The McCain campaign has engaged in some creative logic over the last couple of months. But none has been more creative than it’s stubborn insistence on claiming that being Governor of Alaska constitutes meaningful foreign policy…because Alaska is close to Russia.
In the second segment of CBS Evening News anchor Katie Couric’s interview of Governor Sarah Palin, which is airing tonight, Palin continue to makes her most bizarre argument:
COURIC: You’ve cited Alaska’s proximity to Russia as part of your foreign policy experience. What did you mean by that?
PALIN: That Alaska has a very narrow maritime border between a foreign country, Russia, and on our other side, the land– boundary that we have with– Canada. It– it’s funny that a comment like that was– kind of made to– cari– I don’t know, you know? Reporters–
PALIN: Yeah, mocked, I guess that’s the word, yeah.
COURIC: Explain to me why that enhances your foreign policy credentials.
PALIN: Well, it certainly does because our– our next door neighbors are foreign countries. They’re in the state that I am the executive of. And there in Russia–
COURIC: Have you ever been involved with any negotiations, for example, with the Russians?
PALIN: We have trade missions back and forth. We– we do– it’s very important when you consider even national security issues with Russia as Putin rears his head and comes into the air space of the United States of America, where– where do they go? It’s Alaska. It’s just right over the border. It is– from Alaska that we send those out to make sure that an eye is being kept on this very powerful nation, Russia, because they are right there. They are right next to– to our state.
OK, the first time I heard the McCain campaign argue this expertise by osmosis point, I thought it was a one-day tee-hee slip-up that would never be repeated again once the McCain campaign developed better proof points for the inevitable “where is the foreign policy experience” question.
But I assume the McCain campaign staff extensively grilled Palin to prepare for this interview. Yet it is still selling this loopy argument. Moreover, Governor Palin seems sincerely dumbfounded that anyone would not understand her reasoning.
For the record: No, you should not trust me to overhaul your transmission because I live very near an auto repair shop. No proximity to Canada and Mexico doesn’t make 15 other Governors foreign policy experts either. And no, we should not trust someone to keep us out of war with Russia based on the fact that they live relatively near Russia.
I gotta say, I feel ridiculous even making such a self-evident rebuttal. So how come the McCain campaign doesn’t feel ridiculous making the assertion?