When McCain picked Palin for V.P., Mitt had a fit, party insiders revealed. So he started a group – no, a movement! – called R.A.T.S. Republicans Against Titanic Stupidity. Not unlike P.U.M.A. (People United Means Action), started by gals who bolted from the Dems and bitterly assailed them for not selecting Hillary. “We WILL not vote for Barack Obama. We will not support or donate to or volunteer for the DNC or the national party. We will do everything we can to make sure you lose...,” wrote their leader, Darragh Murphy.

But I digress. Following is a copy of the letter Romney allegedly sent to the New York Times. It was never printed because Mitt apparently had a change of heart when placated by an offer to speak at the convention. He said the letter was a fake and became a McCain loyalist.

(The letter was leaked to various blogs, probably by a Romney staffer.)

Dear John,

What unmitigated GALL! WORSE THAN GALL! HUBRIS!!!

How dare you pick a ditzy, media-hungry bubblehead instead of one of us on the short list. We’re mad as hell, so we’ve become R.A.T.S. Republicans Against Titanic Stupidity.

It’s like you put a rank rookie into the Superbowl when you bloody well know that any one of the RATS is far more qualified than that piss-ant. She should be home nursing and diapering her five-month-old child. And caring for her other kids. Not to mention preparing for number six in the family.

Face it! You pulled a sleazy switch as soon as Hillary was nixed for V.P. Her fans were so steamed, you figured they’d be up for grabs. So you hopped on a chick you never knew or even met, except one time before she was hastily – and sloppily – vetted.

What about our other broads? Smart and time-tested party stalwarts like Elizabeth Dole, Kay Bailey Hutchinson, Condi Rice, Susan Collins, and Marsha Blackburn. And what about the rest of us RATS? Arnold Schwarzenegger, Colin Powell, Rudy Giuliani, Tim Pawlenty, Tom Ridge, Joe Lieberman, Mike Huckabee, Fred Thompson and all the others on the not-very-short list?

Any one of us could out-qualify that pompous political pygmy from Alaska. But then none of us won a beauty contest or aspired to be Miss Alaska or Miss America. No wonder she won your heart. As Jay Leno put it: “If you had a heart attack, would you want mouth-to-mouth from Romney?”

So, after bashing Obama for milking the media like a rock star, you go for a soon-to-be grandmother who’s got the hots to join the glitterati.

You think a small-town glamourpuss who majored in sports journalism, who served on a small-town city council and became mayor of Hicksville, Hinterland, USA (population 8000 ), who ran a business with her hubby selling snowmobiles and watercraft, who did a stint as head of an oil and gas company, who had no academic degree in law or political science, and who has been governor for only 18 months of a state rated 47 in population –- you think this impostor with the cahones of a pitbull on steroids, can match the experience of any of us RATS?

It’s damn clear, John, you gambled your pick would peal away most of the 27 percent of Hill’s diehard fans. Mad as a wet hen they may be, but you’re dumber than a rock if you think those radical feminist harpies are going to switch their allegiance to a far-right fanatic featherweight a heartbeat away from the presidency.

That kook wants to overturn Roe vs.Wade, wants no part of stem-cell research, wants to abolish abortion even for rape and incest, and wants to have creationism –- but not sex education -– in the schools. She stated that humans lived side-by-side with dinosaurs 6000 years ago.

She opposes family planning and favors abstinence. She rejects scientific evidence that humans mainly influence global warming.

When mayor she fired a librarian after the woman said she would refuse any directive to censor books. After a protest demonstration, she was rehired. The governor was against equal pay for women, against a minimum wage, against health care reform for women and children, and voted in favor of 27 million in earmarks for her town and 398 million for the notorious bridge to nowhere when running for governor in 2006. When the media exposed the scandal, she flipflopped and proudly boasted about her fiscal conservatism.

She never returned the federal money but spent it on public works. (As Democrat pundit Paul Begala snidely put it: “She got enough pork to catch trichinosis.”) And what kind of good Republican taxes the oil companies? At least before she joined them and argued for drilling in Alaska’s protected Arctic National Wildlife Refuge ( which even Bush opposed ). She has put into office, including attorney general and secretary of agriculture, childhood and high school chums with dubious credentials. She promised transparency and an end to corruption in Washington but refused to cooperate with a state committee (Republicans and Democrats) that unanimously found her guilty of illegally firing a commissioner in the Troopergate case. In 2006 when she becaome governor, she illegally spent $13,000 of taxpayer funds to attend, along with her family, ten religious events and meetings. And, finally, the former Miss Congeniality has no congressional experience on a state or federal level and zero foreign policy experience. Oh, I almost forgot! She slashed funding for teen moms! ( But not to worry about Bristol ending up in a homeless shelter. )

Granted, John, your presumptive princess heats up the luke-warm evangelical base, but how the hell is the fisherwoman going to reel in mainstream moderates? And not all of the devout right-wingers for family values support her. Many agree with a blogger who questioned the wisdom of a large-family mother traveling constantly while leaving husband Todd (on leave from an oil company job ) to be Mr. Mom and his 17-year-old daughter to care for the two babies. ( Thank God, He gave gals two breasts!)

Parents of Down Syndrome babies pointed out that these children require fulltime care in the early years of life and often need special medical attention, such as extra tests, physical therapy, and even surgery. Ms. Multitasking Supermom doesn’t seem fazed by the challenge. With breast pump at the ready, she’s still bent on shattering “that glass ceiling once and for all.”

From a recent profile in PEOPLE: “Within hours of Trig’s birth Palin was signing bills and BlackBerrying colleagues. She took only a few days of maternity leave, opting instead to bring Trig to work occasionally. Now when she travels, her carry-on bag includes extra bottles and an electric breast pump. ‘I’ve never had to leave a meeting to feed him,’ she says, then adds with a laugh, ‘but I have been on teleconferences where no one has known I was nursing him.’”

Giving suck might be a problem while presiding over the U.S. Senate. Not to mention while keeping abreast of her fishing, moose-hunting, and water-skiing activities.

Bottom line, Senator John McCain: For being dishonored and disgraced, we RATS are deserting your sinking ship and joining the Dems. Our slogan:

Palin is failin’

And McCain’s a pain!

We’re siden’ with Biden

— Saul Rosenthal

Terre Haute

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