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Ralph Reed: Palin Pick Electrified GOP Base

Tuesday, 09 Sep 2008 07:03 PM

By Rick Pedraza

Republican strategist and former head of the Christian Coalition Ralph Reed tells Newsmax.TV that John McCain hit it out of the park by selecting Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin as his vice presidential running mate.

Reed says putting Palin on the GOP ticket has electrified the social conservative base of the Republican Party and that it has completely turned things around among women voters.

Reed points to a recent ABC News/Washington Post poll that shows a 20-point swing among white women voters in support of McCain, whereas they were supporting Democratic presidential nominee Barack Obama by 12 points prior to the Republican National Convention. The poll now shows white women supporting McCain and Palin by 8 points.

How much has Sarah Palin helped the John McCain ticket?

“I think it’s helped tremendously,” Reed says. “I have not seen the selection of a running mate electrify and energize — and really transform — an entire campaign the way Senator McCain’s selection of Governor Palin has.”

Reed believes Obama blew his pick by not selecting New York Sen. Hillary Clinton, Obama’s rival for the Democratic Party nomination, and says McCain “hit it out of the park” by “completely changing the texture and contour" of the race.

Reed assesses the support McCain now enjoys among evangelicals is also growing. He says McCain has completely turned the election around from the formerly lukewarm support he had among religious conservatives prior to the selection of Palin.

“[McCain] has a 26-year pro-life voting record,” Reed explains. “With the exception of just a handful of votes over that quarter century, he’s been a solid pro-life vote. When you combine that with [McCain’s] stellar performance at the Saddleback Civil Forum – and then you add into it the Palin pick – this has completely energized social and religious conservatives,” he says.

Reed also credits McCain’s willingness to appoint justices to the federal bench in the model of Justices Alito and Roberts as another reason he is gaining support among the conservative electorate.

Ralph Reed: Palin Pick Has Electrified the GOP Base

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