With the line-up of personalities complete the US is gearing up for what will be, whatever the outcome, an historic presidential election.
Republican candidate John McCain’s surprise choice of Sarah Palin as his running mate was the latest twist in an eventful campaign. The Alaska governor will become the first woman vice president if her party wins.
And should the Democrats triumph, America will have its first black president. Barack Obama offered this view of his rival’s deputy: “I haven’t met her before, she seems like a compelling person, obviously a terrific story, person story. And you know, I’m sure she will help make a case for the Republicans. Unfortunately, the case is more of the same. And so ultimately, John McCain is at the top of the ticket.”
Analysts say McCain has taken a big gamble in picking Palin, who has no experience in national politics. It is thought she may help win the female vote and placate the right wing of her party because of her conservative leanings.
In contrast Obama’s selection of the veteran Joe Biden as running mate is seen as a safe choice. But it is still all to play for ahead of the vote on November 4.