So, I have for a very long time ignored the urge to write a column about Sarah Palin because 1. She didn’t need the extra publicity and 2. She seems to do enough damage to herself without me piling on. But there comes a point where I can no longer ignore the urge. I have to ask how anyone – and I do mean anyone – can possibly think this woman is a good representative of Alaska and its values.
So here I am, writing that column.
People have sent me videos of her during one of her many ramblings. There is, or was, a particularly funny one from what looked like her house in the Valley. She is alone and apparently filming herself. She has no script and clearly no one has written out for her what she should say. So, for the better part of ten minutes, she rambles on incoherently about god knows what while turning the camera this way and that to make sure her house and lake get in the shot. Her declarations of love for this state come across as just a bit sketchy. If she wasn’t running to represent Alaska in Congress, it would be funny.
But she is running to represent us and that should scare anyone with any sense of what Alaska needs and what Alaska stands for. We only get one shot at this. We only get one Congressperson. So that person better be damn good. Sarah isn’t. She isn’t even darn good. And were she ever to get to DC, I fear she would resign the minute she was offered more money to be a lobbyist.
She may not want us to, but many of us remember her resignation speech in which she spoke about how she could affect government more on the outside than inside. She then went off to make money, appear on some strange TV shows and get a divorce. At no point do I remember her actually doing anything for the state of Alaska or the nation unless you count being on The Masked Singer.
Turns out, Sarah Palin not only couldn’t keep her commitment to Alaska, but she didn’t even pretend to be doing any good once she quit being governor. She has seemingly spent the time since then attending rallies of conservative voters where she would get up and make feel good speeches that they would eat up. That was it. She gave the speech. She never took a job either in or out of government that would lead anyone to believe she had the skills or commitment needed to be our lone Congressperson.
I didn’t know Don Young personally. But from what I’ve read and seen, I fear that if Sarah is elected to the seat he held for over 50 years, he may feel the need to return and give us all a lecture. Don might never have been the brightest bulb in the box, but Sarah’s dimness makes his bulb glow like the sun.
Mary Peltola seems to be a worker. If nothing else, she spent ten years in the state house without ever resigning to make a difference from outside government. Mary is apparently smart enough to know that working inside the government, with the legislature, across the aisle, is the only way to really make a difference.
It seems to me that the choices are rather stark. We can either vote for a woman who split from Alaska the first chance she got to make a lot of money, or we can choose someone who has proven that she will actually stay the course for Alaska. And again, let me remind you that we only get one shot at this. One congressperson. That’s all Alaska is allowed. Let’s not blow it by electing someone with no credentials, no real understanding of government and how it works and nothing that indicates she would stay the course if better offers came along.
One last thing that has not been noted anywhere in all this political coverage – all the front running politicians for national office from Alaska are women. Now there’s something that should surprise no one familiar with Alaska women. But still. For those of us of the female persuasion, this is a wonderful time to be voting in Alaska elections. No matter who you vote for, a woman will win.