Palin Delays Financial Disclosure Until After Debate.

25 09 2008

After the unbearably painful performance by Palin during her recent interview with Katie Couric, it’s obvious to most that she is not ready for the Vice Presidential debate next week. Whether the interview is the reason, or only part of the reason that McCain has fled his own debate with Barack Obama scheduled for Friday isn’t entirely clear. The McCain camp has requested that the Presidential debate be moved to the date of the Vice Presidential debate, conveniently delaying the Vice Presidential debate to an unknown date in the future. Presumably this will give Palin some much-needed extra time to bone up on all the things she would have learned if she had ever studied or participated in international diplomacy, and matters outside the state of Alaska.

It’s also not clear yet, whether this “delay tactic” is going to work. Barack Obama has said that if McCain doesn’t show up to the debate, he’ll be there to hold a Town Hall meeting instead, leaving the Vice Presidential debate to go on as scheduled. Interesting…

“Delay” is apparently the theme of the day for our Republican VP nominee. Today we hear that Palin has requested, and received a four day extension for the disclosure of her personal finances. The new release date for these forms? October 3rd, the day AFTER her scheduled debate with Joe Biden.

Trevor Potter, general counsel for the McCain-Palin campaign, told the FEC that the campaign initially thought it had until Oct. 4 to file the report but then learned the FEC set an earlier due date.

Oops. They forgot to check the date. Those silly McCain people… I bet they felt really stupid.

But now that they’ve got their dates straight, they’ve got to tread very carefully with this one. Ask indicted Alaska Senator Ted Stevens, who is facing seven felony counts for filing false financial disclosure forms. Ask Anchorage Mayor Mark Begich who just got in a little hot water himself because his federal and state forms didn’t match.

[The forms will] show whether she and her husband, Todd, hold any mortgages for real estate investments, and roughly how much any property held for investment purposes is worth. The financial reports that Sarah Palin filed as Alaska governor list property the couple held at that point, but not how much it was worth; how much, if any, profit they made on real estate sales; or how much, if any, mortgage debt they held.

Such information is a standard part of the personal financial disclosure reports that members of Congress, administration officials and federal candidates must file each year. The reports allow the public to see whether politicians may be receiving favorable financial treatment from people with issues before government or have any potential conflicts of interest. They also offer a glimpse of their ability to manage their personal finances.

Another extension may be filed, but the last possible date for the extension is October 6. Will there be any interesting little surprises there? Forensic accountants, sharpen your pencils, clean your glasses and circle the day on your calendar. You’re on!

McCain Blinks. Palin Not Ready for Prime Time.

20 09 2008

So, how badly will Sarah Palin lose the Vice Presidential debate?  Because, lose she will…but to what degree?  Not one to relish in the misfortune of others, I’ve been having a mental battle with myself when thinking about the upcoming VP debate.

Good Me:  There’s no doubt she’s going to lose.  And she’ll probably embarrass herself.  People will see her for who she is, and they will note her lack of experience and wisdom, and Biden will demonstrate his superiority in every facet of the debate.  The rightful winner shall win, and that’s the end of it. I feel no joy that it had to come to this, but that’s the way it is. We will all learn and move on.

Evil Me:  Please, let them ask really tough questions about foreign policy.  I want Mbeki, and Mugabe, and Odinga…  May Gwen Ifill be a salivating bulldog.  Joe Biden is going to run mental circles around her and then drop her like a bag of dirt, and I am going to love it. (rubbing hands together like a fly) That scrappy terrier from Scranton will kick the pitbull’s behind all the way back to Juneau. She will be so humiliated and so exposed, she’ll slink out of public life forever after being Alaska’s most infamous one-term wonder. She wants “Stump the Candidate”, then give her “Stump the Candidate!”

Good Me:  Ahem…Are you listening to yourself?

Evil Me:  ….and maybe they’ll ask about the capitol of Uzbekistan…..what?   Oh. (sheepish grin)

As this battle rages on between me and myself, the following news comes out today:

At the insistence of the McCain campaign, the Oct. 2 debate between the Republican nominee for vice president, Gov. Sarah Palin, and her Democratic rival, Senator Joseph R. Biden Jr., will have shorter question-and-answer segments than those for the presidential nominees, the advisers said. There will also be much less opportunity for free-wheeling, direct exchanges between the running mates. McCain advisers said they had been concerned that a loose format could leave Ms. Palin, a relatively inexperienced debater, at a disadvantage and largely on the defensive.

McCain advisers said they were only somewhat concerned about Ms. Palin’s debating skills compared with those of Mr. Biden, who has served six terms in the Senate, or about his chances of tripping her up. Instead, they say, they wanted Ms. Palin to have opportunities to present Mr. McCain’s positions, rather than spending time talking about her own experience or playing defense.

I had to read that a couple times.  Go ahead and read that again if you need to.  (pause)

So, when the McCain team decided upon the terms of the debate, a debate in which any future candidate worth his/her salt should be able to participate, it obviously never occurred to them that their actual pick would be completely and utterly unprepared and unqualified.  At this point, they are basically saying, “We know she’s going to lose, but we want her to lose less catastrophically.  And we don’t really care that the American people will never get to see the woman who we want to be a heartbeat away from the highest office in the land engage in actual conversation, or be called out for her lack of knowledge. Allowing the debate to continue as is, would be far worse for us than being called out for giving head starts to ignorant people, and grading the debate on a curve.”

They’d rather she have more time to spit out the talking points, then have to defend her own qualifications.  They just came right out and said it!  Our little hothouse flower will be protected.  Quick, add another circle of barbed wire, and dig a deeper level in that subterranean, undisclosed location…Sarah’s coming.  But is she Ready to Lead?