Philip, the poll numbers are telling — Rasmussen also has McCain moving ahead today — but the anecdotal evidence may be even more convincing in terms of how Palin has galvanized the Republican base.
Two months ago, I could report the “we’re doomed” reaction of conservatives and nobody seemed to care that much. Now? Don’t dare speak a discouraging word to a conservative about the GOP’s chances. It is clear that, at last, the base has rallied. They believe Republicans have a real chance to win, and they view any criticism or negativity as undermining that chance.
Why? Several things come to mind, but the most obvious is that McCain was never dear to the hearts of most conservatives, but there was a love-at-first-sight reaction to Palin, and they’re ready to fight for her.