1- Cheech Marin
2- Tiger Woods
3- Miss America
They all said no.
I think this is one of those moments of such tremendously awful political judgment that people will spend a lot of time assuaging their disbelief with "crazy like a fox" sort of commentary. At least for some short period. But then the fox will start burrowing a hole or some shit, and we'll all be like nope, just stupid like an actual, non-metaphorical small mammal.
I'm not sure how many Clinton voters are still 1) persuadable one way or the other 2) disgruntled, 3) live in a battleground, 4) inclined to not be bitter toward the younger, hotter token hire and 5) willing to vote for a pro-lifer.
If that's the move he wanted to make, he should have gone with oh, I don't know, Olympia Snowe. Then those 345 votes would have all been his. Which is why I don't actually think this is about those voters, at least not mostly. I think the idea is the base benefits of Pawlenty's politics with better optics. She eats mooseburgers, she's a MILF, etc- just the sort of thing to please the no-info voters out there.
Most of all, though, this just betrays a level of desperation that the media coverage does its best to obscure. However slapdashedly, McCain made a calculation that he would lose with a safer pick like Mitt Romney and that he had to take a big risk. I'd be shocked if it works. It undercuts his most compelling attack on Obama in "experience." More importantly, I think it opens up a whole host of attack points on judgment and age. Now we can talk about McCain's age-- a real liability, though more or less untouched to this point-- without actually talking about it.
"I'm old because I was a POW" probably isn't going to work.