Huffpost Politics
THE BLOG

Featuring fresh takes and real-time analysis from HuffPost's signature lineup of contributors

Justin Frank Headshot

The Trojan Horses of Sarah Palin and Clarence Thomas

Posted: Updated:

Since Governor Sarah Palin arrived on the national stage, people have been comparing her to others. Some say Dan Quayle (who actually DID become Vice-President). Some say Tina Fey. Some say watching her is like watching a "chick flick". Some say she proves McCain has faulty judgment. Some say - including myself the other day - that she represents a "Hail Mary" pass. Some say she has plenty of foreign exposure because her state is closest to Russia. Some say she is McCain's third wife. Some say she is McCain's daughter. Some say she is more inexperienced than Obama.

Now that so many comparisons of her to others have been aired, I would like to compare the actual choice of her with another choice made eighteen ears ago - a choice that at one level intended to make it hard for Democrats to oppose because they might appear racist; a choice that stuck it in the Democrats' face because the person chosen was what they said they wanted - an African-American on the Supreme Court to follow in the giant footsteps of Thurgood Marshall.

George H.W. Bush nominated Clarence Thomas - the person with whom I now compare Sarah Palin. Both are inexperienced and incompetent. And both stand for what Democrats desire - an African-American and a woman. They were both chosen, as best I can tell from my psychoanalytic perch, with cruel cynicism, It is as if Bush Senior and McCain Senior are speaking in one voice: you want something new and different? Here you are.

Again, it's important to remember that Quayle became VP and that Thomas still sits on the Bench. Jon Stewart got it in 2000 when he said that the "black vote elected Bush", and then showed a picture of Justice Thomas. When will we "get it"? Mockery doesn't work. Seeing McCain as desperate or Palin as a non-entity also doesn't work, even if both are true. Simply put, Obama and Biden better not be dismissive or complacent; they need to keep their eyes on the prize.