Palin: Celebrity? Check. Inexperienced? Check.

Sarah Palin, serving her second year as governor of Alaska might not have a deep government resume, but she brings to the McCain ticket valuable experience as the No. 2 pick in a contest. In 1984 Palin came in second in the Miss Alaska pageant, assuming the same duties she’d have as vice president: biding her time in the event the winner becomes unable to fulfill the duties of the office.

The former Sarah Heath, crowned Miss Wasilla the same year Democrats first nominated a woman as vice president, won the coveted Miss Congeniality prize but lost the crown to Maryline Blackburn, an African American contestant. Palin went on to earn a journalism degree and gained fame as a sportscaster in Wasilla before running for city council in the early 1990s.

It’s as though McCain considered his campaign’s attacks on Barack Obama — a young celebrity without the experience to lead — and went looking for his own version.

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Ernest Luning

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