John Skookum, commenting on Clive Crook’s blog at Atlantic.com, gets what Palin is about:
Sarah Palin, on the other hand, comes from a lower-middle-class family in a little hick town out in the howling wilderness. Though she was a high school basketball star, Title IX had not yet been implemented in all its bean-counting glory, so she had to enter a demeaning beauty pageant to win a scholarship for a fluff degree from a cow college. After her shotgun wedding to a union roughneck, by most people’s lights, she should have ended up a housewife or a waitress. Yet all by herself, she has blazed a path through Alaska politics that is strewn with the dead bodies of powerful and corrupt male politicians who underestimated her.
She negotiated head-to-head with the chiefs of the most powerful oil conglomerates in the world, bent them to her will, and raised their severance taxes almost 30%. She took a natural gas pipeline project across Canada that had been knocking around for 30 or 40 years without any progress, negotiated with the Canadian and US governments, oil and gas corporations, unions, Indian tribes and who can say who else, and had the deal wrapped up in red ribbon in a matter of months. That pipeline will soon be warming American homes in the winter with cheap, clean fuel produced on American soil by American union workers.
And now, after almost a week of pressure and scrutiny that would have driven most people to weeping, trembling catatonia, she delivers this tour-de-force speech that in all likelihood has single-handedly saved the faltering campaign of the old war horse John McCain.
I get the feeling that Sarah Palin is just getting warmed up and there is lot more to come. Obama must have got a sinking feeling in the pit of his stomach when he learned that her teleprompter failed halfway through the speech.
Update: Jonathan Martin’s Blog at the politico claims Palin’s teleprompter did not break.
Perhaps there were moments where it scrolled slightly past her exact point in the speech. But I was sitting in the press section next to the stage, within easy eyeshot of the Teleprompter. I frequently looked up at the machine, and there was no serious malfunction. A top convention planner confirms this morning that there were no major problems.
. One of his commenters responded:
Palin’s difficulties were corroborated here: http://www.politickerca.com/benvandermeer/2124/palin-speech-had-technical-difficulty They were further called “intermittent” here: http://www.newshounds.us/2008/09/04/conflicting_reports_from_fox_on_palin_teleprompter.php I’m going to go on a limb and presume that you were neither reading the teleprompter over her shoulder nor watching the teleprompter exclusively, which suggests you just might have missed some of the alleged difficulties. I’m not calling you a liar or anything like that. I’m just suggesting that you may have rushed to judgment on this one a little early.
Rich Lowry at the Corner said:
I’m told by a McCain aide that the teleprompter operator mistakenly rolled through the applause lines throughout the speech. So he rolled over the first two lines of the next paragraph after applause. But she was unfazed by it.
It wouldn’t take a major malfunction to throw off a teleprompter user; just scrolling lines out of sight would be enough.Kathryn Jean Lopez responded to Lowry, saying:
re: Palin & the Teleprompter
I can vouch for that. I was trying to read along. Some of the improvising, I think, had to do with that. But she clearly knew her speech.
Personally, I did notice her look down at here notes once. At the time i wondered why, because she was using a teleprompter.