Gary Bauer, national pro-family leader describes her as a home run. She's strongly pro-life and pro-marriage -- the two bellwether issues for social conservatives. Some questions were raised about her stance on gay rights and specifically domestic partner benefits.
A Washington Post in a story had this to say about her views on the issues.
On her campaign Web site, she described herself as a "conservative Republican" who believes firmly in free market capitalism, as well as a "lifetime member of the NRA" with a strong commitment to gun rights. She also said she opposes abortion and believes that "marriage should only be between a man and a woman." However, Palin has shown receptivity to gay and lesbian concerns about discrimination, and as governor she vetoed legislation that would have barred Alaska from granting state benefits to same-sex couples.The background on the domestic partner issue is she vetoed a bill which sought to overturn a Alaskan Supreme Court decision mandating domestic partner benefits for state employees. She was advised by her attorney general that the bill was unconstitutional. A news report said:
In the first veto of an administration that isn't yet a month old, Palin said she rejected the bill despite her disagreement with a state Supreme Court order earlier this month that directed the state to offer benefits to same-sex partners of state employees.
Advice from her new attorney general said the bill passed by the Legislature was unconstitutional, she said.
"Signing this bill would be in direct violation of my oath of office," Palin said in a prepared statement released by her administration Thursday night.
I think the key point is she disagreed with the state Supreme Court decision mandating the benefits and she vetoed the bill because she felt, to do otherwise, would have violated her oath of office. That highlights her strong sense of principle.
Normally, vice presidential candidates don't make a big difference. Dan Quayle's difficulties didn't hurt George Bush senior despite his respected democratic vice president opponent, Senator Lloyd Bentsen of Texas. It will still come down to what people think of McCain and Obama. The choice does demonstrate that John McCain is willing to make decisive and even unpredictable decisions. And she could possibly sway some women voters disgruntled over Hilary Clinton's defeat.