Right now I'm preparing to interview Gov. Sarah Palin, and I'm really excited about this chance to sit down with a woman who has stirred things up in the third act of a very eventful election year.
Palin elicits some strong responses from women all across the political spectrum. Her reliability factor, or that "she feels my pain" quotient, was through the roof after the Republican convention. It hovered at 60 percent in a CBS News poll, higher than any of the three men in the race. But women don't necessarily share her views on social issues.
While 67 percent of women agree with her that creationism should be taught alongside evolution in schools, just 17 percent share her view on abortion, that it should only be legal in cases where the mother's life is at risk. The majority of women think there should be exceptions that allow abortions in cases of rape or incest.
4414330Palin has been topic A for all of my friends, and I'm sure she is for you, as well. Would a Palin vice presidency be good for women? Is she experienced enough to be a heartbeat away from the presidency? Are her views too right of center? Will women who supported Sen. Hillary Clinton now back a McCain-Palin ticket? To many Democrats, that seems unlikely given how little the two women have in common politically. But some women were impressed by Hillary's grit and determination and Sarah Palin's tough talk on the stump may be striking a chord with them as well.
That said, a new poll from "Lifetime" found that neither Obama nor McCain have solidified a majority of women voters, and about 7 percent remain undecided. These women will be key to a November victory.
So all of this is a long way of telling you some of the things in my head right now as I am getting ready for the interview. Friends come up to me wondering if I'll ask about the rumors online, all the gossipy stuff that seems to sell magazines and mean so little in terms of Palin's preparedness for the job.
This election is too important, and we have only a few precious weeks left to get to know who these candidates really are. With 7 percent of women undecided, I want to serve the sisterhood (and the brotherhood, too, btw) by helping all of us make informed choices.
When I interview Gov. Palin, you won't hear "gotcha" questions about personal issues. You will hear a broad range of policy questions on topics both foreign and domestic. I hope you'll walk away with a better sense of who this woman is politically, what she believes, and where she sees our country heading if Sen. McCain wins the election.
So many people are focused on this election. I'm a little concerned that I'm dreaming about it. I think I need to get a hobby. But this is a very critical time for all of us and for the entire country. I'd love to hear your thoughts … I won't be able to get to everything, but believe me, I'll try!