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The Bonfire of the Hypocrisies

The nomination that launched a thousand attacks.

Sep 22, 2008, Vol. 14, No. 02 • By TOD LINDBERG
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Then there's all the pro-life business: It just took one columnist in Salon to expose the hypocrisy there: Palin had her baby tested for Down syndrome, and then--had the baby! If she were really pro-life, there wouldn't have been any reason to have the test. As Rahul K. Parikh, M.D., explained:

We could ask, given that Palin had no doubts about seeing her pregnancy through, why she bothered to take a genetic test. Why not, as you might expect a woman in her position and with her outspoken beliefs to do, decline any testing or counseling? Of course, it seems very reasonable to want to know about the health of your baby and to have time to prepare (emotionally and otherwise) for a baby that may have a genetic disorder. But that doesn't negate the fact that by having a blood test, Palin was given a choice about what to do. .  .  . Her supporters say that Trig signals that she practices what she preaches. Her decision to make her own choice but not grant it to others is a sign of her hypocrisy.

So let's see if the pro-lifers can get this straight for a change: If you are going to have the baby anyway, you are not entitled to information about its health (even though the desire for such information is "very reasonable"), because some people who are not pro-life use such information as a basis for deciding whether to terminate their pregnancies. Got it?

But the most stunning hypocrisy of all, from the point of view of most Democrats and, coincidentally, the media again, was that McCain had promised a vice presidential nominee qualified for the job and then undertook such a haphazard, last-minute, incompetent vetting process that he found out all the things that Democrats and the media are so exercised about. And he went ahead with Sarah Palin anyway!

And just look at the bitter fruit McCain has reaped for all his "hypocrisies": Palin has helped propel him ahead of Obama in national polls for the first time. Fifty-two percent of respondents in a Pew survey think she is ready to be president now. If people could vote only for vice president, they favor her over Biden 53-44 in a CNN poll. And the unknown governor of two weeks before is now the most popular Republican politician in the country.

Tod Lindberg, a WEEKLY STANDARD contributing editor and Hoover Institution fellow, is editor of Policy Review.