1. The earmark issue is very different when you're a governor and you're trying to get money for your state of which 65% is federally-owned land (Michigan is ~20% or less by my estimation from maps
). It is not unreasonable to expect federal dollars to be spent on federal lands. And obviously, McCain is light years, LIGHT YEARS, ahead of Obama and Biden on the earmark issue. Obama got earmarks for the hospital where his wife worked - 'nuff said. and 2. she has reduced the amount of earmark expenditures by something on the order of a half from the prior administration since she came to office. Cold turkey would be nice to see, but ultimately not realistic, especially when the reality is that the federal government controls a majority of the land and she has semi-hostile Congresspeople that do the actual earmarking (Rep. Young - who her Lt. Governor tried to unseat in a primary, and Sen. Stevens, whose good friend Frank Murkowski lost his job to her (and who is Murkowski's daughter? Yep, Sen. Lisa Murkowski)). And further to the point, she is not in a position to "give money back" to Congress. That is not how money is appropriated by the federal government. Congress, not governors, makes the decisions about who to give federal money and they voted to remove the requirement it be spent on the Bridge to Nowhere. Tom Coburn (R-OK) at one point put the Bridge money up to a vote in the Senate to actually redirect it to post-Katrina New Orleans rebuilding. Obama and Biden voted no. End of story.
2. And yes, she killed the Bridge to Nowhere. It's as true as the day she was selected. Yes, she was initially in favor of it during the gubernatorial campaign, and then killed it and withdrew all state money when the bridge was obviously way outside the realm of reasonable. Sucks for the 50 people that live there, I guess.
3. Obama got his name out on some widely accepted and uncontroversial legislation. It's easy to be a bipartisan leader when everyone agrees with you. Huzzah for him. Where was his leadership in potentially unpopular times or on unpopular issues within his own caucus? Hiding, just like he stood silently as Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac lined his pockets. Certainly, he's the best person to fix their now federalized issues, right?
4. The Iraq quote is a deliberate misquote, first spread by the AP and then repeated in error by Charlie Gibson (although they later changed later broadcasts and the archived interview recording to remove the misquote). She said
(emphasis added): "Pray for our military, he's [Track] going to be deployed to Iraq in September. Pray for our military men and women who are striving to do what is right also for this country. [Pray] That
our leaders, our national leaders, are sending them out on a task that is from God - that's what we have to make sure that we're praying for - that there is a plan, and that that plan is God's plan."
The quote in the video is simply misleading cut mid-sentence and a transparent attempt to paint her as a religious extremist. Giggle at her as some dumb red state religious bumpkin if you wish, but what she was saying is even less ambiguous when you listen to her intonation. She was not
saying that the war in Iraq was a mission from God, and for anyone to quote her in this way is simply dishonest.
5. She recorded a rather generic feel-good message
to the AKIP as governor, one that could be delivered to nearly any party convention short of the Neo Nazis. Like it or lump it, they're a not-insignificant part of the party landscape in Alaska. Their 20-point platform though simply does not include a demand or even support for a vote on Alaskan secession
. Somehow that video managed to miss the 20 points that are in their platform for one that isn't, though. Odd, that.