caption="Gov. Sarah Palin in Florida on Tuesday"]
Editor's note: Watch Randi Kaye's report tonight on Election Center and AC360° at 8 and 10p ET.
Put ten women in a room and there is no shortage of conversation!
That was the case during a recent visit I made to the home of Tami Nantz.
Tami is a 37-year-old stay-at-home-mom who lives in Florida, a battleground state.
She invited some of her friends over to chat about Sarah Palin for a story I’m working on.
You see, since Palin was named as the V.P. Republican nominee her fan base has really dropped off.
In fact, CNN polls, and many others, show that John McCain has actually lost any gains he made among women voters after Palin was first named to the ticket. Time Magazine’s recent poll shows Barack Obama with a 17 point lead among women.
Women I meet either love her or hate her.
The women we met in Florida are big fans. They call her nomination “brilliant.”
Why is that?
Tami and her friends really relate to Sarah Palin. Like her, they are pro-life and oppose embryonic stem cell research.
They think the fact that Palin chose to go ahead with the birth of her son she knew had Down Syndrome is a “blessing.” One woman told me it shows “with the grace of God” a family can overcome anything.
They believe her support of her teenage daughter’s pregnancy should be commended.
These women are the voters John McCain likely had in mind when he picked Sarah Palin. He was having trouble winning over the conservative base. Not anymore.
These ladies told me they agree with Palin 100% on the issues. They feel like if she had been a part of our gathering that afternoon, they would’ve chatted away like she was “one of the girls.”
But for them it’s really about her conservative beliefs, and less so about the fact that she is a woman.
Never before have conservative women had a strong female conservative voice on the national stage.
In Sarah Palin, they found their champion. She has re-energized them. They say they “get her” and can relate to her feistiness, her winks, and her sarcasm.
The women told me they prayed for her, many of them numerous times, before she debated Joe Biden recently.
They are all members of a Bible Study and deeply religious. They think she’s qualified for the job and is just what Washington needs.
They believe she is a Maverick.
Tami thinks criticism of Palin has been so unfair she started a blog to defend her, called Moms4SarahPalin.
She told me about half the comments on the blog have been negative, even targeted Tami personally, but she’s not giving up.
What do you think? Can you relate to Sarah Palin the way these women do?
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