What is Sarah Palin famous for?

Sarah Palin: The Conservative Alaska Governor

Sarah Palin's nomination for the US Vice Presidency in August came as a surprise to many. Until then, her name was hardly known outside of the state of Alaska, which she has only headed as governor since 2006. She is thus a political outsider; in Washington it has so far hardly distinguished itself. Especially in foreign and security policy, topics that play an important role in this election campaign, it does not have a profile of its own.

Little experience in foreign and security policy

Presidential candidate John McCain and his running mate Sarah Palin

The 44-year-old Palin came into politics in 1992 when she was elected city councilor in her hometown of Wasilla. Four years later she took over the post of mayor in the small town. In 2006 she became the first woman governor of Alaska, which has just under 700,000 residents.

So far, she has not gained much foreign policy experience in this office. In a TV interview with the broadcaster ABC, Palin admitted that, apart from a visit to US soldiers in Kuwait and Germany, she had only been to Mexico and Canada so far. She has also never met a foreign head of state or government. In the interview, however, she formulated a number of positions that she takes with regard to the foreign and security policy of the USA: For example, Palin criticized the previous anti-terrorist policy of US President George W. Bush. Although she supported his course of "freeing the world from extremists", there were "mistakes" along the way, said the governor.

Georgia and Ukraine should join NATO

Sarah Palin visiting the troops in Kuwait

She advocates a preventive first strike against countries that threaten the US directly, but a military strike must always be the last resort. Palin also calls for Georgia and Ukraine to join NATO. Should Moscow then carry out a military invasion of the NATO country Georgia, Palin does not rule out a war against Russia.

In the field of energy policy, Palin considers himself competent enough to support John McCain in his efforts for more independence; after all, she was chairman of the oil and gas commission in Alaska and, according to her own statements, has experience in making a country more independent of foreign energy supplies.

The conservative governor

On other major election campaign issues such as the economy or health policy, Palin has not yet commented significantly. In Alaska, she was primarily committed to expanding the areas of work, education, public health and safety, transportation and infrastructure.

Sarah Palins preaches abstinence - her 17-year-old daughter is expecting a child.

The mother of five is considered very conservative. Palin is a staunch anti-abortionist and a representative of traditional family values. She also rejects sex education classes and instead supports programs to promote sexual abstinence among adolescents. This rigid sexual morality was criticized in the media as untrustworthy, especially against the background of the pregnancy of her 17-year-old daughter Bristol.

Death penalty advocate and member of the NRA

Palin advocates the death penalty and, as a lifelong member of the National Rifle Association (NRA), campaigns for the right to private gun possession, which is particularly popular with the Republican base.

Despite her previous political outsider existence, one thing is certain for her: She is the right person for the post of Vice President. When John McCain offered her the candidacy, she said "yes" without hesitation, because she is convinced: "I have the confidence that I will be prepared." (dsc)