She was combative and she was funny — sometimes snarky — and the crowd here clung to every single word. I can’t help but think she’s a plus on the ticket. And I can’t get over how much she looks like Tina Fey.
“I love those hockey Moms. You know, they say, the difference between a hockey Mom and a pitbull?… Lipstick!”
Update: full text of her speech here.
She talked about her son, Track, going off to Iraq next 9/11. She talked about, “The determination, the resolve and the sheer guts of Senator John McCain.” … “As a mother of one of those troops, that is exactly the kind of man I want as commander-in-chief.”
On her family:
“And in April, my husband Todd and I welcomed our littlest one into the world, a perfectly beautiful baby boy named Trig. From the inside, no family ever seems typical. That’s how it is with us. Our family has the same ups and downs as any other … the same challenges and the same joys.
Sometimes even the greatest joys bring challenge. And children with special needs inspire a special love. To the families of special-needs children all across this country, I have a message: For years, you sought to make America a more welcoming place for your sons and daughters. I pledge to you that if we are elected, you will have a friend and advocate in the White House.”
Her husband is a “proud member” of the Steelworkers Union – applause is kind of interesting given the union-bashing we’ve heard tonight.
Her parents taught her: “This is America and every woman can walk through every door of opportunity.”
She delivered her big line perfectly: “Since our opponents look down on that experience let me explain to them what the job involves. It’s kind of like being a community organizer… except with actual responsibility.”
On Obama and small towns: “We don’t quite know what to make of a candidate who lavishes praise on working people when they are listening, and then talks about how bitterly they cling to their religion and guns when those people aren’t listening. We tend to prefer candidates who don’t talk about us one way in Scranton and another way in San Francisco.”
On her fiscal conservatism as governor of Alaska:
“That luxury jet was over the top… I put it on Ebay.”
“I fought to bring about the largest private-sector infrastructure project in North American history. And when that deal was struck, we began a nearly forty billion dollar natural gas pipeline to help lead America to energy independence. That pipeline, when the last section is laid and its valves are opened, will lead America one step farther away from dependence on dangerous foreign powers that do not have our interests at heart.”
And this is the part where she tries to demonstrate that even though she apparently only got her passport last year, she knows about foreign policy.
“With Russia wanting to control a vital pipeline in the Caucasus, and to divide and intimidate our European allies by using energy as a weapon, we cannot leave ourselves at the mercy of foreign suppliers.
To confront the threat that Iran might seek to cut off nearly a fifth of world energy supplies … or that terrorists might strike again at the Abqaiq facility in Saudi Arabia … or that Venezuela might shut off its oil deliveries … we Americans need to produce more of our own oil and gas.
And take it from a gal who knows the North Slope of Alaska: we’ve got lots of both.
“Our opponents say, again and again, that drilling will not solve all of America’s energy problems – as if we all didn’t know that already. But the fact that drilling won’t solve every problem is no excuse to do nothing at all.”
“Starting in January, in a McCain-Palin administration, we’re going to lay more pipelines … build more new-clear** plants … create jobs with clean coal … and move forward on solar, wind, geothermal, and other alternative sources.”
[** Yes, they spelled it new-clear in the text of her speech that was sent out.]
On Obama: “But listening to him speak, it’s easy to forget that this is a man who has authored two memoirs but not a single major law or reform – not even in the state senate.”
The crowd loved her speech. They really loved it when she got on the stage, her baby in her arms, and the rest of the family all around. Now McCain has gone up and the stadium is electrified.
McCain: “Don’t you think we made the right choice for the next vice-president of the United States? And what a beautiful family.”
Maybe I’m the only reporter in Canada to think this, and maybe it’s because I’m here in the Republican bubble, but I think this pick brings a lot of pluses to the ticket — mobilizing the pro-life and Christian base at a time when Obama was enjoying an “enthusiasm” edge in on-the-ground organizing; rejeuvenating the ticket that looked like an old white guy; and piquing the interest of women… I’ll be surprised if they get a lot of the hard-core Hillary voters — they’re too far apart on the issues, but after watching this confident and combative speech, and seeing the hearty endorsement from the security uber-hawks like Giuliani, I think a lot of independent women are going to tune in to hear more from Palin.