Friday, September 12, 2008

McCain gets schooled on The View: "Sarah the Reformer" tale doesn't fly

John McCain got absolutely schooled by the women on ABC's "The View" today. Barbara Walters led the charge with great assists by Joy Behar and Whoopi Goldberg. They grilled McCain on everything from his pick of Sarah Palin as VP to the slimy ads his campaign has been running. One of the best exchanges came when Walters pressed McCain about Palin's comment (during her interview with Charlie Gibson) that she was chosen by McCain to reform the government.

Walters: "You have been in Washington, Senator, for 22 years as a Congressman and a Senator. The Republican Party has been in power for the last eight years. So my question...who is it that Governor Palin is going to reform? You?"

McCain: ..."she'll reform all of Washington".

Walters: "How"

McCain: "Just like she did in Alaska."

Walters: "What is she going to reform specifically Senator?"

McCain: "Well, first of all earmark spending, which she vetoed half a billion dollars worth in the state of Alaska."

Walters: "She also took some earmarks".

McCain: "Not as Governor she didn't. The fact is she was a reform Governor. She took on a Republican Governor, of her own, an incumbent Governor of her own party and defeated him. She sold the airplane. She fired the chef. ..and the big point is she reformed government in Alaska."

Is that the best McCain can do? The truth is Palin did ask for earmarks as Governor, including almost $200 million this year and at least $160.5 million in earmarks for the state in 2008. And as everyone but Senator McCain knows by now, she didn't sell the plane on eBay - it sold for a $600,000 loss through an aviation broker. But even if she sold it, does that make her a reformer?

McCain's other (ridiculous) proof point of Palin as a reformer extraordinaire is that she fired a chef. Wrong again -- the chef was transferred, not fired, and is still preparing meals in Juneau for government employees. According to an item in this ADN article from 1/20/08:

"Stefani Marnon was first reassigned as a ‘constituent relations assistant’ in the governor's office and later to the state museum. Earwigs report she's finally landed where they really appreciate a good chef: the Legislative Lounge. Lawmakers were smacking their lips in anticipation, according to Sen. Kim Elton's newsletter."

So that leaves the fact that Palin defeated a very unpopular incumbent Governor as proof that she's a reformer. It's time for the McCain campaign to reform the tale they're spinning about Palin since it couldn't even pass the smell test on a daytime talkshow.


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