WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Republican presidential candidate John McCain has gained huge support and now leads Democrat Barack Obama among white women voters since naming Sarah Palin as his running mate, according to a survey published on Tuesday.First, we have to take into consideration that Sarah Palin, the supposed factor here, is a blank slate. She makes Barack Obama look like a seasoned, vetted professional politician.
The Washington Post/ABC News poll found that much of McCain's surge in the polls since the Republican National Convention is attributable to the shift in support among white women.
Once women peer a little more closely into her positions, and especially, hear her speak about issues like abortion, like health care, like raising kids, this number will whittle down quickly.
Right now, she's a woman and that's got women all across the nation paying attention. It's also partly why Palin has been secluded and incommunicado.
Palin will likely keep a percentage of women voters, to be sure. She's not the soccer mom McCain was hoping for, but there's an element of citizenry that thinks she'd make a good vice president because of her stance on the issues, who had never heard of her. They will stick.
And of course, there's no accounting for the lunatic fringe of PUMAs who will support anybody but Barack.
Too, Palin hasn't helped McCain where it counts: electoral votes. She may even have hampered him.
The Palin bounce (or as Skippy likes to call it, the Dead Caribou Bounce), as I indicated yesterday, was less than stellar and actually falls well within the average bounce a candidate can expect to receive after a convention, McCain receiving an 8 point boost. Even Fox had to be depressed!
I anticipate that, once September 11 is past and electioneering begins in earnest, Obama will slowly begin to build momentum, and pick back up some of these women. For now, he's kept Hillary Clinton on the sidelines, again, I suspect because of the 9/11 commemoration. He's giving a "window of purity" as Don Imus used to call the minutes leading up to having a religious leader appear on his program.
And then watch her preach!