Archives About Staff BagNews is dedicated to visual politics, media literacy and the analysis of news images.
September 2, 2008

Day 2


This is the Day 2 shot released by the McCain campaign of the newly announced Veep.  Otherwise, Palin kept a low profile, canceling a convention speech before the Republican National Coalition for Life.

Your read?

(h/t: Victoria)

(image via Reuters. Minneapolis. September 2, 2008)

  • Karen

    Cindy needs to take her tennies off before spraying the tan on. And I wonder if they could sit any further apart or look any less comfortable.

  • g

    so Sarah’s just one of the gals, huh? One of the wives? Would they have taken this shot if he’d picked Pawlenty or Mitt?
    god, does Laura look awkward – what is she making eye contact with?
    and they are all so remote from one another. this is clearly not a “conversation” in progress.

  • Julia Grey

    Cindy’s been hitting the tanning beds pretty hard. Laura’s fake-perky Xanax smile is literally frightening, Sarah’s new(er) hairstyle is da pitz.
    But seriously, Laura and Cindy are excellent Ladies Who Lunch. Backs straight, suburban hair, practiced social faces. Although Sarah has on the proper costume (except perhaps for the color), the hair and the slouch give her away as a hick.
    I think it’s true that a certain segment of the “Heartland” female population will see Cindy in particular as “Hoity Toity” and Sarah as “One of Us” who has been thrillingly elevated to the Big Time. Laura’s clothes are not quite right for Hoity Toity and the scary facial expression is SO fake that she isn’t “One of Us” either. Of course, even if I hadn’t seen them, I could have predicted Laura’s clothes “aren’t quite right.”

  • charlie

    ugh, this reminds me of holidays with my ultra-republican family on my dad’s side. everyone just sits and stares at each other and talks about the most pointless crap. and the punch is so weak i have to sneak into the basement and chug a beer every half hour or so.
    i would bet they are talking about the recent sale at JCPenney. or how much they hate black people.

  • g

    But why is the campaign pairing grouping the Vice Presidential candidate with the “Wives”?
    talk about your sexism….

  • Rai

    Laura’s problem is that ghoulish lipstick – makes her look like a dead clown.

  • 5699

    a couple of haggard old debs schooling the frosh in deportment

  • flyingshark

    Ms. McCain’s so shiny. What’s up with that. Dress, legs…
    Sarah needs to buy her clothes some place else then the mall in Anchorage.

  • donna

    Yup, putting her in the wive’s club is not a Good Move. I think most women will see that as a slight.
    And WHO DRESSES THESE PEOPLE? Image consultant, STAT!

  • steve talbert

    it is almost sad in a way (if you ignore that they are trying to take away everyone’s liberties)… sarah is the wannabee, pickles never got over murdering her high school boyfriend and cindy parties too hard because she isn’t worth anything without her dad.

  • matt

    who died? looks like a shiva call.

  • Gary Ruppert

    The fact is, you liberals should know that every bit of slime you hurl at true Americans like McCain and Palin sticks to you and your boy the Muslim Apostrate. You are only turning off the Heartland with your retorwreck. Keep up the good work and support freedom.

  • Anonymous

    It’s further solidifying Palin’s image as Republican arm candy.
    “Our Republican women are REAL American women! Good-looking PTA moms that take care of their kids, are pro-life, and look good.”
    Grouping the women together looks like a First Ladies club.
    Anyone else think that Palin looks/sounds like Amy from Everybody Loves Raymond.

  • Jan Kees

    Can you tell John McCain’s 2 picks in this picture? Hint: look for legs and big pretty smiles. NYT reports he was “impressed” by Palin during his (about one) meeting with her, impressed by her “intelligence.” For John McCain that means she’s young and really good-looking. You think McCain couldn’t find a more intelligent women in his line of business? His cracks about Wife 2.0 as a beauty queen at that bikers fest tells us where this D.O.M.’s heart is. Why don’t people just come out and say it?
    If McCain were Edwards he’d just dump his wife now, she’s going to die anyway, and marry the newer, fresher one, then run for president in a few years. That’s what McCain did with his first, auto-accident marred wife. He likes beauty, youth. “My marriage ended because John McCain didn’t want to be 40, he wanted to be 25,” she laments quietly. “When Carol was discharged from hospital after six months of life-saving surgery, the prognosis was bleak. In order to save her legs, surgeons had been forced to cut away huge sections of shattered bone, taking with it her tall, willowy figure. She was confined to a wheelchair and was forced to use a catheter…” “In 1979 while still married to Carol he met Cindy at a cocktail party in Hawaii. Over the next six months he pursued her, flying around the country to see her. Then he began to push to end his marriage.” Affair first, divorce follows, it’s that easy, Edwards! Said a friend of Maverick-Turned-Family-Values Champ: “Carol didn’t fight him. She felt her infirmity made her an impediment to him. She justified his actions because of all he had gone through. She used to say, ‘He just wants to make up for lost time.’”
    And he’s still doing it. Watch: if some (male) reporter asks McCain jokingly, knowingly, wink-wink, nod-nod, “Did you choose Sarah Palin because you’d rather see her first thing every morning than Mitt Romney or Joe Lieberman?” you can bet he’ll laugh good-naturedly, knowingly, wink-wink, nod-nod, “You’ve got a point there, heh, heh!”

  • Matt Hussein Platte

    Apostrate. I think I’ll take a nap.

  • truth

    Cindy is so very shiny! And she and Laura are so perfectly dressed in monotones, perfectly coifed, on the fairly modern sofa; poor Sarah the supposed candidate, in a dowdy mismatched suit, hair flopping on both sides of her face, on a chair upholstered in 1968, slumped in her seat, in the room with the other two but clearly separate. Her chair is lower than the couch, too. Sarah as less than.

  • jasperjava

    who died? looks like a shiva call.
    The McCain campaign.

  • Jason

    It looks they are going to bring the Governor into the Stepford Wives club.
    “Soon you’ll be like us…just wait.”

  •[email protected]/ DennisQ

    Sarah doesn’t really want to be there, but she’s going along with it like a good sport. She knows the reason she’s sitting with the wives is an expression of solidarity with ordinary women. Hillary’s disdainful refusal to bake cookies probably cost her the approval of so-called “traditional” women. Well, Sarah’s not making the same mistake. The outfit she bought in the shopping mall in Anchorage is probably a plus for her.
    Don’t underestimate this woman. She’s personable and shrewd, and doggone it, people like her.

  • Otis Izaltumuch

    None of them want to be there, but Cindy gets the foreground and the shine & the 100-watt smile, leaving Sarah in the shadows in the background. I wonder, will we be seeing any images of just Sarah & Cindy together, or will that look too much like “John’s other wife”?

  • shannza

    I have seen tons of pics of Cindy McCain during this election cycle, and I must say that this one looks the most sincere. She has a genuine, endearing smile, which only reminds me that this smile does not exist when she is photographed with her husband. She is on her best behavior around him, as if she’s scared of him. This photo is quite the contrast. Laura is a whole other story. She is like a shell. The photo in general, to me, seems to be reinforcing the non traditional aspect of the selection. Palin (or should we say Sarah) identifies with the spouses, the women, the families, not just the celebrities and power players. In that respect, I almost think it works.

  • jonst

    I’m with DennisQ…..don’t underestimate this woman.

  • mudkitty

    Good point G. Imagine if it were Cheney sitting there instead of Palin. It would never happen. It IS a sexist and patronizing image.

  • Bugboy

    That’s Cindy McCain? Isn’t there a clone daughter in her 20’s running around that looks just like her? And the soon to be not-First Lady looks like the Joker, sorry I can’t claim having tagged her with that first.
    Palin looks like the gold digger she always has been and always will be.

  • Kit (Keep It Trill)

    I’m no GOP fan by a long shot, and come from a very different culture and class, but these middle aged women look fantastic. Not fat, impeccably groomed and dressed. Damn, I wish I was rich. If I were, however, my furnishings would be more comfortable, inviting, and would match. Maybe it’s hotel room.
    I don’t see a big deal about the social space or distance between them. After all, they aren’t good girlfriends who have been chilling since back in the day. They were thrown together by political association, period. Laura and Cindy’s husbands aren’t pals but they are very rich. Sarah’s husband is a oil field worker and commercial fisherman – an average guy to say the least, and if a woman gets some degree of status from her her husband (sexist but true), it’s no wonder that she looks the least secure while the others have nothing to prove. Plus Sarah has that gigantic rumor hanging over her head. I’m amazed she’s putting herself through this VP fiasco.

  • g

    Hey, Gary Ruppert!! good seeing you over here!! I haven’t seen you trolling anywhere but Sadly, No, lately. Did you get another commission from Karl?

  • KansasKowboy

    Shouldn’t Palin’s husband be in this photo and not Sarah?

  • HarpoSnarx

    Consorts of the ruling class – all that’s missing is Battleaxe and Mommy.
    Wonder if Pickles enjoyed the book burner’s company?
    As for the huffy troll: it’s time America had a heart transplant. You Americafuckers keep it up, and USA will be diminished into seven or eight squabbly, nutjob banana republics within the next half century.

  • elfpix

    They must have gotten some staff member with a digital point and shoot to just run over and get the three “ladies” for the web site. Those vases? What are they doing there and why didn’t the photographer remove them. All that space? “C’mon, ladies. Tuck right in there on the sofa and smile!!!!” No portrait shooter would take that shot, no newspaper shooter, even, accustomed to shooting news on the fly, would let that get off their card. Even the angle is so amateurish.
    Just another sorry McCain production.

  • zatopa

    This lineup makes sense if we’re being sold the impression of Sarah Palin as “one of the ladies.” But, this sale has been made; the nice Republican values-voter ladies seem to like her fine. One of us makes it big, finally some credit for us working moms, and all that. But … out in the mediascape, where are all the photo-ops that are supposed to be persuading us of her political chops? Where are all the shots where they frame her the way they would Condi? Or are we just not supposed to think too hard about what it is she would do if she really attained some power?

  • cmac

    Why is she chatting with the wives? This is bizarre.

  • garbled missive

    three empty vases………

  • sdv

    I’m confused – why is she sitting with the wives? Would we ever see a picture of Cheney hanging with Laura and Cindy? And they say her critics are sexist?

  • Thomas

    I don’t recalling seeing Joe Biden’s photo with “the gals”.
    Seems like a sexist set up. Why isn’t Sarah photographed with the power brokers in McCain’s campaign, hunched over a big wooden table, talking strategy. This looks like “ladies tea time.”
    What a message . . .

  • David

    Couldn’t Cindy and Sarah at least learn to cross their legs properly?
    I third the “don’t underestimate Sarah” comment. And don’t knock the clothes. Did you not listen to the speech? They’re very purposely positioning her as everywoman. I’m not sure why people want to elect an “everywoman” (or “everyman”) to one of the highest offices of the land, but that’s the strategy, so no thousand-dollar dresses for her!

  • Hairy Carrion

    That has got to be the most Stepford photo I’ve ever seen. Gadzooks, it’s scary!

  • zzyzx

    “One of these objects does not match the others.”
    Stepford wives do not socialize. They sit properly and smile a lot. Sarah may be “one of the boys,” but I don’t see any senators in that room. Egad, what DO you do with a female candidate in a party of old white men?
    Excluding drugs and jewelry, total dollar amount of attire is probably close to quarter of a million dollars, plus whatever that is Palin is wearing. And I’ve noted over the years, that no matter what, who, or how much Laura Pickles is wearing, it always looks like it’s right off the rack.
    Don’t look for Cindy and Sarah being very chummy. Cindy watched John Sidney III beam and smile and twiddle with his ring finger on stage while introducing Sarah.

  • Cactus

    What if they are keeping her ‘hidden’ with the first wives to keep her away from the media. I heard some campaign nerd say today that they won’t let her near any ‘unstructured’ events, like, oh, um, er, “Meet the Press” or such. If she does any interviews, look for them to be on Faux where the sycophants can be counted upon to play softball. Even then she’ll probably have a handler at her elbow. It sounds like they are convinced that if we get to know her we would REALLY be repulsed. Since she was picked, two of my friends who had refused to vote for Obama have changed their minds. Palin, or her selection, has really PO’d a lot of people.

Refresh Archives

Random Notes