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So you think you can be an American President?

By Tara Sena-Becker - posted Thursday, 18 September 2008

Episode 7: The Oestrogen Factor

Last week on “So you think you can be an American President?”, it was pantsuits versus pageants as McCain’s top girl Sarah Palin made her on-screen debut, strutting the gender dilemma back into the presidential spotlight.

With a strategic move by the Republican team, the race for Commander in Chief is once again awash with the glamour, high heels and oestrogen made famous by recently-evicted candidate Hillary Clinton.

This week: Does hell really hath no fury like a Hillary supporter scorned?


Stay tuned to find out.

Indeed it seems the entire world is currently glued to the prime-time special that is the American election. Such a reaction is hardly surprising. After all, with the USA maintaining its position as world hegemon, the 2008 voting count will, no doubt, have a significant impact on the global political arena. It also has the bonus of being the best new show in town. With celebrity appearances, harsh comebacks, agonising setbacks and controversial scandals, “So you think you can be an American President?” is a sure fire hit in the ratings war.

This week, there’s a new character on the scene. Former beauty queen, Alaskan Governor and mother of five, Republican Vice Presidential candidate Sarah Palin is already being touted as the new Hillary Clinton.

In making the selection of Palin for VP, Republic nominee John McCain has turned the predetermined Vice Presidential debate on its heel. No longer is the question, “how can Sarah Palin match up with Joe Biden?” Rather, it’s “could Sarah be the new Hillary?” Or, more importantly, can Sarah secure the votes of those 18 million women who supported Hillary in her attempt to shatter the glass ceiling?

For the Republican PR department, the answer is a resounding “yes”.

Never mind her credentials, history or political ideals - Sarah Palin has only X chromosomes and she’s not afraid to use them. Ensuring there was no doubt about her key campaign target, Palin's opening speech at an introductory rally in Ohio made reference to everything from her own 20th wedding anniversary to the 88th anniversary of women’s suffrage, her role as a “hockey mom”, “team mom”, kids basketball coach, member of the Parent Teacher’s Association, “devoted wife and mother of five”.


In other words, the Republican Party is leaving no questions asked about Sarah Palin’s genetics. For all of those who weren’t paying attention - SHE’S A WOMAN.

And so it follows, according to the Republicans, that Sarah Palin and Hillary Clinton - those two renowned political starlets blessed with the gift of a female anatomy - should be able to secure votes of the same social contingent.

After all, in the most recent New York Times/CBS poll, conducted August 15-20, 36 per cent of female Hillary Clinton supporters noted that they were now either backing McCain or still undecided. That’s 36 per cent of votes that Sarah Palin has been tasked to collect (never mind the additional contingent of drooling males enraptured by this former beauty queen’s curves).

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About the Author

Tara Sena-Becker is a freelance journalist and Public Relations executive at Verve Communications. She is studying a BA (Media & Communications) at The University of Sydney.

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