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Posted by on Oct 12, 2008 in Politics | 34 comments

McCain-Palin: What the Future Holds

Count me as still among those who feel that 23 days is still a lifetime in politics, and it’s far too early to begin dancing on the political graves of John McCain and Sarah Palin. But, with that said, the outlook is growing fairly bleak. Assuming that the “conventional wisdom” turns out to be correct for a change and the Obama-Biden ticket carries the day on November 4, what does the future hold for the two candidates on the GOP side? My old partner Ron Beasley takes a look at this question over at Newshoggers.

So what does it all mean? That’s easy – they both know they are going to lose. As a result they have different goals. The 72 year old McCain is looking at how history will see him – his legacy. The governor from Alaska is looking for a career as a red meat baiter on FOX – look out Hannity and O’Reilly, the “cuda” has her eye on your job.

It’s an interesting perspective. McCain may be looking a bit rough around the edges after two straight years on the campaign trail, but he doesn’t necessarily need to head to the barn on November 5th. Even in the midst of this rough and tumble campaign, there are no signs that his popularity is sagging in Arizona and, providing his health remains good, there’s no reason he couldn’t continue on to be one of the senior members of the upper chamber for years to come.

Peering into Palin’s future may be a tougher nut to crack. I’m not sure how serious Ron was being about a spot on Fox News, but the Governor will still have a couple of years left to serve out in her first term in Alaska. Back home, she’s taken a hit in her previously stellar popularity numbers and the glaring spotlight of national attention has brought up a number of questions about her behavior in office. These include not only Troopergate, but lingering questions on the Mat-Maid dairy, questionable choices in governmental appointees, cronyism and a Wasilla Sports Complex that’s turned into a boondoggle. Also, if she’s no longer shooting for the VP’s office, will her newfound embrace of fiscal conservatism and rejection of earmarking continue, or will she revert back to her old habits of record setting per capita pork consumption? Much of that will determine how long her shelf life might extend in national politics.

Fox News? Hrmmm… you never know.