In picking Sarah Palin as their Vice President candidate, McCain and the Republicans were clearly desperate. They knew if they picked a standard candidate, they would lose. So throwing caution to the wind, they picked a radical who had as many poster child credentials as possible while still having a bit of experience:
- former beauty pageant participant (capable of walking, talking, and being pretty)
- politician from a frontier state (Alaska)
- hockey mom
- disabled child
- working mom
- teenage daughter who got pregnant on her watch
- son about to fight and perhaps die in Iraq
- sheer novelty and sensationalism of such an unlikely choice
By picking such an under dog (albeit a dangerous pit bull that wears lipstick), I think they are trying to gain as much of the sympathy vote as possible while making it hard for others to critique her while she in turn slams others around in an atrocious hardball manner.
If you look at her actual experience, it is quite small compared to everyone else. She has been the mayor of a small town in Alaska (population under 10,000) and the governor of a state with only 670,000 people -- about the size of the city of Charlotte North Carolina and smaller than 46 of the US states (only North Dakota, Vermont, and Wyoming are smaller).