Recently, it was revealed that Governor Sarah Palin has benefited from campaign funds in the most personal way. Politico reports that the Republican National Committee, who has provided a fundraising buffer for John McCain in the home stretch, also footed the bill for about $150,000 on wardrobe improvements for Gov. Sarah Palin.
John McCain and Barack Obama have both come under scrutiny for their campaign financing methods, using loopholes to get $30,000 donations and higher.
Gov. Palin has also used her Washington outsider and reformer image to connect to voters who seek a new face to break up the corruption on Capitol Hill. In this case, however, the McCain-Palin ticket will have to answer for their “spending freeze” rhetoric in the face of such extravagant costs on the trail. It seems the elitist argument, promoted tirelessly by the RNC against Barack Obama and the media, is going up in flames.
Here are ten things the Governor’s wardrobe upgrades could buy:
1. 6 suits of military body armor for soldiers abroad – Costs have increased, with many soldiers having to pay out of their salaries to purchase their outfits. Perhaps the Governor could help son Track’s infantry with a loan from her campaign. They might even be able to afford a down payment on a Humvee without armor, listed at $225K.
2. One suburban school’s sex education program at roughly $150 per child. Studies show that countries with a commitment to adolescent sexual health and responsibility, as opposed to abstinence-only programs, have a lower teen birth rate and lower public costs related to teen parenthood.
3. 125 rape kits for victims of the violent sexual act. Gov. Palin advocated that victims pay the bill for their own rape examinations, rather than leave it to “irresponsible government.” The kits cost up to $1200 in some cases.
4. Three Anchorage plumber salaries. For all of their talk about how Joe the Plumber will suffer under Obama’s tax policy, they fail to advocate for the average plumber, whose salary falls somewhere between $40,000 and $50,000. The RNC and Palin might be able to directly improve an Alaskan plumber’s quality of life by investing that money in his/her business.
5. 25 Public Four-Year College Tuitions. The cost of a public four-year college degree is just about $6,000. Mark it up to $30,000 for a private university’s stamp of approval. Rather than having more students take on impossible loans, Gov. Palin could devote her shopping money to a scholarship fund.
6. Three hybrid cars. Palin has been pegged as an expert on energy when the only real solution she has advocated is tapping oil reserves. Hybrid cars cost more than gas vehicles, but save the consumer more money as the price of gas rises. Maybe Sarah Palin could make a provision for an out-of-pocket tax credit to citizens who bought those vehicles. She might even autograph the money for you!
7. 3 Starting Teacher Salaries. The average public school teachers make more than they did three years ago, but there are still many resources lacking in public education. The more money we can pay our teachers, the better. Sarah Palin could have her own team of teachers if she cut back on her cosmetic indulgence.
8. One year of medical care for an autistic child. Mrs. Palin’s young son has Down’s syndrome, which will be a unique challenge for their family. They are helped by the Governor’s quality of life and state-sponsored health care. The average cost of care for an autistic person in a lifetime is $3.2 million dollars. Families with middle incomes cannot easily pay for these costs, or come out of the debt that goes with raising a special needs child. Too bad the Governor cut special needs budgets in her home state by 60+% over three years.
9. 2 Wall Street donations to the McCain Campaign. Although both candidates have accepted unusually large donations from individuals and corporations, John McCain in particular has taken $70,000+ donations from about a dozen individuals in private industry. One wonders if the founder of td Ameritrade would be pleased to know that his hard-earned cash goes into Palin’s walk-in closet.
10. 37 Seconds of the Iraq War. The war chest has been plundered to no end. It currently costs the country $10.3 billion dollars a month to occupy and secure Iraq. Palin could sponsor her own moment of silence for the dedicated soldiers who have lost their lives, but it wouldn’t be a very long moment.