Skip to comments.The evolution of Sarah Palin (They still don't 'get' her)
Posted on 02/07/2012 6:23:37 PM PST by 2ndDivisionVet
2012 could have looked much different for Sarah Palin. Had the former Alaska governor entered the GOP presidential race, she likely would have been winding her One Nation bus tour through the primary states, antagonizing her opponents with quips about being the only candidate not afraid to go rogue or rely on her Mama Grizzly instincts.
Instead, she has the heavily marketed HBO movie Game Change which appears to scrutinize her role in the 2008 presidential contest to look forward to.
Palin still lands big gigs: Shes billed as the closing speaker at this years Conservative Political Action Conference, which starts Thursday. And she continues to create media dust-ups in a few simple words, as evidenced by her Vote for Newt; annoy a liberal comment on Fox News last month.
But ever since she ended her flirtation with a presidential bid last October, signs have pointed to a long, slow descent into the political has-beens basement for Palin. Perhaps the most telling detail is her political action committees most recent fundraising numbers.
SarahPAC raised roughly $756,000 in the second half of 2011, down from the consistent seven-figure reporting periods it had before then.
It looks as though Palin might be morphing into less a political powerhouse and more a reality-television star.
Game Change will further [her] celebrity, says Marie Wilson, founder and president emeritus of The White House Project, an organization that works to advance women in politics and business. The movie is scheduled for release next month.
The more celebrity-like she becomes, the less likely it is that she will be able to reemerge as a serious candidate for public office, Wilson and other experts say. The result is a word just a year ago few people would have associated with her: irrelevance.
I actually dont hear anybody talking about her, Tea Party Patriots co-founder Mark Meckler says.
Meckler says Palin never spoke for the Tea Party to begin with but that her message often resonates with Tea Partiers because she isnt afraid of speaking out against the political establishment.
Shes just not as central because she stepped out of the political ring and into the media-slash-entertainment ring, he says.
When Palin resigned the Alaska governorship in 2009, she said she wanted to unshackle herself from an official title. But in so doing, she also relinquished an establishment platform that lent credence to any political aspirations she might have harbored. Meckler and others say Palin would either have to throw her hat back in the ring by running for office or develop an expertise for voters to see her once again as a true politician with potential to lead.
The reason the McCain campaign selected her was her energy credential, says University of Pennsylvania political communication Professor Kathleen Hall Jamieson.
Palin would need to hone an issue portfolio that is grounded in expertise for her to return to politics, Jamieson says.
But meanwhile, Jamieson and other observers note other rising stars like Republicans Rep. Paul Ryan (Wis.), Sen. Marco Rubio (Fla.) and Gov. Chris Christie (N.J.) are taking up roles she might have filled.
Now that there are actual politicians who are also addressing the Tea Party angst and representing that ethos, I think its fair to say her influence has diminished some, conservative commentator S.E. Cupp wrote in an email to The Hill.
One Republican strategist, speaking anonymously, says Palin lost an amazing amount of influence and coverage once she decided not to run for president.
Its a far cry from the Palin-mania that struck the country in 2008.
I think people even forget that she was governor, says Democratic strategist Celinda Lake. I think its sad that shes kind of become a caricature, because shes obviously smart. But now shes perceived as smart in a Paris Hilton kind of way.
Then again, there hasnt been any public persona quite like Palin. She occupied a space halfway between politics and entertainment from the start of her national debut in 2008, many say.
I think the way she emerged on the scene her beauty, her sexuality, to be candid, the way she winked at the audience, her flirtatiousness all of that made her early on a combination [of politician and celebrity], The White House Projects Wilson says.
Others say its not so much celebrity as it is her true self Palin being Palin that attracted people to her four years ago and that can still excite large swaths of the American people.
Palin was never popular because she was viewed as a celebrity, conservative commentator Jedediah Bila says. She was [and] is popular because, in a sea of pre-programmed politicians, she has never been afraid to sound like a regular person and to just be herself.
The result is that people see themselves in her, Bila says, and believe she means what she says.
In politics, that is extremely rare, she says. And I think that no matter what she pursues in the future that trait will go with her.
What her future holds remains an open question. Though she has trumpeted Newt Gingrich in the GOP presidential primary, she hasnt backed him formally, and she has yet to indicate whether shell make any endorsements in the 2012 congressional races after playing an outsize role in 2010. A request for a comment from SarahPAC on Palins plans went unreturned.
I think that her role moving forward is going to depend on what she does, Bila says. Is she going to be an insider and shape whats happening? Or is she going to be an outsider? And Im not sure shes made her decision for the long term.
I’ll take the bet, hoping to lose it! Steak would be on me! Anyway, your sub headline was right on the money. These people simply cannot compute what is going on inside Sarah’s noggin but they certainly think themselves capable.
Unlike any DC female pols or wives of pols, this is a woman I could actually talk to. She could walk into my home and not bat an eyelash at the toys scattered on the living room floor or the dishes in the sink. This is a woman I could sit with at my kitchen table and discuss potty training issues, all while sipping coffee together. At the same time, I could also offer her a beer and really talk about being a full time mommy, wife, and employee. Sarah is real and many people don’t get that.
That said, Palin’s influence within the GOP has declined precipitously because she decided not to run. She can get it back, but she has to engage in elective politics.
Anyone can yak from the sidelines. We have Ann Coulter for that. It takes a politician to get in the game and fight.
Seriously... for three years now, has one single month ever gone by in which there wasn’t one bloomin’ (if not several) big-profile MSM article which proclaimed “Palin is no longer relevant?”
If a month indeed goes by in which the media is NOT touting this theme, well, then maybe I might buy into that proposition.
Had she entered, based on what I’ve seen of the rest of the field, we’d be down to her, Romney and maybe Paul at this point. And I think everybody knows it.
She was told not to run or they’d completely destroy her & her family. Nothing else makes sense. I guess Romney was not meant to have any real competition.
The lady reading the first lesson yesterday at the 7:30AM Mass at St. Patrick’s Cathedral in New York City sounded just like Sarah Palin.
Of what, the Wasilla Rotary club?
Of course. And she was told it by both the GOP and the Dems. Along with multiple direct death threats.
More evidence that all national elections in this country are rigged and/or have a pre-determined outcome. Only a civil war will change that fact, and it could very well cause things to get worse, just like the last civil war did.
I didn’t know “levels of obsession” were an issue, but I can see your point.
I, however, have never posted a single thread about Our Sarah, either pro or con.
You on the other hand can’t seem to let the merest oblique reference to her go unposted.
I don’t like her. This isn’t a secret.
I don’t like lima beans either.
If you constantly posted threads about how great lima beans are the result would be the same.
I’d note some of them and make a dismissive post or two about lima beans.
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