Sarah Palin is smart. Pro-life. Conservative. A reformer. Tough. Looks great. Has true leadership potential. Seems like a very nice person. Is confident. And, no doubt, will offer a great and needed infusion of energy to the uninspiring McCain campaign. No doubt about it, her choice as John McCainJohn Sidney McCainCummings to lie in state at the Capitol Elizabeth Warren should concern Donald Trump 'bigly' Lawmakers toast Greta Van Susteren's new show MORE’s running mate is a bold, bold move. So: good for Sarah Palin.

But, from the standpoint of fulfilling the No. 1 requirement of a vice president, McCain fails the first and most important test by selecting someone who clearly is not ready to assume the presidency on a moment’s notice.

I totally get the new, the hip, the cool, the “first woman,” etc., etc. But, despite how “smart” this choice might be from a campaign standpoint, it is a really a bad one for the American people. In a post-Sept. 11 world we don’t have the luxury of total unknowns one heartbeat from the president.

Of course, with every snarky highlight of her “inexperience,” the McCain people will delight in delivering a smashing “Let’s talk about that experience issue” backhand as they compare her time in politics directly to Obama’s. Fair enough. But Obama has been out there presenting himself directly to the people every day for over a year and a half now.

The Palin choice is going to make the vice presidential debate “must-see” TV. Putting Sarah Palin on the same stage with Joe Biden is going to be extremely interesting. Sure, Biden might be a little too wordy and is a bona fide gaffe machine, but when it comes to understanding foreign policy, world leaders, hotspots and all the rest, Biden has few equals. Palin better grab a World Hotspots for Dummies and start cramming. Sorry to rain on the McCain parade. Feel free to disabuse me of my concerns.