This isn’t going to be a long post, but more of something to think about.

We all know that McCain’s hastily choosing Sarah Palin as his runningmate has led to a steady flow of information as the media does McCain’s vetting for him.

While I love the fact that we’re all included in the process, and therefore included in discovering the titillating tidbits that seem to surface with each passing hour, we’re learning more and more about McCain’s ability to make snap decisions and what it might look like in a presidential setting — none too pretty.

But as I was going through my RSS reader, I found a post on Hotline’s On Call blog that contained an insightful comment from a reader:

“Country First” as campaign/convention slogan was rolled out a couple of weeks ago. Seems this slogan was crafted in preparation of and to justify picking Joe Lieberman – another maverick that has put his country ahead of his party (as their story goes).

That McCain caved in to the conservative wing of the Republican Party, dumping Lieberman at the last minute to go with Palin, seems to put politics and party ahead of country. If Palin isn’t qualified to govern then she is clearly on the ticket for electoral benefit only – again, party first, McCain first, etc. Is this not the story to cover? Is this not the real point of the incomplete vetting story? A snap decision being back-filled with post-facto vetting, all this junk about how she’s a reformer, took on Republicans, etc.

In his first presidential test of strength – to stand up to the party he claims to be willing to stand up to, McCain flinched. If Obama passing over Hillary was spun for political benefit by Republicans, it seems Dems could also spin McCain passing over Lieberman to weaken the “Country First” frame.

I, too, think there needs to be more focus on the “Country first” theme. And it would make sense that this was chosen for a Ridge or a Lieberman runningmate more than someone like Palin. (Elisabeth Bumiller’s piece in today’s Times has more on this.)

While they might be selling it as a “gut” decision he made, perhaps his campaign is covering up the fact that it didn’t live up to it’s own “patriotic” motto. They caved to the Religious Right, placing party first, and in the process, they picked a candidate who, at one time, was “Alaska first.”

How in the world is this passed off as good judgment? It looks like an ugly mess to me — one that places anything BUT the country first. Perhaps Obama/Dems should look into this line of attack.

Any thoughts?

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