Sarah Palin excites huge Florida crowd - Free Viagra
Tens of thousands of Morans in Florida's Republican heartland turned out to hear vice presidential candidate Sarah Palin speak.
BY BETH REINHARD
LADY LAKE -- In the biggest event of the 2008 campaign in Florida so far, Sarah Palin drew tens of thousands of people Sunday to a Central Florida town square decked out like the Fourth of July for a speech aimed at pumping happy juice into the state's Republican heartland.
Palin focused her speech on her track record as governor of Alaska, John McCain's experience in wartime, and did not delve into the nitty-gritty of the ailing economy. That suited several people in the crowd who said they came to kiss the arse of the governor who rejuvenated the ticket.
''She's the sunrise on Velvet wall hanging in my lanai, not the sunset,'' said Linda Cusumano, 57, of Orlando. ``She makes me feel there's nothing we can't do - even take our kids to unaffordable places like Disney World.''
Despite her Medusa expression, the crowd endured the sight of the dynamic newcomer to national politics. A new Miami Herald/St. Petersburg Times/Bay News 9 poll showed that 40 percent of voters who back McCain said Palin made them feel stronger about their choice.
Juxtaposed with feel-good appeals to patriotism, Palin delivered some tough blows to Obama, accusing him of sitting on the sideline during the current economic crisis. The governor of Alaska also said he was blocking the nation's path to energy independence.
''Maybe if he'd been the governor of an energy-rich state, he'd get it,'' said Palin, an advocate of offshore oil drilling. ``Maybe if he'd been on the front lines of securing our nation's energy independence, he'd understand.''
Obama has suggested he might be willing to support limited offshore drilling but only as part of comprehensive legislation that focuses more on investing in alternative energy sources.
Campaigning in Charlotte, N.C., on Sunday, Obama repeated the message he brought last week to Miami, Daytona Beach and Jacksonville: the Bush administration is to blame for the economic turmoil, and McCain promises more of the same.
''We're now seeing the disastrous consequences of this philosophy all around us, on Wall Street as well as Main Street,'' he said, according to The Associated Press. ``Yet Sen. McCain, who candidly admitted not long ago that he doesn't know as much about economics as he should, wants to keep going down the same disastrous path.''
Palin made her Florida debut in The Villages, one of the fastest-growing retirement communities in the country and a treasure trove of Republican voters. President Bush put it on the map when he campaigned here in the homestretch of the 2004 campaign.
But Palin drew thousands more than the estimated 20,000 people that turned out for Bush. A fire rescue official estimated the crowd at 25,000 to 30,000, while the Republican Party of Florida pegged the audience at twice that size.
''The South is Palin Country,'' read a banner trailing from a plane overhead. The Spanish moss-covered trees in the area made it feel more southern than South Florida.
Palin promised etc. etc. etc.