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Sen. John McCain is announcing that he has selected Alaska Governor Sarah Palin as his Vice Presidential Running Mate. Gov. Palin is now the second female vice-presidential candidate to represent one of the major parties.
Social conservatives are pleased with this selection, as am I. Gov. Palin is pro-life in both practice and policy. There are also some reports that she served as a member of Feminists for Life which played a significant role in Supreme Court litigation involving the issue of abortion. Reports are also beginning to surface that Gov. Palin was active in the Fellowship of Christian Athletes when she was in school.
One of the most interesting aspects of this selection is the issue of experience. This will be particularly interesting in light of some of the criticism directed towards Sen. Obama’s level of experience. It will be worth watching how this plays out in the next several days.
One thing is for sure in this selection, and that is that John McCain did an analysis of where the base of the Republican Party is. Even a maverick has to analyze the base of his political support. Within the context of the Republican Party, the pro-life issue has been non-negotiable. The selection of Gov. Sarah Palin as a Vice Presidential Running Mate confirms Sen. McCain’s understanding of this. This also makes sense in light of the fact that Sen. McCain himself has a strong pro-life voting record.
I mentioned in a previous post that a sharp contrast on Supreme Court nominees will now be in play. Sen. Obama and Sen. Biden both voted against Chief Justice John Roberts and Associate Justice Samuel Alito when they were nominated to serve on the Supreme Court of the United States. Sen. McCain supported both nominations and, based on the information we’re gathering concerning Gov. Palin, her judicial philosophy will be in line with our two most recent Supreme Court appointments.
Next week is the Republican Convention, and I expect the country will get to know Gov. Palin in a more personal way. We do know that she is the mother of five children, having her most recent son born in April of this year. It’s already been reported that Gov. Palin refused to let the results of her prenatal genetic testing of her son, Trig, change her decision to have the baby. Trig was diagnosed with Down Syndrome. She’s quoted as saying of her son: “I’m looking at him right now, and I see perfection. Yeah, he has an extra chromosome. I keep thinking, in our world, what is normal and what is perfect?” And when she and her husband were told the news, here was her response: “We’ve both been very vocal about being pro-life,” Palin said. “We understand that every innocent life has wonderful potential.” (cited here)
Barry, now here’s the real controversy: Gov. Palin signed a proclamation which declared October 21-27th as “Christian Heritage Week” in Alaska. Here is the exact proclamation that was issued:
WHEREAS, the celebration of Christian Heritage Week, October 21-27, 2007, reminds Alaskans of the role Christianity has played in our rich heritage. Many truly great men and women of America, giants in the structuring of American history, were Christians of caliber and integrity who did not hesitate to express their faith. Some of their legacies are evidenced as follows:
WHEREAS, the Preamble to the Constitution of the State of Alaska begins with, “We the people of Alaska, grateful to God and to those who founded our nation and pioneered this great land”
WHEREAS, Benjamin Franklin, at the Constitutional Convention stated, “It is impossible to build an empire without our Father’s aid. I believe the sacred writings which say that, Except the Lord build the house, they labor in vain that build it (Psalm 127:1).”
WHEREAS, George Washington enunciated, “animated alone by the pure spirit of Christianity, and conducting ourselves as the faithful subjects of our free government, we may enjoy every temporal and spiritual felicity.”
WHEREAS, Thomas Jefferson, author of the Declaration of Independence, wrote, “Can the liberties of a nation be secure when we have removed the conviction that these liberties are the gift of God?”
WHEREAS, James Madison, father of the United States Constitution advocated “the diffusion of the light of Christianity in our nation” in his Memorial and Remonstrance.
WHEREAS, Patrick Henry quoted Proverbs 14:34 for our nation, “Righteousness alone can exalt a nation, but sin is a disgrace to any people.”
WHEREAS, George Mason, in his Virginia Declaration of Rights, forerunner to our United States Bill of Rights, affirmed, “That it is the mutual duty of all to practice Christian forebearance, love and charity towards each other.”
NOW, THEREFORE, I, Sarah Palin, Governor of the State of Alaska, do hereby proclaim October 21-27, 2007, as Alaska’s 9th Annual Christian Heritage Week in Alaska, and encourage all citizens to celebrate this week.
This should certainly spark controversy from your end, Barry, so maybe we’re the first to break it. I think it’s constitutional to have a proclamation like this; I expect you to disagree. Let’s go at it!