Of all the things that went wrong for Senator John McCain's general election campaign, polling suggests that the selection of Governor Sarah Palin was near the top of the list, right below the financial crisis which - by the way, could have played to his so-called "experience advantage" had McCain demonstrated actual expertise on the subject.
After weeks of polling, not to mention water cooler laughter over the near-perfect SNL parodies of Gov. Palin, it was clear to anyone paying attention that the Alaskan who provided a short-term sugar rush to a previously staid campaign was a long-term drag on the GOP ticket. So what does it say to the rest of the country when 69% of GOP voters are revealed today by Rasmussen Reports to believe that Sarah Palin actually helped Senator McCain's campaign. They weren't asked if they liked her (which they clearly do), they were asked if she helped!
My conclusion is that this is just the latest indicator of the up-hill climb facing Republicans hoping to return to majority status anytime soon. Sure, Gov. Huckabee or any number of others could have motivated the social conservative base without cornering the GOP into only being competitive with the plumbers and six pack drinkers who, like it or not, should never confuse likeability with governing ability.