Sarah Palin was the better choice, says McCain


She’s baaack. (Bill Pugliano/GETTY IMAGES)

“Oh come on, because we thought Sarah Palin was the better candidate,” John McCain told reporters Tuesday. “Why did we not take Pawlenty, why did we not take any of the other 10 other people. Why didn’t I? Because we had a better candidate, the same way with all the others.”

Ah.

I’d say it’s about time for some of that quote-doctoring and remark-approving that has been much in the news lately.

Andy Borowitz has been having a field day with this on Twitter. “McCain: "Romney had all his money hidden in Switzerland. Sarah Palin was better, because she had never heard of Switzerland.”

The best way to get out of a hole is not necessarily to dig a larger, more disturbing hole.

Why not Romney? Not because there was anything menacing in his tax returns. Because Sarah Palin was better. That’s right. Sarah Palin was better. Sarah “Refudiate” Palin, who would not let the public rest until a Lifetime original series was dedicated to her, whose meandering remarks left you feeling as though you had been struck from behind by a blunt object, whose mere mention made millions of campaign-watchers cry out in terror and then go suddenly silent — was a better choice.

According to what criteria? Relative bizarreness of children’s names. Hair care? Even then, the race is tight.

Unless the sole criterion by which the McCain campaign selected its helpmeet was resemblance to Tina Fey, I am not sure what the explanation was. Sarah has — er, more X chromosomes? She lives in a more remote area of the world? She has never strapped an animal to the roof of her car that was not already deceased?. I suppose she shook up the race more, in the sense that a tossed grenade shakes up a cocktail party.

McCain campaign manager Steve Schmidt implied that it wasn’t that Mitt had any dark secrets but rather that he and McCain, combined, simply had too many houses. Ah. (This turns out to be one of those situations where the more you talk, the less it helps.)

Then again, Mitt Romney’s campaign seems able to alter the stream of time. Perhaps John McCain can retroactively retire that quote.

Alexandra Petri writes the ComPost blog, offering a lighter take on the news and opinions of the day. She is the author of "A Field Guide to Awkward Silences".

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