Tuesday, March 11, 2008

Hmmm ... can a new mom run for office?

Well, my initial reaction when I heard the word that Sarah Palin had announced that she was seven-months pregnant was - well, there goes that potential VP. After reading a lot of the other reactions on the web, I have to admit, I'm chagrined that that was my reaction. After all, I have nothing against working mothers. Had one myself. :-) So that wasn't it. I'm not sure exactly why I assumed that would knock her out of VP consideration. Most new mothers get a month at most, and she'll have that by the time of the convention. The job of running for office is quite time consuming, but her baby can travel with her. So what is it? Would most Americans have the same initial reaction? Would they react negatively to a new mom running for the second highest office in the land? Would McCain look like out-of-touch if that's the reason he doesn't chose her? (Granted her skimpy record could give him a gracious way out of what's turning into a popularity contest.)

Does her pregnancy make her more or less electable? After all, that's the real meat of the question here. Doesn't matter whether it shouldn't matter - it will. I had a really hard time swallowing it when Kay Baily Hutchison adopted children after she was already 60. On the one hand, those kids will have a life now that they could only have dreamed of before. On the other, she was a little on the old side for young kids. To me, it showed some lack of judgment. Maybe not a lack of love, but definitely judgment. Palin's younger, she's pregnant, she has some momentum behind her for winning the nomination. Haven't seen anyone calling her on judgment on this one so far. So, will she appeal to other women trying to have it all? Will the baby be too much of an upstage risk for McCain?

Guess we'll have to wait and see how it plays out.

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