Rewind to the end of the last of Governor Sarah Palin’s prep sessions for last Thursday’s vice-presidential debate. Picture the captain of the prep team — let’s call him Steve Schmidt — giving his last piece of advice to Palin …

And Sarah, sweetheart, one more thing. We need you to say ‘nuclear’ like President Bush … nuk-u-lar. Got that? Let me tell you why. The public at large doesn’t care how it’s pronounced but Bush’s way drives libs insane … batshit crazy. Mwa-ha-ha.

I mean if there was ever any doubt Sarah Palin is George Bush in a moose hunter get-up, this salvo of “nukular”s from the debate transcript should erase it.

An armed, nukular armed especially Iran is so extremely dangerous to consider. They cannot be allowed to acquire nukular weapons period. Israel is in jeopardy of course when we’re dealing with Ahmadinejad as a leader of Iran. Iran claiming that Israel as he termed it, a stinking corpse, a country that should be wiped off the face of the earth. Now a leader like Ahmadinejad who is not sane or stable when he says things like that is not one whom we can allow to acquire nukular energy, nukular weapons. Ahmadinejad, Kim Jong Il, the Castro brothers, others who are dangerous dictators are one that Barack Obama has said he would be willing to meet with without preconditions being met first.

And an issue like that taken up by a presidential candidate goes beyond naivete and goes beyond poor judgment. A statement that he made like that is downright dangerous because leaders like Ahmadinejad who would seek to acquire nukular weapons and wipe off the face of the earth an ally like we have in Israel should not be met with without preconditions and diplomatic efforts being undertaken first.
[emphasis and spelling adjustments mine]

Palin’s use of the Bush pronunciation is rather fitting, really.

The funny thing is — and I’m basing this on no evidence of any kind — I’ll bet 75 percent of the public pronounces it like it’s spelled — nu-cle-ar. If I’m right then pronouncing it nuk-ular was yet another way Palin didn’t help herself woo uncommitted voters with her debate performance.

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