Politics, not principle

Matthew Hoy
By Matthew Hoy on September 4, 2008

Compare and contrast The New York Times editorial page then and now.

Then:

Where is it written that only senators are qualified to become President?...Or where is it written that mere representatives aren’t qualified, like Geraldine Ferraro of Queens?...Where is it written that governors and mayors, like Dianne Feinstein of San Francisco, are too local, too provincial?...Presidential candidates have always chosen their running mates for reasons of practical demography, not idealized democracy…. What a splendid system, we say to ourselves, that takes little-known men, tests them in high office and permits them to grow into statesmen. . . . Why shouldn’t a little-known woman have the same opportunity to grow?. . . .the indispensable credential for a Woman Who is the same as for a Man Who – one who helps the ticket.

Now:

As far as we can tell, Mr. McCain and his aides did almost no due diligence before choosing Ms. Palin, raising serious questions about his management skills. The fact that Ms. Palin’s 17-year-old daughter is pregnant is irrelevant to her candidacy. There are, however, very serious questions about her political past and her ideology, including her links to a party advocating Alaska’s secession from the nation.

If Mr. McCain wanted to break with his party’s past and choose the Republicans’ first female presidential candidate, there a number of politicians out there with far greater experience and stature than Ms. Palin, who has been in Alaska’s Statehouse for less than two years.

Before she was elected governor, she was mayor of a tiny Anchorage suburb, where her greatest accomplishment was raising the sales tax to build a hockey rink. According to Time magazine, she also sought to have books banned from the local library and threatened to fire the librarian.

For Mr. McCain to go on claiming that Mr. Obama has too little experience to be president after almost three years in the United States Senate is laughable now that he has announced that someone with no national or foreign policy experience is qualified to replace him, if necessary.

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The @sdutOpinion Editorial pages used to be fairly mainstream conservative. When I applied for a letters editor opening there in the mid-00s, I was asked if there's an editorial I wouldn't write. I replied: a pro-abortion one. 1/

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