The pick of Sarah Palin as McCain’s running mate tells me that reproductive rights are a massive issue for him. I’ve been saying from the get-go that McCain has been screwed insofar as he has to appear strongly anti-woman for the base, but pro-woman for the low information swing voters. Lieberman, I think, could have pulled that off. But this is simpler—a female anti-choicer, a straight-up sexist colluder. The base will be appeased that she shares their anti-woman sympathies, but the swing voter will simply see that she’s a woman and assume that she can’t be anti-woman. Sadly, as we feminists know all too well dealing with those women who collude with sexism, it isn’t at all true or inevitable that a woman will be a feminist.
This is also a sign that the Republicans are taking all their cues from the Democrats this election. The Democratic convention is a non-stop discussion of women’s rights to reproductive health care, equal pay, and freedom from violence. Republicans grab their asses and pick a female V.P., hoping that they can get in on some of that action.