Palin Gets Crash Course in Foreign Policy 101

The McCain team has hastily assembled a team of former Bush White House aides to tutor the vice-presidential candidate, Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin, on foreign-policy issues, to write her speeches and to begin preparing her for her all-important Oct. 2 debate against Sen. Joe Biden.

Steve Biegun, who once served as the No. 3 National Security Council official under Condoleezza Rice at the White House, has been hired as chief foreign-policy adviser to the Alaska governor.  After taking leave from his job as vice president for international affairs at Ford Motor Co. last Friday, Biegun flew to St. Paul and, together with McCain’s foreign-policy guru Randy Schuenemann, began briefings for Palin on national-security issues—an area where her resume is conspicuously thin.  (That is just their nice way of stating that she has absolutely no experience in foreign policy or national-security issues.)

Biegun is hardly the only Bushie to be tapped for Palin duty. Among others:

Matt Scully, a former Bush White House speechwriter, is working on Palin’s acceptance speech to the convention Wednesday night.

Mark Wallace, a former lawyer for the Bush 2000 campaign who served in a variety of administration jobs including chief counsel, has been put in charge of “prep” for the debate against Biden.

Wallace’s wife, Nicolle Wallace, the former White House communications director, has taken over the same job for Palin.

Tucker Eskew, another senior Bush White House communications aide, is serving as senior counselor to Palin’s operation.

Douglas Holtz-Eakin, the former chief economist at the Council of Economic Advisers who has been serving as top economics guru for the McCain campaign, has moved over to serve as Palin’s chief domestic-policy adviser.

The proliferation of former Bush White House aides in the Palin team may strike some as ironic-and could even provide some fodder for the Democrats-given the McCain camp’s efforts to distance itself from the unpopular president. (It has been widely noted, for example, that while the president is addressing the convention tonight by satellite, neither the president nor Vice President Cheney will be coming anywhere near St. Paul. And when Palin’s selection was announced last week, McCain aides touted it as an example of the senator returning to his “reformer roots” and rebelling against the GOP establishment.)

No amount of briefings is going to help Palin in a debate against Biden. He has been an 11 year member and current chairman of the U.S. Senate Committee on Foreign Relations. Palin doesn’t stand a chance in being able to speak, from a position of experience or authority, on any major foreign policy issue. It will be entertaining to see Biden make her look completely inadequate for the position of Vice-President.


10 thoughts on “Palin Gets Crash Course in Foreign Policy 101

  1. Palin is not a rebel against the Republican establishment. She accepted illegal “campaign contributions” from the National Republican Governors Association in the form of mailings. The money for these mailings can be traced back to Abramoff and Tom Delay. When confronted by her opponent she responded with a “What can I do?” She could have contacted the Republican Governors Association and ask them to cease with this mailings.
    Interesting blog:
    which probably should be added to TheZoo Blog Pen. The writer is from Alaska.

  2. The incredible part of Palin’s nomination is the fact, yes the fact, that millions of people will swallow the spin that she is ready to step into the shoes of the President on day one: That her status as Commander in Chief of the Alaska National Guard gives her the experience necessary to command our entire military as they are engaged in two wars; That living close to Russia makes her an expert on foreign relations; That being a member of the Parent Teachers Assocition has equiped her to hold the highest office in the land; That Palin is the best, the highest qualified person the Republicans can put forward for the office of the Vice President of the United States.

    I wonder if Monica Goodling was in charge of Palin’s vetteding.

    If McCain/Palin win this November, We, The People will deserve everything we get.

  3. If they win Iolair then we have to start thinking that we don’t live in the “free” country we though we did and waiting to elect people looking out for the people and the country isn’t going to work. I’d say that will push us to the brink of a religious war.

  4. Here’s the Youtube video that someone needs to make….
    It’s 3:00 am and the phone rings, which foreign policy adviser or domestic adviser is available to provide answers to Sarah Palin when she answers the phone. Sarah Palin, not ready on day one.

  5. “The McCain team has hastily assembled a team of former Bush White House aides to tutor the vice-presidential candidate”

    Excuse me, isn’t this the same group of geniuses that got us into Iraq, lost track of bin Laden, and wrecked our relationship with most of our allies?

    Isn’t this rather like the blind leading the blind?

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