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BREAKING NEWS: While Senator John McCain didn’t come right out as say he was conceding the election to Barack Obama, he might as well have. On Friday, Senator McCain used his 72nd birthday to announce he had selected Alaska governor Sarah Palin as his running mate.

You CAN’T tell me this is the most qualified person he could pick for the job. If I were to guess, after seeing the images of 84,000 people crammed into the 70,000 seat Mile High Stadium Thursday night, every high-profile Republican whose name had been floated as a likely McCain VP pick (Romney, Pawlenty, Ridge, Huckabee, Thompson (Fred), Jindal, Giuliani, Hutchinson, Lieberman, etc) all suddenly realized this election was over, recognized that running with McCain is political suicide, and came to the conclusion that running against Obama meant risking looking like a total bigot while finding themselves in the uncomfortable spot of defending the Bush legacy.

McCain chose a 2 year governor. Former beauty queen, under investigation, has a pregnant 17 year old daughter (now confirmed), opposes “stem cell” research (unlike McCain), pro drilling in ANWR (unlike McCain), pro-Union (unlike the rest of the GOP including McCain, who are virulently anti-union), who’s not even sure what the VP does, and will simply be demolished in a VP debate against Joe Biden… to be his running mate. Palin didn’t need to “step forward”, clearly everyone else “stepped back” when proffered the job.

How does the now 72 year old cancer survivor McCain make the case that Palin is “ready from day one” to fill his shoes should the worst happen? How does he continue to argue that Obama is “too inexperienced” to be President after picking a first-term Governor of a sparsely populated state? Even simply on the basis of gender, how does he argue she is more experienced than even Senator Kay-Baily Hutchinson of Texas?

I’m left to draw only one conclusion: the Republicans have given up on any chance of winning this election. No one wants to be on the losing team and are now simply concentrating on 2012.