Sen. Joe Lieberman, I-Conn. arrives in Minneapolis for the 2008 Republican National Convention.
As little as two days before he made his VP announcement, John McCain wanted to pick friend and Democratic turncoat Joe Lieberman, according to a report in The New York Times. But as in so many other decisions in his campaign, the alleged maverick caved to the far right of his party, which threatened to sink a McCain-Lieberman ticket at the convention. In the end he chose a woman he barely knew.
Although Team McCain insists it did a thorough job of vetting the Alaska governor, the planeloads of Republicans on their way to Wasilla tell a different story, as do the headlines, many more of which are sure to come.
New York Times:
At the least, Republicans close to the campaign said it was increasingly apparent that Ms. Palin had been selected as Mr. McCain’s running mate with more haste than McCain advisers initially described.
Up until midweek last week, some 48 to 72 hours before Mr. McCain introduced Ms. Palin at a Friday rally in Dayton, Ohio, Mr. McCain was still holding out the hope that he could choose a good friend, Senator Joseph I. Lieberman, independent of Connecticut, a Republican close to the campaign said. Mr. McCain had also been interested in another favorite, former Gov. Tom Ridge of Pennsylvania.
But both men favor abortion rights, anathema to the Christian conservatives who make up a crucial base of the Republican Party. As word leaked out that Mr. McCain was seriously considering the men, the campaign was bombarded by outrage from influential conservatives who predicted an explosive floor fight at the convention and vowed rejection of Mr. Ridge or Mr. Lieberman by the delegates.