Writing about the coverage of the Palin selection, Dan Froomkin of the WaPo says:
One of the problems with modern political journalism is that when something manifestly absurd takes place, as long as there are people willing to argue both sides, our top reporters feel obliged to treat it as deserving of serious debate…
What possible reason is there to nominate someone so lacking in gravitas for the vice presidency? In this case, of course, it couldn’t be more obvious that Palin’s selection has everything to do with politics and nothing to do with governance. Palin’s gender and her hard-right credentials were clearly seen by McCain’s top advisers as just what the campaign needed.
Whether that was a clever or suicidal political calculation remains to be seen. It’s certainly looking more and more like it was a reckless one. But it doesn’t just strain credulity – it pulverizes it – to suggest that she is the best and most qualified person McCain could find for the job.
It’s a tremendous failure of political reporting that such patent spin from McCain supporters is being treated like a supportable position. By contrast, it seems to me that anyone suggesting that Palin was selected for anything other than political reasons should be considered presumptively a liar from this point on.