This is no surprise, since McCain’s Republican handlers had to do *something* about unifying the Republican Party around their red-headed stepchild, John McCain, He Who Crosses Party Lines Entirely Too Much in the Senate.
So in having Palin, a self-proclaimed “Hockey Mom” with strong hardline social conservative and Reagan-era economic views, together with McCain, the hope is that they’ll be able to reconstruct the Reagan Coalition — strong Liberty and strong Order folks — that was effectively destroyed under George W. Bush’s watch (hence the 2006 Democratic sweep of Congress) and, thus, push McCain over the top come November.
However, the problem I had was this: she wasn’t talking to anyone who *wasn’t* a hardline conservative Republican. Even though she seemed very articulate explaining her understanding of energy policy — her experience as governer of Alaska shone through here — everything else may as well have come from a RNC brochure. In fact, Joe Lieberman’s speech was more aware of the general electorate — the people whose swing votes will matter come November — than Sarah Palin’s. This, to me, means one thing: McCain have better do an *awesome* job in his acceptance speech this evening, with the view that in order for him to win, he needs to be John McCain as John McCain, not John McCain as Republican.
So Sarah Palin have indeed unified the Republican Party. But she certainly hasn’t unified the American people. On that count, she — and McCain — have a lot of work to do for the next sixty days, if they want to win the White House.