I detailed the tactical notion behind the choice; but I don't think it's necessarily going to work. Why? Because I suspect that many women will, well, find her off-putting and insulting.
They'll think "why is this [insert epithet about unintelligent, attractive women here] supposed to represent me? Is this what I'm supposed to care about? Is this the person I'm supposed to identify with? HER?"
In this way, I think her beauty—and yes, she is that—might actually work against her. Any woman who has seen another woman gain power through exploiting her attractiveness, despite a lack of intelligence, is going to have a real problem with McCain's VP choice. Would she have become governor if she weren't a former beauty pageant winner? Not a chance. That's what seperates her from Hillary: Hillary worked for it, and has been working for it for a long time, and even if she screwed up her campaign this year, nobody can say that she was handed the position.
Palin? I suspect people may not be so sure.
Fair? maybe. Maybe not. It doesn't matter. This is perception, not reality. No Republican has ever given a rat's ass about "fair", as Obama so eloquently reminded us last night. They made this choice, and now they have to deal with it.