you vs. the one he shows when he's not. Capitalizing once again on her humble, small-town upbringing, Mrs. Palin wowed the crowd thusly:

" small towns, we don't quite know what to make of a candidate who lavishes praise on working people when they are listening, and then talks about how bitterly they cling to their religion and guns when those people aren't listening."

"We tend to prefer candidates who don't talk about us one way in Scranton and another way in San Francisco."

We may rest assured of this, my conservative friends. Wherever Barack Obama was listening to Sarah Palin, he got this message loud and clear. That joke going around in Alaska about the difference between a hockey mom and a pit-bull being only in the lipstick, certainly rang true last night in Minnesota. And Barack Obama has now felt her teeth. He knows the lady bites.

She smiles while she's doing it, wearing a pencil skirt and heels.

And I'm thinking that by the time November rolls around, citified Barack may want to invest in Johnson's Band-Aid stock.

Kyle-Anne Shiver is a frequent contributor to American Thinker. She is blogging daily at

1 comment:

Joe of St. Thérèse said...

Sarah rocks! Obama is going to defeat himself (if he hasn't already done so already)