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September 2, 08

NEWS / John McCain Chooses Alaska Governor as Running Mate Sarah Palin will be first woman on Republican n


John McCain Chooses Alaska Governor as Running Mate

Sarah Palin will be first woman on Republican national ballot

By Jane Morse
Staff Writer

Washington -- Republican presidential candidate John McCain has chosen Sarah Palin, currently the governor of Alaska, as his running mate.

Palin, who would be the first woman to run on a Republican presidential ticket, also would be the first Alaskan to appear on a national ballot. In 2006 she became the first female governor of Alaska after serving six years as mayor of Wasilla City, Alaska.

Standing with McCain at a Republican political rally in Dayton, Ohio, August 29, Palin said she was taking the podium almost 88 years to the day since American women won the right to vote. She credited Hillary Clinton and Geraldine Ferraro as having led the way in “cracking the glass ceiling” that has kept women out of the nation’s highest leadership positions.

Clinton, despite a fierce campaign, lost the Democratic presidential nomination to Barack Obama. Ferraro was a vice presidential candidate and running mate to Democrat Walter Mondale, who ran an unsuccessful campaign for president in 1984.

McCain, celebrating his 72nd birthday, called 44-year-old Palin “exactly who this country needs.” He praised her ability to fight corruption and “entrenched bureaucracy,” and cited her working-class roots and her ability to understand the problems of working people.

Palin described herself as just an ordinary “hockey mom” living with her family in Alaska when she took an active role in the Parent Teacher Association at her children’s school. This led to a position on the City Council, and, eventually to the mayor’s office and a governorship.

Palin’s anti-abortion stance is a plus, political analysts say, in retaining McCain’s conservative supporters. Palin is a mother of five children -- two sons and three daughters. Her older son serves in the U.S. Army and will be deployed to Iraq soon; her younger son, born in April 2008, has Down syndrome, a congenital chromosomal disorder characterized by physical and mental disabilities. Her husband, Todd Palin, is a production operator in oil fields on the North Slope of Alaska.

McCain praised Palin’s policies as governor of Alaska, saying she was taking the lead in reducing America’s dependence on foreign oil.
Sarah Palin (AP Images)
Alaska Governor Sarah Palin

As Alaska’s governor, Palin championed a law that licensed TransCanada Alaska to build a natural gas pipeline from Prudhoe Bay on Alaska’s North Slope to Canada. Expected to be completed in 10 years, it would be the largest construction project in the history of America, moving some 4.5 billion cubic feet of natural gas per day.

Palin also created Alaska’s Petroleum Systems Integrity Office to provide oversight and maintenance of oil and gas equipment, facilities and infrastructure, and the Climate Change Sub-Cabinet to prepare a climate change strategy for Alaska. She also helped revise Alaska’s ethics laws.

President Bush, in an August 29 statement, said Palin is “a proven reformer who is a wise steward of taxpayer dollars and a champion for accountability in government.”

“Governor Palin’s success is due to her dedication to principle and her roll-up-your-sleeves work ethic and serves as a wonderful example of the spirit of America,” Bush said.

“By selecting a working mother with a track record of getting things done, Senator McCain has once again demonstrated his commitment to reforming Washington.”

The nominations of McCain and Palin still must be endorsed officially by delegates to the Republican National Convention. The convention starts September 1 in St. Paul, Minnesota.

Palin’s nomination has created excitement among some women’s groups.

“This is a history-making choice and an exciting moment for women in politics,” said Debbie Walsh, director of the Center for American Women in Politics at Rutgers Universi ty in New Jersey. “After the first woman on a national ticket [Geraldine Ferraro], we’ve waited more than two decades for the second. Sarah Palin’s selection is another important step ahead for women.”

Source: http://www.america.gov/st/elections08-english/2008/August/20080829155057ajesrom0.5963251.html?CP.rss=true

 




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