Justin du Coeur (jducoeur) wrote,
Justin du Coeur

Gut reactions to the Palin speech

Overall: not a great speech, but not a terrible one either. Rather disjointed at times -- the first several minutes felt more like an Oscar acceptance speech than a presidential one -- but once she got down to business she generally stayed on-message. She jabbed *very* hard at the Democrats, indeed to the point of coming across as rather nasty at times: she manages to make Biden look like a nice guy by comparison. That's likely necessary in her positon (she can't afford to look weak); we'll see how it plays with the general electorate.

I listened to most of the speech in the car, so I was surprised when I got home that my reaction to seeing her on TV was quite different from hearing her. She's oddly weaker visually than audibly: her body language comes across as much more hectoring to me than her tone alone does.

As for the content -- no real surprises. I'm irritated by the sheer volume of lying and exaggeration it contained about the Democrats, but by now I should expect that of the Republicans. (Mind, I expect some of it from any political campaign: it's just the quantity that annoys me.) It was very much a speech of battle lines, defining a lot of bad guys who she is against: the political establishment, the media, city folk, democrats, etc. I'd love to hear how that plays among the independents: it was an intensely partisan speech in a political environment that has otherwise been focusing on unity.

Her consistent use of "our opponent", never actually naming Obama, feels weirdly smarmy to me, and oddly out of place in a campaign that has often been on a first-name basis otherwise on both sides. I suppose that was done because she's the one person involved who *doesn't* actually know any of the players personally, but it was quite noticeable.

I can't say I *liked* the speech, but it would have been surprising if I did. I'd say that she hit the necessary points, but left plenty of holes that the Democrats have presumably already begun poking into. I don't know if it will win a lot of people over from the center, but it ought to at least help shore up the right wing...
Tags: politics

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