Whoa! Reihan on Sarah Palin!

To my lasting embarrassment, I keep tabs on Grand New Party-related news, and I came across this blog post on Salad Ahoy!:

One advantage of listening to podcasts months after they air (this one is from July 16) is that I have a different perspective than I would have at the time. Check out the answer to Terry Gross’ question that that starts just after the 6:00 mark.

Intrigued, I decided to give it a listen — I figured we’d have said something really embarrassing. Terry Gross — who is mesmerizing — asked a question about John McCain’s remark concerning “getting on the Internet by myself.” At that point, I laughed somewhat creepily and said,

REIHAN: I think John McCain is an incredibly charming person. I also think that he absolutely doesn’t represent the future of the Republican party. I think that this is a highly unusual election in a lot of ways, but when you look at that demographic composition of the Republican party, and where the party needs to go in order to build a majority, I think the party really needs to look to figures like Sarah Palin, a mother of five, someone who was also the mayor of a fast-growing suburban small town, she’s now —

ROSS: She’s now the governor of Alaska

REIHAN: — now the governor of Alaska. I think it’s figures like that who don’t come from that tight, narrow demographic box of aging, cranky white men that has been a rich source of Republican politicians for, you know, a really long time now.

We’ve both been talking her up for a while now. Man, this is all really weird. It’s interesting — I think there’s a default assumption that Pawlenty would be our candidate, but he wasn’t (he wasn’t mine, certainly), though I do suspect his nomination might have piqued interest in GNP.

This is my last day here. Still have a lot of work to do. I’m eager to take a breather from politics, though it occurs to me that I’m going to the birthday part of one of my best friends on Saturday, in New Haven, and there is a real danger of, “I mean, can you believe it?” chatter re: Palin, and then I’ll go ape. Oh please, let it stop. My usual approach in such circumstances — entirely sincere — is to simply say, “Look, Obama should just ignore her. Attacking her won’t help.” But this will draw me further into a conversation I’d rather not have. My problem is that I’m uncomfortable with leaving assertions unchallenged, to the point where I’m playing devil’s advocate half of the time.