Saturday, August 30, 2008

Petty and stupid

OK, so there's a ton of reaction to Senator McCain's pick of Sarah Palin as his vice-presidential running mate. Opinions, pro and con. This is natural, to be expected, part of the process. However, it is amazing how petty and (frankly) stupid some of the reaction is e.g. go trawl through the HuffPo articles and reader feedback. An example

Apparently Palin was earlier asked by Larry Kudlow if she would be interested in the second spot on the ticket. Her response was "As for that VP talk all the time, I’ll tell you, I still can’t answer that question until somebody answers for me what is it exactly that the VP does every day? I’m used to being very productive and working real hard in an administration. We want to make sure that that VP slot would be a fruitful type of position, especially for Alaskans and for the things that we’re trying to accomplish up here for the rest of the U.S., before I can even start addressing that question.”

Well, a number of dimwits over at the HuffPo are hyperventilating over this - a sample comment "Let's see here now. We have someone running to be Vice-President of the United States who does not know what the Vice-President does. Out-bleeding-standing!"

Egad, how ridiculous can you be? She knows what the Vice President does - exactly as much or as little as the President allows. The constitution only specifies that the VP "shall be President of the Senate, but shall have no Vote, unless they be evenly divided" (See article I, section 3); and has a duty to receive from the states the tally of electoral ballots cast for president and vice president and to open the certificates "in the Presence of the Senate and House of Representatives," so that they can be counted (see article II, section 1).

It is clear to this blogger that her point was that her level of interest would depend on what role a President McCain would devolve to his VP - if merely attendance at funerals she would have no interest; if a more substantive role then she probably would be interested.

There are plenty of valid criticisms that can be leveled against Sarah Palin, without making up stuff out of whole cloth (e.g. she doesn't know what the vice-president does) or making gross exaggerations. Reactions like these say more about the intelligence of the poster than of the candidate. Ack !

Vice President of the United States (President of the Senate)