St. Paul (Minnesota), Sept.4 : Senator John McCain, the Republican presidential nominee, may be seen as a maverick when it comes to taking decisions, but his critics say that this impulsive behavior could cost the country dearly in times of crisis.
McCain's move to announce Alaska Governor Sarah Palin as his running mate for the November 4 presidential poll has elicited the view that he has dangerously and rashly opted to pick a little-known rookie politician.
According to a report in Canada's Globe and Mail newspaper, the core question of this election campaign till Tuesday was: Can you trust Barack Obama, who is so inexperienced, but now the question in most people's mind is can you trust John McCain, who has such erratic judgment?
According to the paper, there are two competing narratives as far as Palin is concerned. In the first narrative, the Governor is a young politician of impeccable integrity who has taken on and defeated corruption within her own party, who is a loving mother of five children, a staunch Christian and a firm champion of the right to life and to bear arms.
This narrative, according to the paper, will hold considerable appeal for the lower-income and older women independents in industrial states who will cast the deciding votes in this election.
The second narrative is of a more critical content in that it exposes Palin as having problems within her family, that her tenure as mayor and governor is less untarnished than was first thought, that critics were right to question whether she has the background and experience to step in, possibly, as president of the United States.
The paper says that McCain had choices. He could have picked a safe candidate who had been vetted by the inevitable scrutiny that comes from years in public life.
In short, the controversy surrounding Palin's selection has ensured that with the election only eight weeks away, it undermines McCain's claim that he is a seasoned veteran who can be trusted as commander-in-chief.
"If Mr. McCain is so impulsive as to pick a vice-presidential candidate with so much baggage - with who knows how much of it unpacked - what would he do if Russian troops entered Ukraine?"
It's a question that McCain must answer, or risk having the voters answer it for him.