Presidential candidates Senator Barack Obama (D-Il) and Senator John McCain (R-AZ) have announced their picks for their Vice Presidents. Senator Obama, the Democratic nominee for President, selected Senator Joe Biden of Delaware as his running mate on 23 August 2008. Senator Obama embraced his running mate while making the announcement, stating that Senator Biden is a "statesman with sound judgment." Senator Biden is the chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee and has served as chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee.

Following the Democratic convention in Denver, Colorado, and prior to the start of the Republican National Convention in St. Paul, Minnesota this week, Senator McCain announced that he has chosen Governor Sarah Palin of Alaska as his running mate. Governor Palin, new to the national stage, has served as Governor of Alaska for the past two years. Previously, she served two terms as mayor of Wasilla, Alaska.

Given the surprise nature of McCain's announcement, reporters, pundits and policymakers are now working to understand Palin's positions, interests and experience. Of note to scientists and educators, the Anchorage Daily News reported in October 2006 that Palin thinks creationism should be taught alongside evolution in Alaska public school classrooms. During a gubernatorial debate, Palin said "Teach both…I am a proponent of teaching both."


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