Big speech Wednesday night. Big, biiiiiig speeech.
• Forty-six percent rate McCain’s choice of Palin as excellent or “pretty good,” while 37% say it is “only fair” or poor. Over the past two decades, only Quayle received lower ratings after being picked for a ticket.
• Women overall have a slightly less favorable view of Palin than men, but they also are a bit more likely more likely to say her choice would prompt them to vote for McCain. Among women, 20% say her pick makes them more likely to vote for McCain, 11% less likely. That compares to 16%-12% among men.
Among Democratic women — including those who may be disappointed that New York Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton did not win the Democratic nomination — 9% say Palin makes them more likely to support McCain, 15% less likely.
I’m not worried about the less likelies. They’re probably “Hillary feminists” who weren’t voting McCain anyway and consider the pick an insult either because it offends their strong, principled opposition to identity politics or because they’re not voting for a pro-life ticket, period. Nine percent being more likely feels like a decent place to start.
Now the good-ish news:
Whatever their views on their qualifications, voters say neither Palin nor Biden will have much impact on their vote. Two of three registered voters, 67%, say putting Palin on the ticket won’t affect their vote; 72% say that of Biden.
Of those who say the running mates will make a difference, 18% say Palin makes them more likely to vote for McCain, 11% less likely. That net-positive impact of 7 points is similar to Biden’s: 14% said his pick made them more likely to vote for Obama, 7% less likely.
High risk, high reward. Whereas Biden’s not going to move much in either direction, she’s bound to win some people over simply by dint of her personal appeal. If she comes out like gangbusters on Wednesday and at the debate and reassures them that she’s qualified, I wonder if we won’t see major movement among that 67%.
And if she comes out and goes full Quayle on us, McCain’s finished.
Exit question: What proof should the alcohol I buy between now and November be? The standard 80 or is it time for this jittery pessimist to kick it up a notch?