Loved Palin's speech, think she could be the first woman prez, but doubt she'll put McCain over the top this year. Electoral numbers still look too Obama-friendly for her to make a difference. All the Kerry states are still going Dem + Iowa, which gives O/Biden 259 to start. Obama can win just Ohio, just Virginia, just CO+NM, just CO+NV and he wins unless M/Palin make a really big move in PA or MI, which hasn't happened yet. But if you look at 2012, things get more challenging because about 10 elec votes will shift from Kerry to Bush states. NY, MA lose among others, while TX, GA, FL, and AZ gain. Makes it easier then for a social conservative GOPer to win. Even if he has an incredible 1st term, O still will have a challenge in the college. Even without all the extra electoral votes TX will have received by 2012, Clinton's '96 landslide, at a time of exceptional peace and prosperity, was a reasonably modest 379-159, nothing like the Reagan 84 landslide of 525-13. Also with so much growth in the SW, GOP needs to STFU about immigration or do something to throw Hispanics a bone, because it needs to hold onto AZ, NV, and FL. Within GOP, very likely Palin is the next candidate. Romney's probably the only serious challenger, and he'll be 65 in 2012, and seriously doubt he'd be raising as much money for Mac as Palin is. Also, unlike Dems, GOP rarely has new people emerge in an election cycle - McCain, Bush, Dole, Bush Sr, Reagan, Ford, Nixon - all either lost previous primaries, were past VPs, or were related to a past pres.