As speculation increases on the VP choice for John McCain, we have begun to hear the traditional denials from the leading candidates. They want to focus on their current job, or they don’t want to presume that they will be one of McCain’s final options. One candidate has offered some refreshing enthusiasm:
Palin would make an interesting choice. She would be the first woman on a major party ticket since Geraldine Ferraro in 1984, assuming Hillary Clinton fails to win the Democratic nomination. Palin could be the first Alaskan on a major-party ticket as well. She’s young and popular in the party, and her pro-life credentials are beyond dispute. She also has a history of demanding better ethics in politics, resigning a position on a state board because of ethical lapses by fellow Republicans.
However, Palin has a few drawbacks as well. She’s younger than Barack Obama and has held the governor’s office for less time than he’s been in the Senate (2006, versus 2004 for Obama). She has not served in elected office above that of mayor prior to her gubernatorial victory. She has not yet been tested in any kind of major-media election process.
Perhaps that’s why she laughs and tells Chris Cillizza that it would be “impossible” for her to get the invitation. She encourages other potential candidates — she toys with but eventually eschews the term “wannabes” — to honestly talk about their ambitions, rather than hide them under faux-modest denials. If Palin can continue to succeed in Alaska, she may find national office a lot more possible in the next few years.